Sunday, February 14, 2010

Melodifestivalen Deltävling 2: Sandviken, 13.02.10

(Sorry for publishing this so late, purely for the reason that my blogging time's been a bit limited this week).

It was inevitable that for me, this week's MF would be a massive anti-climax after last week's joyous opening heat. Having listened to the one-minute clips on Friday hadn't given me much inspiration either. But Melodifestivalen as an event is always greater than the sum of its parts, and sometimes you have to focus on other things.

For this week, ladies and gentlemen, was all about ....Måns.

Måns in the ladies' loos. Måns dancing with Christine. Måns in a nice outfit (the same could not be said for Christine Meltzer's horrific styling this week) and how cute was he with that nice little quiff!!!

This week Måns and Christine did a little sketch impersonating MF presenters over the last few years, and if you're familiar with them then you may have found this amusing: and yes, I giggled at Måns' impression of the legendary Kristian Luuk.

But what about this week's songs???

Eric Saade - Manboy
A purple shirt, a key change and a George Sampson shower moment at the end. This will be an absolute radio hit and I was in no doubt that it would be an absolute qualifier either. The downside was that it was a little too calculated to appeal to certain demographics of the audience, which isn’t the fault of young Eric but the co-writer Fredrik Kempe, who for me is increasingly personifying the definition of smugness. Now I know that FK has written his share of MF goodies over the years, but enough is enough. There is a real possibility that he will be competing against himself this year, Ralph Siegel-style.

However, on this one showing Eric would appear to have promoted himself all the way into the Swedish boy-pop premiership, helped along no doubt by a high profile romance with Molly Sanden, who is currently competing in "Let's Dance".

Andra Generationen & Dogge Doggelito - Hippare hoppare
Aah, the return of FYROM’s finest (!) This time dragging once-credible rapper Dogge down with them. ‘Balkan reggaeton’, indeed. Which crashed my computer and I therefore missed three-quarters of...

Anna-Maria Espinosa - Innan alla ljusen brunnit ut
From the brief clip of I saw, it all looked very dark and she was styled like a modern-day Edith Piaf. Not too memorable a song either, but it has introduced me to her music which is actually a lot perkier than this song would suggest. Check out "If I Had A Little Moonlight" which is like Moneybrother with female vocals - top stuff.

Highlights & MiSt - Come and get me now
Strangely enough, there was something I liked about this song and I would probably listen to this after the contest. However the main problem for me was MiSt - I didn’t like her and I didn’t see the point of them being there. I liked the singer, but the military jacket was a bit pointless. This of course was the "web joker" but I can’t see them trying that idea again if it gets this kind of result.

Pauline - Sucker for love
This week’s wildcard entry. No problems with her vocals - and she had that retro-cool Noisettes vibe going on, also a little reminiscent of VV Brown which is a good thing. She was fun and quirky, and very distinctively styled, but I’m a sucker for a memorable tune - where was it? I wasn't sure at this stage whether she would qualify or not.

Above: Pauline: great style! (photo courtesy of

Andreas Johnson - We can work it out
Green jacket, light beams and a big swaying ballad in the style of "Rule The World", don’t you think? When the whole audience started waving lights around, it was at that moment that Globen was a certainty. However I wasn’t too thrilled about this song - on first hearings it was a bit mediocre, nowhere as great as "Glorious" nor as memorable as "Sing For Me" and "A Little Bit of Love". (Although a couple of days later the tune popped into my head, so I guess it's maybe more memorable than I first thought).

Kalle Moraeus & Orsa Spelmän - Underbart
More swaying, this time of a folky nature. They may not be the most visually appealing act ever at MF, but there was something very sweet and simple about this, as with much of his other material in the Svensk-folkmusik tradition. It got a massive cheer in the stadium, and I had it as a qualifier, but to which round I didn’t know.

Hanna Lindblad - Manipulated
By this stage of the proceedings I was feeling pretty grumpy, and bearing the brunt of it was the final contestant Hanna Lindblad, who went all out to be contemporary in a GaGa/Britney style but it left me cold, purely because I wanted, and expected, more. No doubt it will be a massive hit and may grow on me and I may love it in a couple of weeks....but then again I may not.

No Dolph on presenting duty this week, but the superhero on a Segway scooter kept us all entertained on his mission whilst the votes were being counted.

This week's interval act was Glada Hudik theatre, a very special group of people who provided an inspirational moment with the song "Sverige" written by Joakim Berg.

Then along the way something very un-SVT-like happened: the webstream crashed, forcing us all over to the Sveriges Radio stream. Anyway "Manboy" won heat 2 outright, so Eric's off to Globen. I already have mixed feelings about this song and am a bit concerned that this may cancel Ola out, or they may cancel each other out, or there may be room in the Globen schlager universe for both of them?

There is also room in Globen for Andreas once again, as he took his revenge for the "One Love" debacle. (But we'll just blame Carola for that anyway).

Above: This week's winners Eric and Andreas take a bubbly-shower. (photo courtesy of

Kalle & his Spelmän made it to Andra Chansen: trying not to throw in a pun here about "fiddling" the votes (!) but for me its qualification was never in any doubt.

I'm happy for Pauline too: she did perform very well, but I wish the song was more memorable though, and I can't see her making it out of Andra Chansen to Globen.

All in all I found week two to be a huge disappointment: next week has got to be better....because it's Darin and Alcazar week!!

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