Stockholm, 5 March 2022

Hallå(baloo?), dear Eurovisionista’s, welcome to the first installement of ESCUnited’s Sweden reviews. As you may know, Sweden will host their brand-new semifinals tonight, where the 3rd/4th placers of each heat will get a final chance at reaching the Final of Melodifestivalen 2022.

The semifinals replace the second chance round formerly known as Andra Chansen. Previously, the eight second chancers would square off in production-aligned duels, where the act with the most votes would advance. SVT have now revamped their second chance round into semifinals: Each semifinal contains four second chancers, and the top two from each group advance to the final.

The group distribution is as follows:

 

Obviously, this being a review post, this means that we’ll have a deep dive into the warrens of our minds, delivering misguided opinions and faulty hot takes up the wazoo.

As such, here’s the disclaimer: “The opinions in this review article belong to the person quoted and do NOT represent the opinions of ESCUnited as a whole. “

On today’s panel we find:

  • Arnaud Abadie, our French correspondent here to help hone is English
  • Boris Meersman, our Belgian critic and one-man David Mitchell tribute band.
  • Connor Terry, our precious Interviewer Extraordinare from Oklahoma.
  • James Maude, our resident drunk metalhead guncle, originally from Yorkshire
  • Roy Postema, our Dutch correspondent and starring Mattitude cast member.
  • Sean Tarbuck, our second-in-command and annointed musical nerd from Derbyshire.
  • Tyler Griffith, our American correspondent and resident review monkey.

What reviews do this motley crew have in store for you today? Well, let’s jump in without any further ado.

(If you want to hear the songs, right-click the banners and open in a new tab)

 

 

Arnaud – 6.5

“It’s a very generic song with a quote ‘already heard’ message about self acceptance, but this message is really important and must be heard often. Tone performs it well, and puts her soul into it to me”

Boris – 6

“Unlike a certain Australian gremlin, Sekelius begins her Gay Rights anthem by reaching out to her audience, asking them questions whether they’ve ever felt different, before defiantly stating that their opinions don’t matter, as millions of (LGBT+) people are suffering, but don’t worry, if you’re questioning yourself, ~*TONE*~ is here to show you that yes, you can live life your way.  This is what effective inclusivity looks like, take notes peons. Sadly, I’m more of a melody-over-message type of guy, and Tone’s melody I find to be quite middling. “My way” sounds like generic campy Drag Race schlager during the chorus, while the verses are reminiscent of Sunday afternoon news bulletins. The act is likewise suboptimal. A couple of writhing dancers in pyjamas, and a late-game dress reveal might eke out a morsel of strained symbolism, but as show-stopping tools they’re ineffective and cliché. If Tone wants to seriously make a career out of this, I’d advise her to take the Melfest  experience at heart, gain a few more levels in Bard, and return later having grown into a full songstress. Right now, she’s a guppy swimming around in a very crowded piranha tank.”

Connor – 6

“This song has taken a very long time to grow on me, and I think I love the song more when I don’t pay attention to the live performance. In studio I connect with the song meaning and lyrics and enjoy it, but on stage Tone unfortunately seems so stagnant and statuesque….it makes no sense with the high beats per minute (BPM) of the song. Something with this BPM needs either stronger choreo, more movement on stage, or a different stage concept entirely so that I can’t take my eyes off her for 3 minutes.”

James – 6

“The dress change is a cool staging idea, but they’re going to have to do more with Tone than just have her step out of that dress and walk awkwardly forward a few feet to the front of the stage. Staging is this entry’s major letdown. It’s a song of defiance against the transphobes who bullied Tone, but there’s two dancers in pyjamas and a half-hearted chrysalis moment with the dress. And not much else. The track has a triumphant finale with the strings towards the end, but the staging doesn’t match it. Perhaps Tone is an inexperienced performer and lacks the confidence to tell experienced choreographers to tell her performers how to perform her story visually in a more engaging manner?”

Roy –  6

“Sure it is a tad basic, but I think it is executed quite well. Tone’s vocals are quite decent too and the chorus is definitely catchy. Not to bad for a debut in Melfest. Should this win the competition? Definitely not! There are way more interesting songs in the selection for that!”

Sean – 6

“Judging this purely on the song content, this seems like a very by-the-number pop track with the usual driving bass beat and structure, although with some nice orchestral flourishes here and there. But this is well staged, and the story behind the song cannot be ignored. These lyrics are very touching and Tone’s opportunity to share her message will be felt across Sweden, and I can only applaud that.”

Tyler –  8

“Call me an old queen, but “My Way” is the kind of LGBTQIA+ anthem that I really enjoy this national final season. It’s full of hope, it’s full of joy, and honestly the message of overcoming your own doubts and anxieties to live more true to yourself is so great to hear. I quite like this song, but I’m not giving this song a 10, because I think Tone’s vocals could be stronger, and while the dress reveal is great, I wish there was something else after reaching the smaller stage. The dancers are a good idea too, but also get dropped at the very end, so I’d almost rather they not be there or incorporated more throughout the song. Room for improvement here for sure.”

Total: 44.5/70
Highest: 8 (Tyler)
Lowest: 6 (Boris, Connor, James, Roy & Sean)
Average: 6.4


 

Arnaud – 7.5

“it’s still another Latino pop banger, it’s cheesy and may sound a bit dated, but I just love it. It definitely stands out in the selection, just like the other songs from Alvaro. Although it’s not that different from his other entries from the past years in Melfest.”

Boris – 1

This tomfoolery again? Last year I gave Alvaro a 2 for his anonymous latin pop BULLSHITE  that ALWAYS lands in AC, and now I have to deal with it AGAIN? I’m sick of this bullcrap skating by in spite of (and thanks to) to its banality. He’s going to kill off Tone or Anna too, you just KNOW it. The next time I have to face the Estrella Experience the score will be a ZERO! ”

Connor – 7

“I always love that Alvaro brings us a little bit of Latin pop to Melfest because it breaks up the monotonous pop and pop-rock roster for the national final, and this year is his strongest song yet. Plus, we finally have a song with full sentences in Spanish instead of just random short phrases! The ONLY thing that drives me nuts about the entry is the airhorn noise on the track at 1:44….why would you put that in there?!?”

James – 6

“Latin pop with Scandi production has been done to death, especially with choruses jammed with the handful of Spanish words a real estate agent from Uppsala would know (“loco,” “contigo” and that old Eurovision favorite… “fuego”). Alvaro’s strength has always been his choreography and charisma, but unfortunately, he always lands in the Second Chance rounds because he’s paired with a mediocre song. I like his performance, but I forget the song the moment it is over. Alvaro lives up to “Suave,” but beyond that initial charm and confidence there’s not much more to this entry.”

Roy – 4 

“Was tempted to do what Alvaro does every year. Just copy and paste the work we did the year before and just slightly change it a bit. The reason why I didn’t do that is because the pop-drop in this song actually makes the song better than his previous attempts. It is probably going to the final though.. Also, what’s up with these airhorns??”

Sean – 4

“If you lined up all of Alvaro Estrella’s Melfest entries and played them back to back I wouldn’t have a bloody clue which one was which. In isolation this isn’t bad and indicative of a lot of the songs that have people harking for warmer climes, and the usual summer hits that come back from the continent. But as someone who has been overexposed to Melfest and Alvaro, I’m so tired.”

Tyler –  5.5

“I’m just not a big fan of Alvaro Estrella’s songs in Melfest oops. “Suave” is fine, and I can appreciate its different sound as it goes more Latin than anything else that’s in the Swedish selection. But while it is different, I don’t really care for it too much at all. The song also feels more low energy compared to previous entries like “Vamos amigos” in 2020, and there’s only so much being in a sweater vest can do to distract me from the fact that the song is just mostly fine.”

Total: 35/70
Highest: 7.5 (Arnaud)
Lowest:  1 (Boris)
Average: 5.0 (Median: 5.5/10)


 

Arnaud – 3

“Really not my kind of music. It lacks a moment, something special. Although it’s a joyous song and he’s lovely on stage, but in Eurovision I don’t see that being top 10 of becoming a legendary moment.”

Boris – 5

“After YEARS of Denmark plagiarizing Swedish entries, I’m happy that Sweden have FINALLY paid them back by copying a Danish Eurovision song themselves. ‘Hallabaloo” has the exact same chord progression as “Allting som ingen ser” (DK92) during the pre-chorus which is hilarious to me. TAKE THAT DENMARK! HA! It’s also funny (and totally deserved) that Danne beat the crap out of Omar Rudberg and Malou Prydtz in the first heat thanks to the app vote crash. TAKE THAT SWEDEN! HA! Having said all of that, the song itself is really average though lol.”

Connor – 4

“Oh boy…this song confuses the heck out of me, and I think it has the app breaking to thank for its qualification to the semi-final. I appreciate the commitment, energy, and different genre Danne brings to the line-up – but this is most certainly not a song for me. Overall, the song is serviceable and fine, but I would be really surprised to see it escape the semi-finals in such a strong line-up. It just goes nowhere and is mildly forgettable in a lineup of 7 other songs.”

James – 6.5

“This entry gets an extra point for the appearance of a washboard used as an instrument. A common item in the New Orleans zydeco scene, but geography nerds may note that Stockholm is not quite down the I-10 from the Big Easy. Overall, “Hallabaloo” reminds me of those horrible reggae bands from the North of England that typically played at holiday camps in the 1980s (think a reggae version of the cracker calypso nightmare of Black Lace’s “Agadoo”). Now I can’t really ding a band for being the soundtrack to my nightmares, especially if they’re fun and engaging and would get you singing along under the influence of enough grappa. So we’ll settle at a 6, with pluses for fun and engagement and minuses for corniness and Dad bods dancing around the fire in Skegness.”

Roy –  4

““Ooh look, it’s another one of those veteran acts! This one is quite fun and Danne performs it in a really contagious way! The chorus though? It is just too repetitive and unimaginative.””

Sean – 5

“I don’t think I’m the target audience for this. Which is fine, let the Swedes enjoy this, I just don’t think it’s right for Eurovision of course. It’s a decent fun track and adds to the variety though, both in genre and language.”

Tyler –  6

“”Hallabaloo” is cute! That’s pretty much most of the appeal for me in this song, and I kinda like it because of it. I suppose I couldn’t quite sing a lyric from it though as it isn’t particularly memorable after the fact, but during the performance, it’s quite nice and fun! I can see why this song didn’t go direct to the final though, so there has to be a bigger sense of charm in Andra chansen to make it go through to the grand final. Would I be mad if it did and robbed other songs? Hmm, not really, wouldn’t mind it!”

Total: 33.5/70
Highest: 6.5 (James)
Lowest: 3 (Arnaud)
Average: 4.8


 

Arnaud – 6

“it’s a great song but I feel like it’s going anywhere. The melody is a bit repetitive, especially at the end when you expect something bigger than the rest of the song. I still enjoy it, yet I prefer Kingdom Come by miles!”

Boris – 5.5

“I’ve always been a partizan of the Anna Army since her glorious Melfest return, but this third installment of her rebirth trilogy is lacking in most respects. Sure, the staging looks impressive at a glance (if you ignore that it’s basically an equine screen-saver, LOL at passing up on Sacha for this), but that’s where all the intellectual capital went. Musically “Higher power” is a weak-as-piss retread of the very impressive “Kingdom Come“, with some insipid hippie hooey about cosmic seeds replacing the biblical metaphors. Melodically, we hear this sort of country folk pop around the Baltics every year, and each time it leaves me with *nothing* to savour for future listens. A disappointment from someone who had previously managed to elevate two above-average country songs into showstopping Moments.”

Connor – 6

“Now don’t get me wrong – I LOVE Anna Bergendahl, and she performs this song wonderfully. However, I just feel like this is a downgrade from “Ashes to Ashes” and “Kingdom Come”. I think the issue I have with it is that there’s no peak moment….it just drags on for 3 minutes, whereas her other entries have this massive melodic rise and fall moment especially in the final chorus.”

James – 2

“Anna Bergendahl is Eurovision’s Uncle Rico at this point (Uncle Rico being Napoleon Dynamite’s dodgy Uncle who relives his high school football days constantly). We get it, you were Sweden’s only Grand Final non-qualifier, but please stop returning to Melodifestivalen with dated vaguely religious empowerment anthems written by mercenaries like G:son. Anna, we are not going to take the bet you can throw that football over them mountains! Sweden is okay that you didn’t make the Grand Final, and anyone who devalues you because of that is an asshole. Anna, you shouldn’t have a point to prove, and fans should stop baiting you with what has obviously become a sore point for you over the years when it shouldn’t be. To quote Napoleon Dynamite, “Grandma just called. She said you should go home because you’re ruining everyone’s lives and eating all the steak.””

Roy –  4

“Ooh look, every time she has doubled her score from me! This is definitely better than her previous attempts. I literally decided to do research why none of her entries work for me. Queue the phenomenon of ‘Cursive Singing’. In short it means that you have to do a lot of work to be able to understand what the singer is actually singing because of how they lengthen the vowels in words. This causes the insincerity that I feel with entries like this, but for example also with Elsie Bay’s fan-favourite song in Norway. At least we learned something because of Anna, so thanks for that! <3″

Sean – 6

“I’m not sure the imagery in this performance needed to be so violently literal for this country-pop Avicii-inspired track, but Anna sells the hell out of it well and has clearly grown as a performer. Plus, her voice really suits songs like this! It’s nothing too crazy or original but this is a serviceable pop track that doesn’t bore me too much.”

Tyler –  7.5

“”Higher Power” has pretty unique lyrics, in that they feel somewhat deeper than typical fare, specifically a religious theme with the use of the word “eremite”. I do like her outfit (but boo at ditching the hat!) as it fits the twang of the song well. The staging is pretty simple and provides dynamic shots for those at home, but I’m not sure how much this works watching live in the arena. I do like this song, but not nearly as much as “Kingdom Come“, and I think the staging could be improved upon.”

Total: 37/70
Highest: 7.5 (Tyler)
Lowest: 2 (James)
Average: 5.3


GROUP 2

 

Arnaud – 7.5

“A funny funky pop song in Swedish in Melfest? I say yes! It’s fresh, dynamic, and has that retro vibe I appreciate. The song makes you want to dance, maybe not you specifically but I do dance to it in my pyjamas. Great potential, although it doesn’t really stands out. ”

Boris – 9

“Despite the sketchy “wonderbread twink from the hood and his posse of inmates on probation” aesthetic, I’ve grown to absolutely love “Som du vil”. It has the exact right blend of happy-go-lucky naivety, memorable visuals and catchy dance beats that I enjoy in my mello bubblegum bops. The staging on this is exceptional and really sells Theoz as a performer despite my strict anti-Twerp policy. But on top of that, “Som du vil” is also… sapiosexual? Usually these types of Swedish lothario anthems involve the male singer declaring how much he wants to grind his genitalia up against some poor woman’s leg, or rating her f’ckability via a series of obscene hand gestures. By contrast, “Som du vil” is without any references to sex (probably because Theoz is only sixteen, but still) and we know nothing about the appearance of Theoz’s love interest. What we do know (from reading between the lines) is that she’s shy, insecure and fiercely intelligent. The story told here is that of a high schooler simping an introverted girl in his class because he admires her personality, which is a refreshing take I wish more mello love songs had.”

Connor – 10

“This song not going DTF is so infuriating, because this song is SO strong and catchy. Plus, the fact that he’s able to sing that well while executing pop choreo AND connect with the camera? This song has the full melfest package but was killed by the app vote crash. This song is just behind Cassi Opeia in terms of plays on the playlist and it’s one of those songs that just fills you with joy. And while this may be controversial, the song has been giving me possible top 3 vibes now that we have the full final lineup. Don’t let me down Sweden!”

James – 7.5

“I can’t go for the kids today stealing the crap haircuts of the ‘90s. His center part is Jared Padalecki (Dean from Gilmore Girls) level criminal. That being said, Theoz throws the idea of Gen Z’ers being humorless right in the toilet. “Som du vill” is a fun, retro-ish pop funk number about a young lad who wants to get laid. I won’t expand on that theme because this lad looks like he’s just out of Junior Eurovision.”

Roy –  6

“For a debut, it certainly doesn’t feel and look like he hasn’t done Melfest before. Theoz really performs this song very well! The big issue is that we literally have this type of song every year in Melfest that it doesn’t feel unique anymore. I feel like he is capable of more and would love to see him return again!”

Sean – 7

“I like the verses in “Som du vill” but the chorus feels like a bit of a let-down. Overall this 80s-inspired package is nothing extraordinary but could do well with a revamp (sadly Sweden’s lastminute.com approach affords them no time for this). The staging is inventive and Theoz is a decent performer, but I think he has time to grow and should probably come back in a few years with a real chance at taking the Melfest title. Bonus point for Swedish.”

Tyler –  6

“”Som du vill” is pretty good! It’s a serviceable song, and the staging is actually pretty good for it and inventive. I think had the app worked that perhaps Theoz would have went direct to final though, as he seems like a natural performer at his age. What I don’t like is the last part where Theoz is standing by himself on the smaller stage and then there’s just graphics on the floor and it feels discordant from the staging from before it. If this wasn’t in Andra chansen, then I would have said this would be a contender this year, but maybe we’re in for a surprise? Overall, I do like the performance, the song is okay, the staging needs work though.”

Total: 53/70
Highest: 10 (Connor)
Lowest: 6 (Roy, James)
Average: 7.6


 

Arnaud – 4.5

“It’s a cute ballad, kind of reminds me of Clara Klingenström’s song from last year’s Melfest which had a similar vibe to me. But this one is way less powerful, it’s quite bland, which is a shame since I think Lisa has beautiful voice. ”

Boris – 7.5

“This is one of Aunt Lisa’s worst songs and it’s still very charming. STAN TALENT!! I do think it’s lowkey bull she got the shaft for the sakes of Faith Kakembo (I suppose I get to complain about her uncharismatic ass next week? Joy.), but I mostly blame the insipid staging for that. Staging Lisa as a street musician is too immersion-breaking and on the nose to truly work here. Sacha just ran out of ideas here would be my guess, having burnt her creative juju on Cornelia and Theoz in week 1. Lisa’s song itself  is lovely though. She’s is letting us know that she’s not quite done making music yet without many pretences and with tonnes of charisma. Again, I think it’s a shame she wound up stuck in the semifinal but honestly knowing Sweden it’s a small miracle she survived the Sabotage Baptiste in the first place <3″

Connor – 5

“Unfortunately for Lisa, this song is very much outside of my personal music taste, and when it was winning the voting I was actually extremely shocked. I think this song would be magnificent on a movie soundtrack, but on the melfest stage I just got a little bored. I will acknowledge thought that while it’s not for me, I do really like the tone of her voice.”

James – 8 

“The staging idea of Lisa being a busker on a subway platform is great. It adds dynamism, and you find yourself trying to pick out the stories presented by each performer that strolls or dances or skates on. It’s also an appropriate staging for this soft rock track where Lisa is moving on from a past relationship, certain the pain of the past is gone and that she will be on to better things. It’s light, breezy, and lets you know that whatever malaise is affecting you in your personal life, you can get on with it. Lisa is mature and confident, seemingly in a good place, and it shows in her work and makes you aim to join her there.”

Roy –  3

“This song stays too middling and meh for far too long… It doesn’t excite me at all. The chorus has some catchiness to it and I can see why people could love this song. I personally just don’t find enjoyment in this song, but it is great that she brings us some diversity in the lineup.”

Sean – 4

“I mean, HEY! Some of the camera angles are great! But these vocals are very warbly and there is incredibly little substance to this song. The overall vibe is quite nice but I’m judging national final songs competitively this year and this offers me nothing above and beyond some of the other tracks. The key change is painfully, painfully obvious too. Not for me, I’m afraid.”

Tyler –  6.5

“Ignoring the Sheryl Crow vibes from Lisa, “Best to Come” is another cute and serviceable song! It’s pretty okay, but most of my accolades for this comes from the performance. While Lisa mostly stands in one place strumming an electric guitar, the setup is being in a subway station and I love it? The random backup person skateboarding across the stage ♥ The random dancers ♥ I really like this concept, and if more of the backup performers moved around (mostly from the band and their instruments), I think this could make it out of Andra chansen. I don’t mind this song though, it’s nice, but the staging is nicer!”

Total: 36/70
Highest: 8 (James)
Lowest: 3 (Roy)
Average: 5.1


 

Arnaud – 4

“It’s not their best song to me this year. Rock music isn’t my jam, but I can appreciate a good one, and to me Till Our Days Are Over isn’t really an impactful song, it’s quite going nowhere. ”

Boris – 2

“My main gripe with Lillasyster is that GODAWFUL main vocal. Admittedly, this *IS* a personal thing, but if I hate listening to a voice what must I do? Ignore it? lol. Sure, grunge vocals can work but they do not when used in an upbeat schlager-rock song, jesus christ please lubricate that rusty chainsaw of a vocal before ever ‘gracing’ the live stage with anything but the darkest metal ever again.”

Connor – 7

“I feel as if Lillasyster brought another good song to Melodifestivalen this year, and this one in particular has been growing on me slowly. It brings me back to my punk-rock days in high school where I would kick back to Paramore, Green Day, and more. The only part of the song I’m a little iffy on is the first pre-chorus line where we’s almost grumbling – it just doesn’t fit the song melody. But live this song is a massive explosion and a brings all the energy we want at Melfest.”

James – 3

“Sweden are pioneers of rock and metal. But instead of the melodic death metal sound invented by Swedes like At the Gates, Dark Tranquillity and In Flames, at Melodifestivalen we get a second helping of butt rock from Lillasyster. Who is this for? Dodgy uncles who put Truck Nutz on their Volvos? Teens who shout, “Mom! I want donkey sauce on my lutefisk!”? Lyrically, it’s a bunch of self-help quotes on a poster with a soaring eagle that you find framed at the gym. This is just not very inspiring, though. The sound is dated, the Scandipop mercenaries they got to help with the writing don’t add much, and it just has a “life has passed you by” feel instead of feeling pumped up.”

Roy – 7.5 

“A solid Melfest rock-song. Sure, I like my rock heavier and more in your face, but this song is perfectly suited for this competition. If they qualified last time, then this song should most definitely be able to achieve that too! They definitely improved a lot from last year!”

Sean – 5

“When did Lillasyster turn into Swedish proto-U2? Their track last year was a genuinely great contender for Melfest but this is like watering down stadium rock to its bare bones. Given the presence of guitars, it charts higher for me than some other Melfest songs this year, but not by much. Make this heavier please, guys!”

Tyler –  4

“Having Sweden send a rock act would be fantastic, but I just wish it was something else from this selection oops! “Till Our Days Are Over” is kinda catchy, I’ll give it that, but I don’t care for the vocals at all. Are they bad? No, and I think given the high energy they sound about as good as they could be. But I don’t like the sound of it, and as there are various musicians I don’t care for their vocals at are, this is one of them. And that’s okay! The performance itself is just fine, nothing too special in my mind either. I guess for the sake of seeing something different from Sweden I could maybe get behind this entry, but at this time, no thank you.”

Total: 35/70
Highest: 7.5 (Roy)
Lowest: 2 (Boris)
Average: 5.0 (Median: 5/10)


 

Arnaud – 8.5

“I really like this song! The instrumental, the voice, how it’s built… I love it all! It stands out in the selection to me, yet it lacks a wow moment to do well in Eurovision in my opinion.”

Boris – 8

“Everyone who made it to the Semifinals has their own hurdles to overcome. Tone’s is a lack of experience. Lillasyster’s is having a voice like an industrial wood chipper. Cazzi Opeia’s is her dressing up like one of those accursed Starbucks unicorn lattes. I think this may be the biggest eyesore of an outfit in 2022’s entire NF season? Sacha must despise her as much as her stylist does. The f’cking “Je Me Casse” hand puppetry <333 The excessive rainbow aesthetic <333 The SONG however, is very good, with Moa galavanting around the stage like Earth’s most hopelessly lovestruck simp, supported by a fun combo of dramatic strings and aethereal synths that directly inject serotonin into the brain via the headphone IV. Cazzi Opeia is high on life and I savour it. As naive as this dream is, I wish she could win this Melfest, in part because I love her song and want to see this sort of scandipop in Eurovision someday, but also because the idea of sending someone to Turin whose stage name translates as “grasshopper penises” in Italian bemuses the hell out of me <3″

Connor – 8

“First of all, every time I bring up this song in conversation I have to use the Katya quote of “CASSIOPEIA!” and it gets me every time. Out of all the songs in the semi-final, this one has the most plays on my playlist because it’s catchy, digestible, and current. If you needed more confirmation that Cassi Opeia is an amazing songwriter look no further than this song right here. Plus, we’ll see her as a songwriter in ASC too!”

James – 7

“A super-messy yet strangely restrained Scandi club banger. I suspect in the writing stage there were some ideas thrown out by committee, as there are a lot of ideas in both composition and staging that promise wild abandon but fizzle out and rely on that vocal hook to bail them out again and again. I am wondering what Javiera Mena’s “Culpa” would have sounded like as a Melodifestivalen entry instead of a Benidorm entry, and I figure it’d be close to this. Additionally, I don’t know if Cazzi’s outfit is going for manic pixie girl quirky, but it only works in the color scheme. If they push the club banger aspect and ditch the introverted quirk energy and replace it will full blown eccentricity, audiences won’t get enough of it.”

Roy – 8.5

““And I can’t get enough of this song either. The beat is wonderful, Cazzi sounds amazing and mesmerizing. The staging could perhaps be a bit better, but I am absolutely addicted to this song. I know, it doesn’t sound like a ‘Roy-song’, but I have been having this song on repeat and I am not ashamed to admit it! Wouldn’t mind this win the entire competition at all!””

Sean – 7

“I really wasn’t sure what to expect from Cazzi Opeia, given the varied back catalogue. Perhaps this is a little too pop, but this is a great slice of Röyksopp-era Scandipop that works quite well in the Melfest context. It’s definitely a lot more authentic than a lot of Melfest entries, so I have to give it kudos for that, and it was certainly an enjoyable listen overall.”

Tyler –  7

“Nothing too crazy, nothing too bland, “I Can’t Get Enough” is enough for me :-).  I do like this song, as it blends pop with “Tears Getting Sober” (relisten to the beginning if you don’t believe me!), it’s simple and I like the aesthetics of the staging. And also Cazzi Opeia is a great stage name, it’s out of this world. I do think something more can come from the staging, but it also feels earnest at the same time and I don’t want it to change too much? Hmm. I don’t know if this will escape Andra chansen, but I am curious to see what else is in store for Cazzi.”

Total: 54/70
Highest: 8.5 (Arnaud, Roy)
Lowest: 7 (James, Sean, Tyler)
Average: 7.7


The Verdict

Putting all of these together has produced the following ranking:

  1. Cazzi Opeia“I can’t get enough” (77%)
  2. Theoz “Som du vill” (76%)
  3. Tone Sekelius“My way” (64%)
  4. Anna Bergendahl “Higher power” (53%)
  5. Lisa Miskovsky“Best to come” (51%)
  6. Alvaro Estrella“Suave” (50%) (median: 5.5)
  7. Lillasyster“Till our days are over” (50%) (median: 5)
  8. Danne Stråhed“Hallabaloo” (48%)

If Team ESCunited had its way, then we would see Tone and Anna as the qualifiers from the first group, while Theoz and Cazzi Opeia would qualify from the second group. Cazzi Opeia emerges as our overall favourite over Theoz, both scoring an average well above 7.5 (with Cazzi’s being more consistent).

Whether Sweden will follow our lead, remains to be seen. Tune in for tonight’s semfinal to see which four of these eight hopefull will reach that hotly contested Grand Final!

Do #YOU agree with our results? Which four acts do #YOU want to see in the finale of Melodifestivalen?  Let us know in the comments, on social media or on our forum HERE. Alternatively, join the discussion on our Discord HERE

 

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One Comment

  1. Melfest Finale Reviews – escYOUnited

    March 12, 2022 at 15:10

    […] Reviews on the four acts that qualified through the Semifinals can be found HERE: […]

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