Road to Copenhagen 2014: Carl Espen – “Silent Storm” (Norway)

Returning to Scandinavia, Norway are gearing up another strong attempt to bring the contest back home, having last won in 2009. I always have a special place in my heart for Norway, the 2010 contest in Oslo was the first I went to, and I have such fond memories of it. Bloody expensive though!

NorwayNorway will likely never shift that tag of having the most “nul points” results in Eurovision history, now there are so many countries participating, but it hasn’t stopped them winning the contest three times. Unpredictable is perhaps the best way to describe their performances in the results, but they have a strong qualification record.

Despite a bad result on home soil in 2010, and a shock DNQ result in Dusseldorf the following year, Norway have been making big improvements since then. Tooji qualified in 2012, albeit narrowly, and the incredible Margaret Berger came as far as 4th place in Malmö. People are talking that the winner of this year’s Norsk Melodi Grand Prix might go even better than that.

carl epsen norwayRather than pursuing the ultra modern approach of Margaret, Carl Espen performs a much more stripped-down ballad, perhaps the most striking ballad of the contest year.

It’s performed with great tenderness and emotion, matching the inner turmoil of the lyrics. Perhaps the biggest obstacle to this being a clear favourite for the victory is that Carl himself isn’t quite the captivating performer you might expect. He just seems a bit deadpan; granted it wouldn’t be much of a silent storm if he was sobbing on his knees and roaring the lyrics, but I’m not quite sure how it will play out.

Not that there’s an obvious fix to that niggle, but we’ll see what happens. I certainly wouldn’t be sad if Norway win, even if it for variety’s sake a non-Scandinavian country should get a shot.

For reviews of ALL the competing entries in the 2014 contest, as well as coverage of all the national finals and all sorts of other news, please visit my Copenhagen 2014 Hub by clicking the link, or the “Copenhagen 2014” menu on the top banner, or the “#Joinus” crystal on the left-hand bar.

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Filed under Copenhagen 2014, Eurovision, Music, Reviews

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