Song Reviews – Moldova and Netherlands
Posted by Caroline on April 12, 2007
Artist: Natalia Barbu
Moldova were the first country to actually choose their song for this year’s Eurovision, having the whole process neatly wrapped up before Christmas (normally Albania get in first but this year they were beaten to it). It’s the Moldovans’ third attempt at Eurovision – following their smashing debut in 2005 when Zdob Si Zdub’s drum-beating pensioner propelled them into the top ten, last year they faltered badly, scoring even less points than the UK (and when that happens, you know things must be bad) with a bit of faux reggae so frankly appalling that even Peter Andre would have rejected it on the grounds of taste and decency.
So, what of this year? Well, let’s just say it’s a distinct improvement on last year. At first listen Natalia’s song didn’t really do much for us (apart from make certain members of Team Eurovision shout, “My God! It’s Love Is A Battlefield for the 21st Century!”) but we have to admit this one has grown on us with repeat listenings – it’s a catchy little rock number with a nice shouty chorus and growling guitars, and even if it does sound a tad dated, it does make us want to thrust our fists in the air and yell. Which can only be a good thing.
For It: Not a bad little tune, as it happens.
Against It: We had to listen to it several times to realise this – and given the amount of people that hear the songs for the first time on semi-finals night, this might be a major stumbling block. It’s memorable, certainly – but not that memorable.
Prediction: Again, we’re not sure. We’re not convinced it’s a qualifier, but at the same time it’s one of those songs that could surprise us. We are staying firmly on the fence.
Song: On Top Of The World
Artist: Edsilia Rombley
Remember Edsilia? She represented the Netherlands at the Birmingham contest in 1998 with Hemel En Aarde (this of course being the year before the ‘free language’ rule came in) and did very well indeed, finishing fourth on the night. Now she’s back, and hoping to restore the fortunes of a veteran Eurovision country who, like the UK, seem to have had a run of bad luck recently. So much so, that they haven’t reached the final since 2004.
Being an old hand at this sort of thing, you would of course expect great things from Edsilia – so how does On Top Of The World fare? Well we first heard this song – which we were informed was originally written for Anastasia – in its native language and it kind of passed us by. Translated into English, however, it works much much better – almost transforms the whole song, in fact. It’s one of those annoying ones which starts off as a ballad before turning all shiny and disco-tastic – and while it’s far from the best song in the contest it has a bouncy mainstream pop feel which could actually work in its favour.
For It: It’s in the hands of a Eurovision veteran who gave one of the best performances of the 1998 contest – and there’s no reason to believe she can’t do it again.
Against It: Being a Eurovision veteran is no guarantee of a ticket to the final, as Iceland’s Selma discovered in 2005 and Poland’s Ich Troje last year.
Prediction: Oh gosh, this is far too difficult this year. Another one which could go either way – with a good performance on the night we reckon this one might scrape in. But then again it might not. Confused, us?