Tuesday, January 27, 2009

ESC 2009: Norway, first quarter-final

OK, am finally watching Saturday's *cough* big event now. Some thoughts, far from random ...

Per Sundnes - not my favorite, but OK. I can deal. Maria Haukaas Storeng - nice dress. I like them much much more than the previous presenter duo (Synnøve Svabø and Stian Barsnes Simonsen - those two sucked and no mistake). KAS and trilltrall did tell me that the voting was open from the beginning of the show, and - gasp! - I see that it's true! I disagree with that for two reasons. One, that's not how it's done on the international level. Why not keep it simple? And two, shouldn't we, umm, like, listen to the songs before we decide whether we want to vote for them? (I know, you can hear them on NRK online. But you know what I mean.) This is kind of a setup ... all the participants probably had their moms and all their friends and whoever texting like mad to rack up their votes. Yuck. Why can't it be just one vote per cell phone number, or IP address or whatever?? Oh yeah, someone's making money off all us idiots who vote, that's right ... >:-(

To see the performances on Youtube, click on the song titles.

Entry #1: Lars-Erik Westbye & Mariann Thomassen - U Look Good, performed by Surferosa. Meh. This band are really big in Norway, FYI. And famous for the crazy outfits the singer wears. Ooh, crazy outfits, she is soo out there. Sheesh. And yeah, I see she did wear something fugly on Saturday too, as usual. But the song ... meh. It's OK, it doesn't have much personality. The energy's pretty good and the performance kind of fun BUT Mariann sounds pretty unprofessional, like she's getting out of breath after the second verse. That's not good. This song may end up winning the whole thing - I mean the national final!!! not the whole real thing!!! :-D - just because it's Surferosa. Because, yeah, they're big. And they have the kind of fans who may think the ESC is kinda cool. But if we do send this, we won't get through the semifinal in Moscow. Since they did get through this round, think before you vote in the semi. Srsly.

Entry #2: Hilde Marstrander - Men, Men, Men!, performed by Chicas del Coro. Umm ... now I don't know what to say. o_O Their name is Spanish and they wear odd dresses and the song is supposed to be a 1950s pastiche, I think. But with that name viewers are going to think Iberian more than 50s. Have we not learned that this latino shit does not fly for us?? The song isn't completely hopeless. It's catchy, sure ... I mean, it's not my thing, but it is kinda catchy. But it doesn't fly coming from us. This is Norway. Why can't we just wake up and smell the coffee??! Growl. OK, so ... kinda fun song with kinda fun costumes. BUT they totally can't sing. I mean, seriously. They sound like it's open mike night at an amateur club. Aren't these women some sort of ... I don't know, I thought I'd heard they do this professionally?? And have for years? They sound incredibly nervous. No way can we send these two to Moscow. The song will probably do really badly there ... but whichever song we pick, we've got to have someone who can perform it better than these chicas. And sing it better ...

Entry #3: Robin Nordahl & Thomas Ewel with the 'band members' - Party, performed by KeSera featuring Anita Hegerland. (<-- Ooh, I guess.) First rap song in Norwegian ESC history. But I hope they don't think they're the first internationally. >:-) Erm ... amateur night continues. A happy upbeat song, I suppose. But seriously ... if we send this, we're screwed. So it's a good feeling to know that they have no chance. I'd know that without having heard the results. This is a couple of kids playing around. Hegerland's contribution is cool and seems to belong in ... well, a much better song. Schizo. Bad entry.

Entry #4: Trond Andreassen and Christian Bloom - Two of a Kind, performed by Espen Hana. Oh, this sounds like a ripoff ... !! They've totally stolen that intro bit from somewhere. Oh, it's going to annoy me so much that I can't remember where it's from ... ! :-D This is definitely my favorite so far. Well, since I haven't liked any of the others, I guess that's not saying much. ;-) But this is a good melody ... an old-fashioned tune in the crooner style, and it may go down well, sincerity is essential in this contest now that the Easterners are such a big part of it. His voice isn't that good but he does a good job with what he's got ... vocally, at least. His performance otherwise is pretty awful. I cringe, I can hardly look at his face. I know he's an actor, but this isn't acting, this is scenery-chewing IMO.

Entry #5: Christian Ingebrigtsen and Laila Samuelsen - Sweeter Than A Kiss, performed by Charite. OMG I hate her outfit ... !!!!! WTF is she wearing??! :-o Ouch ... !! Song ruined for me now, please disregard my comments. Erm ... pretty girl, good stage presence, OK voice, but doesn't use it very well IMO. She's all breathy and it sounds fake. The song is OK as far as it goes but without any real potential. No personality, no hook. Compare this with, say, Molitva and then you'll see why the latter won and this song wouldn't stand a chance. It doesn't stand a chance here either. OMG what is she wearing ... !!!

Entry #6: Svein Gundersen and Rolf Mokkelbost - Det vart en storm, performed by Thomas Brøndbo. A baby Brøndbo! OK, so ... not my thing, then. It's almost completely safe to assume. I'm sorry, but ... well, that's just how it is. No accounting for taste. Yuck, another awful outfit. A cardigan that's too small - why would he want to wear that? And it doesn't even go with the rest of the outfit. o_O Not really relevant, I know, but ... still. I see it, I can't help that. The song, you say? Music boring, lyrics one giant cliché. I was a god (or boat?) on the ocean of life, now I have capsized again ... ?? Please, spare me. But for the right crowd this will be catchy ... and if even half of his big brother's fans vote for him, he's a shoe-in. Please, spare us!! :-( This song has no chance whatsoever in Moscow. I guarantee it. This entry is 15 years old.

Entry #7: Hanne Sørvaag and Harry Sommerdahl - Tricky, performed by Velvet. This was the only song I was in time to catch on Saturday. Didn't like it then, don't like it now. Catchy? Yees ... if you like this kind of thing. But guess what: Europe doesn't like this kind of thing. Again, send this and we're screwed. This song is excellent proof that some people just never learn. Hanne Sørvaag also co-wrote last year's German entry. It crashed and burned SO badly. And here she is with the same song over again. I mean ... WTF? Some people never learn. This is a blatant Spice Girls ripoff, only ten years too late. Kind of sad to have to watch this. They wobble in their synchronized 'sexy' pose, they dance like you've seen a million times before, and they sing a song that everyone in the Western world already knows by heart ... with lyrics in English that they don't pronounce all that well. Yes, sad. It's lucky for them that they got this slot. I already know that they got through. With the level these entries have been on I'm not entirely sure I can say I disagree.

I like what they've been doing with the intermission entertainments for the past couple of years ... they track down an old winner and have the song performed by a huge choir onstage, until at the climax the original performer of that song comes on stage to sing along. Tonight: Mitt liv, performed by Kate Gulbrandsen in Brussels in 1987. I've seen it better, but I like the idea.

The results - and in this quarter-final only three songs will be cut; two songs will go to the semifinal and two directly to our national final. So let's see.

Semifinalists:
Espen Hana - Two of a Kind
Surferosa - U Look Good

Finalists:
Velvet - Tricky
Thomas Brøndbo - Det vart en storm

So ... two finalists who don't stand a snowball's chance in Moscow. Now that's what ESC in Norway is really all about!!! :-D

4 comments:

Audhild said...

Yeah Norway zero points ;-)

Leisha Camden said...

LOL!! That's us alright! :-D

Calyx said...

Leisha! Shall we write a song for next year? It couldn't possibly be worse than the majority of stuff out there. I do the music, you do the words, and we find some singer and ban him/her from dancing. What do you think?

Leisha Camden said...

Maybe we should ... !! Have you seen the movie Livet är en schlager?? :-D