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Czech Republic CZECH REPUBLIC 2020 - Benny Cristo - Kemama

How do you rate this entry?

  • 12

    8 5.6%
  • 10

    10 6.9%
  • 8

    17 11.8%
  • 7

    16 11.1%
  • 6

    19 13.2%
  • 5

    11 7.6%
  • 4

    18 12.5%
  • 3

    11 7.6%
  • 2

    9 6.3%
  • 1

    10 6.9%
  • 0

    15 10.4%

  • Total voters
    144

escYOUnited

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September 28, 2009
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1,355
Czech-Republic-scaled.jpg


 

HayashiM

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January 26, 2019
Posts
3,603
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Prague, Czech Republic
@Ritararita @VirginiaVision - any chance one of you could be interested in being a part of the :cz: national jury in the Eurovision 2020 Online edition? We still have one more spot free, if you are in, just drop a post in this thread (this is a link). :)

@VirginiaVision - I suppose you might have returned back home to the :us: by now, but we can temporarily adopt you as a :cz: anyway. I hope you are ok, wherever you are :)
 
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NemesisNick

Active member
Joined
June 2, 2012
Posts
992
Location
Dorchester, Dorset, United Kingdom
Czech Republic - Benny Cristo "Kemama”
What on Earth, in the world, is this? This sounds to me like a cross between reggae and rap. It’s obvious that the video is a promotional one, so one can only speculate what this would have sounded like sung live, and how this would have been staged, in Rotterdam. Going by the video, this is one of my least liked songs that would have been performed in the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 Second Semi-Final, and I’d have almost certainly disliked it equally performed live. This is a song I’d have preferred not to have qualified.
 

EscUKFan

Well-known member
Joined
August 5, 2015
Posts
514
Czech Republic - Benny Cristo "Kemama”
What on Earth, in the world, is this? This sounds to me like a cross between reggae and rap. It’s obvious that the video is a promotional one, so one can only speculate what this would have sounded like sung live, and how this would have been staged, in Rotterdam. Going by the video, this is one of my least liked songs that would have been performed in the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 Second Semi-Final, and I’d have almost certainly disliked it equally performed live. This is a song I’d have preferred not to have qualified.
:oops:

Ok MADAME
 
Last edited:

tuorem

Well-known member
Joined
January 17, 2012
Posts
9,572
Location
GN-z11
My review:

CZECH REPUBLIC 2020 - Benny Cristo - Kemama: "original yet muddled"

I was a bit scared to enter this thread because I voiced my opinion about "Kemama" way too loudly and crudely earlier this year, and since cutie Hayashi is most likely the only Czech left not to have blocked me out, I should value his leniency. xheart

Back to the topic, the two main favourites to win the Czech NF this year were my bottom 2 (what a coincidence), so no wonder I was a tad disappointed by the outcome. The selection was great though and I still listen to three songs from it regularly (Barbora, Karelll and We All Poop, honey!). Now that the upset has passed and in hindsight, I'm relieved Olga Lounová failed because her song - although pleasing to listen to - was way too conventional compared to "Kemama". The winning entry is an interesting mixture of influences and I like that there is a piece of Africa in it; I mean - whether one loves it or hates it - the Czechs definitely brought something new to the contest, as they did last year. Diversity does not mean quality of course, but personally I prefer when a Eurovision edition features different genres and nations take risks rather than have forty different shades of plastic pop, so in this regard I applaud that choice.

Composition-wise, there is a distinct atmosphere and framework. There are layers arrangements-wise and for sure there are a lot instruments at work: guitars, synths, brass instruments, different sorts of drums and electronic beats, as well as that characteristic African instrument whose name I've forgotten (sorry about that!). I was part of those who thought a revamp was needed when it won the selection, but I guess Benny overthought it and got lost in it when trying to please both sides. The final result is not shameful at all, but it did not improve the song the way I wanted. Overall, even after several listenings, I find it difficult to "read" or maybe I don't use the proper prism: yes it does stand out, yes it sets an atmosphere, but it remains messy for some reason and - most of all - the feeling that it plateaus after the first chorus remains imo; there are pre-choruses and a bridge, yet everything blends in and the chorus does not hit as it should, I think the entry would have benefited from a clearer structure, maybe less drums at some point, or neater breaks.

Prediction-wise, this is a big question mark for me. It could have been "Limits 2.0" like it could have been "My Turn 2.0" or "Friend Of A Friend 2.0"... The staging may have increased chances of qualification, but in a way, I believe Czechs would have struggled to achieve a decent placing, not because of the genre per se, but due to the composition itself. Not everything has to be bombastic or have pop codes, I'm just doubtful about the lasting first impression of the package as is.

Benny will be back next year, and I'm glad that Czechs will see their star on stage in Rotterdam. As far as I'm concerned, I actually am genuinely looking forward to his next entry, which hopefully I'll find right up my alley. I guess he should listen to his intuition first and foremost and not overcook things, for the series of revamps was trying for all the parties involved and it's impossible to please everyone anyway. Fingers crossed for you guys! :)

P.S.: I felt the need to say that - while I don't like "Kemama" - I ranked it very high when I was part of the French jury of the forum's online Eurovision 2020 contest. I valued originality, so it had to be up there for me.
 
Last edited:

HayashiM

Veteran
Joined
January 26, 2019
Posts
3,603
Location
Prague, Czech Republic
My review:

CZECH REPUBLIC 2020 - Benny Cristo - Kemama: "original yet muddled"

I was a bit scared to enter this thread because I voiced my opinion about "Kemama" way too loudly and crudely earlier this year, and since cutie Hayashi is most likely the only Czech left not to have blocked me out, I should value his leniency. xheart

Back to the topic, the two main favourites to win the Czech NF this year were my bottom 2 (what a coincidence), so no wonder I was a tad disappointed by the outcome. The selection was great though and I still listen to three songs from it regularly (Barbora, Karelll and We All Poop, honey!). Now that the upset has passed and in hindsight, I'm relieved Olga Lounová failed because her song - although pleasing to listen to - was way too conventional compared to "Kemama". The winning entry is an interesting mixture of influences and I like that there is a piece of Africa in it; I mean - whether one loves it or hates it - the Czechs definitely brought something new to the contest, as they did last year. Diversity does not mean quality of course, but personally I prefer when a Eurovision edition features different genres and nations take risks rather than have forty different shades of plastic pop, so in this regard I applaud that choice.

Composition-wise, there is a distinct atmosphere and framework. There are layers arrangements-wise and for sure there are a lot instruments at work: guitars, synths, brass instruments, different sorts of drums and electronic beats, as well as that characteristic African instrument whose name I've forgotten (sorry about that!). I was part of those who thought a revamp was needed when it won the selection, but I guess Benny overthought it and got lost in it when trying to please both sides. The final result is not shameful at all, but it did not improve the song the way I wanted. Overall, even after several listenings, I find it difficult to "read" or maybe I don't use the proper prism: yes it does stand out, yes it sets an atmosphere, but it remains messy for some reason and - most of all - the feeling that it plateaus after the first chorus remains imo; there are pre-choruses and a bridge, yet everything blends in and the chorus does not hit as it should, I think the entry would have benefited from a clearer structure, maybe less drums at some point, or neater breaks.

Prediction-wise, this is a big question mark for me. It could have been "Limits 2.0" like it could have been "My Turn 2.0" or "Friend Of A Friend 2.0"... The staging may have increased chances of qualification, but in a way, I believe Czechs would have struggled to achieve a decent placing, not because of the genre per se, but due to the composition itself. Not everything has to be bombastic or have pop codes, I'm just doubtful about the lasting first impression of the package as is.

Benny will be back next year, and I'm glad that Czechs will see their star on stage in Rotterdam. As far as I'm concerned, I actually am genuinely looking forward to his next entry, which hopefully I'll find right up my alley. I guess he should listen to his intuition first and foremost and not overcook things, for the series of revamps was trying for all the parties involved and it's impossible to please everyone anyway. Fingers crossed for you guys! :)

P.S.: I felt the need to say that - while I don't like "Kemama" - I ranked it very high when I was part of the French jury of the forum's online Eurovision 2020 contest. I valued originality, so it had to be up there for me.

Thank you for this review (and all the others as well of course, they are always a delight to read, whether we agree or not :) ).

I know I can be annoyingly pessimistic at times, but let's not expect too much. If Benny comes up with something at least on par with Kemama next year, I shall be quite happy. I don't appreciate any other of his songs, which is a shame to say, because Benny's chill personality is to die for :) So, let's keep our fingers crossed.

Oh, I noticed the high placement of Kemama in your jury ranking, it really surprised me -> Thank you! :) *

But of course, All the Blood and White and Black Holes were the ones with the real top10-ish potential imo, I still listen to those songs very often. Such a shame. Can't wait for the next open selection's offer! :)

* disclaimer: any eventual future Raiven's or Rona Nishliu's concerts in :fr: are NOT in any way related to this post, do not imply any possible bribe from the :cz: jury, and are strictly coincidental.
 

tuorem

Well-known member
Joined
January 17, 2012
Posts
9,572
Location
GN-z11
@HayashiM You're so adorable your Lordship xlove Thank you for your nice words, you know I'm aware I did the most with some of my comments earlier this year and it ruffled some feathers, so I'm glad it didn't put you off me. I never meant to be mean. I'll resume my reviews tomorrow.

Of course I hope you'll be content with the brand new entry, Czech fans getting behind their own entry is heartwarming and more significant than one would think considering the positive evolution of your nation since you came back. Without the pressure of an open selection, maybe Benny will surprise ;) let's wait and see. Anyway, it's good to have a popular figure such as him represent you, the viewing ratings and general interest may well increase next year.

*note: thank you for the sponsored post, I will keep quiet about the schmoney I have to send your way. Ms Barbora and you are warmly invited to Paris for a private party, we need a Hollywood-glamour couple on the red carpet. Rumour has it our dear JoJo Pápai :hu: may join and burst into song. Don't worry, there will be bouncers to prevent Tom Leeb from randomly ruining the festivities, your safety is guaranteed.
 

Lenny1993

Member
Joined
February 11, 2015
Posts
454
Meh. Last year was better :(
 

Milos-BC

Well-known member
Joined
September 28, 2009
Posts
12,238
Location
Serbia
Much better than his 2021 entry. This one reminded me of those typical songs that one would hear in FIFA games. He would've qualified quite easily in 2020, I believe.

6 points.
 
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