Sunday, January 16, 2011

ESC 2011: Norway, first quarter-final

OK, here we go ... ! The third rerun is on as we speak, so I'm kind of blogging it live anyway now. :-) Let's see. The presenters ... Anne Rimmen seems a little stiff to start with, and I'm not sure I'm a fan of that dress. But it's the first show, she's got time to improve, she'll get better. :-) Per Sundnes is ... himself.

Believe it or not, but I actually didn't check out the results last night, so I haven't heard how it turned out ... I avoided it on purpose, so that watching the show today would be a bit more fun. :-D So this will be ... interesting, if that's the word I want. ;-)

Entry #1: Carina Dahl, Hanne Sørvaag and Nanna Martorell - Guns & Boys, performed by Carina Dahl. Daughter of Diesel Dahl, if anyone cares, which I hope nobody does. Meh. Her voice would have been interesting if it had been stronger. Tacky outfit and kind of tacky performance. Song annoying more than anything else, with stupid title and stupid lyrics. I would never vote for this and I would be embarrassed if we sent this to Düsseldorf. Which we won't.

Entry #2: Jim André Bergsted - Daisy, performed by Use Me, the singer's own band. That's a good thing, at least. This is a band made up entirely of teenagers, and it shows ... first and foremost in the singer's voice. He sounds really young. They also seem a little nervous ... but I wouldn't hold that against them. The song is kind of bland, not much of a hook to it, but melodious. I won't be able to hum it ten seconds after they're done playing, but this still isn't bad, just ... mediocre. But so far definitely the best entry. ;-)

Entry #3: Cecilie Larsen - Vardlokk, performed by Helene Bøksle. Who of course sings in Norwegian. Serious points for that. Also major points for singing about something other than the usual boy wants girl or vice versa shit that is the usual fare in the contest; this song is about the confrontation, a thousand years ago, between Christianity and our old religion. Bøksle is very pretty and has a gorgeous voice ... she would get us some points just on being so beautifully Norwegian. The song has some really good ethnic elements too. It's also quite catchy - more so than Alvedansen - and has a beautiful melody. I like this a lot ... new favorite, I would probably have voted for this if I had been watching last night.

Entry #4: Magne Almås and Petter Øien - Alt du vil ha, performed by Sie Gubba, a band where the composer and songwriter are on guitar and vocals. So, points for that, + for Norwegian lyrics. But what else? Well, the song is sort of charming in a rustic way and it's pretty catchy, but again, a bit bland. I don't think this style of poppy country rock will go down too well in the international finals. It would probably just sink without a trace. But as I always say, all I really ask from the Norwegian entry is that we won't make total fools of ourselves. And we wouldn't with this song ... it's perfectly alright, just nothing special. I have nothing against it, but also don't have high hopes for it.

Entry #5: Gatas Parlament and Jester - Jobbe litt mindre og tjene litt mer, performed by Gatas Parlament. These guys are a rap group with left wing views, sometimes rather radical. Their name means The Parliament of the Street. I know, politics aren't allowed in the ESC. But this song supposedly isn't very political, they claim it's more generic. We'll see. I can't imagine they have any chance whatsoever of getting to Düsseldorf anyway, so no worries. :-) Umm ... I'm not sure how they can call this rap. I'm not sure what I would call it. But add one letter and you may be on to something. The lyrics are stupid and immature - definitely not political, because in politics you need to not be a total idiot. Blech. Fuck off. I would never vote for this and I hope no one else did either.

Entry #6: Christine Dancke - Trenger mer, performed by Sichelle ... who has a totally stupid name (it's pronounced like seashell - I know ...) but is pretty and charming and shouldn't have her parents' bad choices held against her. :-) She was in our national contest two years ago too, but didn't get anywhere. Better luck this time? Well ... possibly. She looks very pretty, although her dress is perhaps not the ideal choice. Her voice is kind of breathy ... not that strong. But it fits the song, which is a pretty standard pop ditty. I like it in the sense that I see no reason not to like it. But it's not a winner. Too bad. :-(

Entry #7: Rikke Normann - Not That Easy, performed by Rikke Normann and Åste Sem. Performing their own material, kudos for that. These girls have been involved in the contest before, they were backing singers for Mira Craig last year. I'll believe that. :-) They are really good singers and very confident on stage. Great outfits. I love the brunette's hair (not sure which is which :-). And the song is ... possibly the best so far, relatively catchy and with a good beat to the melody. If I could have voted I would probably have voted for these two as well. A quality entry. They could do a Maria in Düsseldorf ... not win, but get lots of good press and end up somewhere like top five.

That's the songs! I wonder what they've come up with for the interval entertainment. Sigrid looking for a man at Ørland ... meh ... where's the music?? Oh, here it comes. Alexander Rybak and Keep of Kalessin!! LOL!! Brilliant, I love it. Check out Alexander's t-shirt. :-D Fantastic! :-D

And now - the results. Eek. There are four places to be won in this first quarter-final - two to the semifinal and two to the final. Let's see. :-)

Use Me - Daisy
Sie Gubba - Alt du vil ha

Helene Bøksle - Vardlokk
Åste and Rikke - Not That Easy

Yay!! Happy! The two best songs went to the final, and the two semifinalists aren't half bad either. They are songs that have no chance of winning in May, but that we wouldn't disgrace ourselves with either. So ... good results this time round. I'm good with this. And next Saturday I will definitely be watching ... !! ;-)

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