Germany decided to go back to a national final format this year after last year’s disappointing result. Six songs were put forward to participate in the selection and the nation will decide which one of those six will represent their country tonight. It was about time that Team United took a gander at these songs and share their thoughts about all of them. Let’s check in about what their findings were.
Our today’s 3-headed panel :
- James Maude, our Californian based correspondent
- Roy Postema, Germany’s neighbour from the Netherlands
- Tyler Griffith, the marathon-reviewer from Alaska
As always, the opinions stated in this article belong to the person quoted and do not represent ESCUnited as a whole or the views of the other reviewers.
Now let’s start with the reviews!
Malik Harris – Rockstars
James – 3 – “Rhyming hard with fast? If only that’s where the sins of this abominably boring “wish we” hip hop track stopped. I am not a big fan of young people doing “reminiscence” tracks as they usually come off as shallow unless they explicitly define something in their lives that changed (e.g. an event that forces a pre and post comparison). This one does not. Malik does attempt to connect with a larger audience with “I’m pretty sure we all feel”, but like his lyrics the attempt comes off as clunky. Adulting is hard, kid. The temptation to want to regress to a childhood state just makes it worse.”
Roy – 7.5 – “If Germany really want a radio friendly song to go to Eurovision, then this should be the pick for them. Could see this being played on a lot of stations. Doesn’t mean the song is perfect though. In quite a few spots in the song, the song feels quite empty instrumentally and it could easily be picked apart in those bits. The part before ‘press pause’ sold the song in the ending for me though.”
Tyler – 3.5 – “‘Rockstars’ is very much an example of, ‘I don’t like this song because I don’t like the sound of his vocals’ and while that’s unfair, I don’t care! 🙂 The song definitely sticks out in this selection, but that’s pretty much all it has going for it. Maybe that means it has a chance, but also, I don’t want to listen to this early 10s knockoff song so bye!”
Total score: 14 (avg. 4.7)
Maël & Jonas – I Swear To God
James – 7 – “Is this pop rock song about a kid growing up and realizing his dodgy Dad or Uncle may not be a reliable figure and he has to figure out things on his own? If so, that’d be a novel subject for Eurovision. Perhaps for staging they could show a Dad taking his kid to watch a bare-knuckle boxing match at an abandoned mill or tied to a post while his Uncle visits the brothel above the fish and chip shop in Brighouse? Or Ludenscheid, which is Brighouse’s twin town in Germany. Anyway, this has a ‘90s indie vibe to it and despite dark subject matter, it’s light and breezy and has a great vocal hook.”
Roy – 7.5 – “The second option that Germany have in my eyes. It’s a fun pop-rock tune that flows nicely. I wish it went a bit less safe in the chorus, but I definitely like its chances at Eurovision if this were to win. I hope the guys can perform this song well live, that will be the make or break moment.”
Tyler – 5 – “‘I Swear to God’ doesn’t do nearly enough for me to really get behind it, as it feels like it should at least be in a pop-punk vibe to it and doesn’t go far enough with it. There isn’t enough oomph in this song to make me like it more, and it feels middling at best, forgettable at worst.”
Total score: 19.5 (Avg. 6.5)
Eros Atomus – Alive
James – 4 – “And the award for dopiest lyric at a national selection goes to “I love being alive.” I guess “it sucks being dead” won’t cut it when you have the opportunity to rhyme alive with alive over and over and over again. I am not sure what this folk pop Gen Zer is getting at with this, but this is nowhere near as life affirming as he thinks it is. In the era of low expectations for airline customer service, this might make a great ad campaign for someone like Spirit Airlines. “I love being alive” works better as a motto than “we got you to your destination, you goddamn ingrate!” I’d write off this entire track as a gormless waste of time, but the part at the bridge slays. This kid has potential, but he needs work and sending him to Eurovision right now would be “Do it for your lover” style doom.”
Roy – 3 – “His voice is definitely interesting, but this song isn’t really that imaginative. It’s the type of song that you have at the start of some mediocre show on TV. It does absolutely nothing with me, but I guess it could be performed and staged quite well. Not that Germany has had that good of a track record with that though..”
Tyler – 4 – “‘Alive’ is a song! That exists! It sits in a nebulous space where I don’t care for the sound of the vocals, but I also don’t care for the sound of the instrumentation itself, as it feels quite generic and nothing really revolutionary. This feels like a successor to ‘Perfect Life’ or whatever the 2017 entry for Germany was, and I guess I’m curious how that’ll turn out this time! No thank you.”
Total score: 11 (avg. 3.7)
Emily Roberts – Soap
James – 5 – “A Eurovision national selection video with In-n-Out in it! California’s In-n-Out is the best burger and fries in the United States, and I know at ESC United we have some writers who won’t evangelize for it because their loyalty lies with toilet burger brands like WhataBurger. In Texas, if you fill the back of your pickup with suds and park at a WhataBurger, you’d probably get arrested. Not in California! Especially out towards Palm Springs where those dinosaur statues are. On the negative side, this video was also filmed on Santa Monica Pier, and I bet Emily can smell the hobo urine and algae. Oh yeah! What about the song itself? Dopey mid-oughts pop and something about washing brains with soap. The song’s forgettable, but the video inspired me to get a Double Double with Animal Style fries.”
Roy – 2.5 – “Could have been a decent song until the pre-chorus and the chorus kick in. These lyrics are a bit stupid… I mean, how can you wash a brain with soap? Like explicitly soap? Really? Ugh… The bubbles at the start of the chorus are a bit silly. The song just doesn’t work in the way it is trying to work. The transition from ‘What the Heck’ to the chorus is also very awkward. Just doesn’t work in the end…”
Tyler – 7 – “I like the idea behind ‘Soap’, and while I don’t think using the word ‘soap’ works well musically, it’s still interesting enough for me to pay attention and be interested in it. The instrumentation feels a little formulaic (minus the suds sound effects), but this could be fun to see performed live? Wouldn’t be mad if this won for Germany, but also, it’s slim pickings here. 😕”
Total score: 14.5 (Avg. 4.8)
Felicia Lu – Anxiety
James – 7.5 – “Songs about anxiety give me anxiety. I am not sure this is the catharsis we need for coming out of a pandemic, especially right now as we have war in Eastern Europe. I am sure it will work for some people. You do you, as Felicia and the millennials say. Still, this song has its merits. I do enjoy her vocal riffing in the chorus. That idea has some cathartic qualities, especially if you’re a fan and you sing along and can nail it. I tried. I just ended up scaring my cats. I also like the guitar in the chorus, too, but wish it could be tied better to the verses. This song is imperfect, but that’s largely the point and I applaud Felicia for getting herself out there and encouraging others to do so.”
Roy – 6 – “Why make the chorus so wordy?? We saw with Roxen last year how that worked absolutely terribly live.. I have the gut feeling that the same will happen here. The build-up to the chorus is quite nice and the chorus starts quite nicely too. In the end it just leaves me worried and the song makes me feel a tad anxious myself even.”
Tyler – 7.5 – “For a mental health awareness song, I quite like how “Anxiety” sounds! It feels a little outdated at points, but I like how harsh the music it as well. Makes me feel slightly anxious, so good job with creating that atmosphere. I’m not sure how the staging for this would look, but I’m curious about it either way. Definitely my choice for Germany.”
Total score: 20 (avg. 6.7)
Nico Suave & Team Liebe – Hallo Welt
Disclaimer: These reviews were written without the knowledge of the new proposed lyrics. We decided it wasn’t worth it judging the new lyrics since they were only released separately and not as a new version of the song.
James – 1 – “Oh hell no, another German song referencing social media and negativity. Because that worked so well for Germany at Eurovision 2021! Is “at least we did better than the British” the bar the Germans set these days? But this monstrosity also comes with subpar rap, a Christian type morality tale about two social media profiles and a gospel outro as well. At least Jedrick attempted some wackiness and some puppy dog earnestness, but this humorless crew with a patronizing attitude is unintentionally adding to the negativity in the world.”
Roy – 2 – “This song lost me at the ‘Ahhh’ in the beginning. This song is just way too sugary and cringey. The pop-culture references are insanely cringey and the verses just don’t work for me. The way you roll into the chorus is nice, but the rest is just one big cringefest. This will probably just flop at Eurovision and it will mean that Germany has to go back to the drawing once again!”
Tyler – 2.5 – “‘Hallo Welt’ is…not good! 🙂 The song sounds like it’s being workshopped, and then even though this is in German, I don’t care for the translation of the lyrics. The sound feels very outdated and like early-stage Pentatonix. It feels curated and artificial, and I don’t care for this at all so bye”
Total score: 5.5 (avg. 1.8)
After calculating all the points and averages, let’s look at how they stack up against each other:
- Felicia Lu – Anxiety (6.7)
- Maël & Jonas – I Swear To God (6.5)
- Emily Roberts – Soap (4.8)
- Malik Harris – Rockstars (4.7)
- Eros Atomus – Alive (3.7)
- Nico Suave & Team Liebe – Hallo Welt (1.8)
As you can see, our pick for Germany is Felicia Lu with her song Anxiety! Of course there are the variables of the changed lyrics of ‘Hallo Welt’ and the fact that all the songs will have to be performed live. Tune in tonight at 21:00 to find out what Germany will select as their song for Eurovision.
Do #YOU agree with our thoughts? Which act would #YOU pick to improve Germany’s chances? Let us know in the comments, on social media or on our forum HERE. Alternatively, join the discussion on our Discord HERE.