Only eight left, nearly there! I’ll try and do some non-Eurovision reviews of something or other this week too, just to break things up. Sorry guys! But anyway, time now to look at the pre-selection for a country that most thought might not make it to the contest at all, Slovenia.
Poor Slovenia haven’t had much luck since the semi-finals started in 2004. Until then they had poodled along since its 1993 debut, doing well enough to attend most of the contests, even reaching the top 10 three times. But with the need to qualify, only 2 out of 10 semi-finals have led to qualification. They only just made it to 2014’s contest, with an extension from the EBU giving them enough time to cobble the entry fee together.
So here we are, a national final, the first for a few years. You’d think they’d go cheap and do an internal selection this time, but hey ho. A public vote decided the winner from 7 finalists, easy peasy. Did they make a good choice though?
Omar Naber – I Won’t Give Up
This is going back a bit, Omar represented Slovenia in 2005 but didn’t quite qualify. Still hot though, has it really been 9 years?? He’s got a Killers-esque rock-pop track, sort of modern but sort of not – it’s quite slick anyway, I like it, his voice is lovely. It’s a bit Britpop, maybe more like the Manic Street Preachers at the height of their commercial days. Yeah, really like this one!
Nermin Puškar & Samuel Lucas – Masquerade
I love the graphics on this show, as a side-note. Not sure about this guy though, a combover too far I think. He doesn’t quite have the same appeal as Omar. His friend with the ridiculous headband is even less appealing. Is it a headband? Is it a bandana? Who can say? Not sure what they are going for here, a very diluted synth-tinged attempt at nu-metal emo-rock or something? It’s not doing it for me, whatever it is. Next!
Bilbi – To ni blues (This is not blues)
What the hell? Is this an amateur theatre group? Blues! Blues! The women are dressed in shower scrubbers, and performing a weird hybrid of dancing styles – a bit of Charleston, a bit of Latin, a rain dance? There’s a lot going on here, and it’s not pretty. I like the energy, but there’s too much of a good thing, you know? Maybe another year…
NUDE – Be OK!
Nude!! What a name, I hope it is gonna be OK. They don’t look nude. That lead guy needs to be nude. At least that would give something to look at, though the song does perk up a lot for the first chorus, thank goodness. Yeah this isn’t too bad, it’s gonna be OK! Smells like it wouldn’t do well at Eurovision though, stuck in the semis like so many Swiss pop-rock entries. Inoffensive but not a winner, and not nude.
Rudi Bučar & Elevators – Tja (There)
More rock fake-outs. Rudi’s got quite a nice little voice, it’s a shame it gets thrown in with this rather dated rock track. He’s quite cute too… ahh well. God, that bassist is creepy. It’s a solid enough chorus and I like his voice on it, but the rest of the package just isn’t very appealing to me. Another one that I couldn’t see making it through the semis.
Muff – Let Me Be (Myself)
Muff?! Oh I live for lost-in-translation moments like this. They got through to the superfinal, but tragically Europe won’t hear the sound of Muff in Copenhagen. Is that her name? She’s got quite a voice hasn’t she? Her attempts at a soulful tone are getting in the way of her English making any sense. But I like the drama all the same, at least it’s not more dad-rock. It’s like Gabriella Cilmi singing a Coldplay/Florence song. At least I can see wider appeal in this one, even if there’s not quite a ‘wow’ moment waiting in that last act. Singalong, and strong, but didn’t quite get the Slovenian vote.
Tinkara Kovač – Spet/Round and Round (Again)
So here’s the winner of the selection show, and we’ve a flutist! Good start, I’m on board. Ooh I quite like this, that’s a decent chorus, she’s a good singer. Yeah this is a great track, I wonder how well it can do – hopefully it will at least qualify anyway. Strange to think Slovenia could have a crack at winning,how out of the blue would that be?
I love the rhythm, she’s a good performer, I like watching her. A great flute solo too, how often do you get to say that? I do worry for its chances, Slovenia have no shortage of neighbours but never seem to get the benefit from neighbourly votes – with a bit of luck Western Europe will pick up the slack, especially since a lot of the Balkans aren’t even coming this year! One to watch, anyway, I hope it does really well!