Monday, November 25, 2013

Swedish Idol 2013: Friday Finals Week 9 - 22.11.2013

Not one but two themes this week for the four remaining contestants: original songs and jury's choice.  The first part is a great idea - songwriting collaborations between the contestants and established Swedish songwriters (although if certain tabloid reports were to be believed, the contestants' involvement in the songs may not have been as extensive as originally suggested). However, it gives a more accurate glimpse into how the contestants may develop as artists, outwith the talent-karaoke format.  

Jens: "Killing Me" (co-written with Tony Nilsson)

Tony Nilsson is of course pop royalty in Sweden and in the hands of another artist, say, Darin or Danny, this song would have been an uptempo electro-dance stomper.  With Jens, this didn't work for me and his voice grated on the chorus.  He is more at home on grittier numbers and this one was clearly a very bad choice and probably sealed his fate.

Kevin Walker: "Dreaming" (co-written with Thomas G:son and Peter Boström)

When I saw those names = *SONG CONTEST ENTRY KLAXON*

Either that or an Idol winner's song perhaps?  Kevin had serious vocal wobbles on the low notes but he nailed that vital high note towards the end of the song which curiously lacked the required key change.  This song was a good fit for his style though, and will no doubt turn up on his album of granny-friendly tunes :)

Erik: "Wild" (co-written with Oscar Holter)

This was my favourite of the night, and a perfect fit for Erik's cool persona.  Like a Swedish distant cousin of Hurts.  I liked this this soulful electro number the minute I heard it, and I hope it gets a release at some point as it has 'hit' written all over it. 

Elin: "The Fire" (co-written with Jakke Erixson)

A catchy and commercial reggae-flavoured number, however as with many of her other performances, showed up her vocal limitations. 

Jens: "Flicka Med Guld" (original artist Thåström)

A very good match for his voice, which just shows up how wrong the original song choice was. 

Kevin: "Free Fallin'" (original artist Tom Petty)

Didn't he sing this earlier on in the competition?  Or did someone else?  It always turns up in Idol of course, and this week Kevin blandly grinned his way through a Kevinized version of the song.  In the infamous words of Simon Cowell, "distinctly average" is the best way to describe the singing footballer.

Erik: "If You Go Away" (original artist Jacques Brel)

An often-covered classic, which Erik completely brought up to date.  This was a vocally impeccable performance which made Alexander Bard cry.  Awww!

Elin: "Roar" (original artist Katy Perry)

Something very current, but as with Jens earlier, the rough and ready vocals were pretty painful in places. 

Bottom two time!  Jens and Kevin.  Jens goes home, and Kevin is saved yet again. Is Sweden having a laugh here? 

Above: Elin, Erik and Kevin celebrate.

I seriously hope that Erik wins the whole thing now.  With three contestants remaining, he's about the best prospect as a recording artist that the contest has left. 

(All pictures courtesy of Aftonbladet)

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