Wednesday, April 18, 2018

EUROVISION 2018 REVIEW: LATVIA, LITHUANIA, RUSSIA, CROATIA


Latvia - Laura Rizzotto - Funny girl
Latvian-Brazilian Laura Rizzotto (23) has lived her life so far between Minnesota, Rio de Janeiro, New York and Latvia. She has studied in Berklee (Boston), California and Columbia Universities so she certainly knows music. And no doubt she's talented singer and songwriter. That doesn't however hide the fact her Funny girl needs some what acquired taste for this kind of music. Generally this could be my cup of tea so to speak, but no. This is dull and uninteresting. Live it works a bit better but about one minute mark my attention drifts elsewhere and I find myself checking the contents of my fridge while she's still singing her song. Very long three minutes. 2/10

Lithuania - Ieva Zasimauskaitè - When we're old
I managed to ignore this song all those eternal weeks the Lithuanian selection was going on - maybe because I didn't follow it live and just checked the videos later, if even that. I did watch the final, and all of sudden I fell in love with this song. So fragile, simple. I checked the Lithuanian version and was under a spell. Even the remix fits and ads something to the mix. The best Lithuanian entry to date by far!
Ieva (24) was 5th time lucky in the national selection and while being somewhat ignored by the fandom in the bubble could become a real surprise in Lisbon. This is touching, real with a message and if she performs it well when it matters, who knows? This deserves the final more than most. What else can I say? I love all the versions of this little pearl. 9/10

Russia - Julia Samoylova - I won't break
Julia Samoylova (29) should have been there already last year. Or really she shouldn't be here this time either. Last year used as a propaganda weapon between Russia and Ukraine her presence this year feels even more out of place than last year. Her first live performance underlines the whole madness of this affair. Russia would have so much better to offer if they played by the cards to win or do well with music alone. Not propaganda. This put aside, judging only her voice and presence, and the song's quality this has no place in the final, but sadly will steal some other better one's place because this is Russia. One can only hope for justice and Russia staying in the semi as with this package they don't deserve anything else. The song has zero originality no matter how deep you dig. 2/10

Croatia - Franka - Crazy
Last lady in her twenties in this post is Franka Batelić (25). Her career started in a talent show in 2007 with a win. She also tried to get to Eurovision already in 2009 without luck but went on to win local Dancing with Stars before retiring from the business. Now she's back as internally chosen artist. Crazy has somewhat disappointed the expectations and no wonder. Great production values and video for sure but... what about the song? Echoes of Sam Brown's Stop come to mind immediately and that's just about it. Long and rather boring quite depressing three minutes that can of course be hidden by a stellar staging and performance but I doubt it's enough to make this qualify. Which is a shame as it seems Croatian tv really tried this time. Sometimes too much trying leads nowhere but sterility... 4/10

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