Music isn’t fireworks, we’re told. And Ethno-Jazz Band Iriao seem to agree. They let their music speak for itself during their first rehearsal, standing amid red lights and simply singing their song. That song includes some of the best harmonies of the year, which are delivered by confident performers unfazed by the mammoth arena around them.
The song has one of the best instrumentals of the year and embodies traditional Georgian music. It’s delicate and light, but builds to an eventful final minute where their resonant voices create a powerful wall of sound. It’s somehow inspired and inspiring, and proves you don’t have to give it away all at once to keep viewers’ interest. This is a slow build that’s definitely worth the wait. At the conclusion of the song a pyro shower rains down, adding a bit of spark to the pared-back performance.
Fans of the song — and its simple staging — will be even bigger fans after these rehearsals. Those who weren’t so keen previously — and considered it better suited to a Georgian street festival — will think they look like waiters performing alongside the dinner buffet on a seniors cruise. But in this wide-open semi-final, the latter could well push Georgia through to the final.
Ethno-Jazz Band Iriao — “For You”: Reviews and Reactions
Georgia: First rehearsal at Eurovision 2018
Georgia: First press conference 2018
Photo: Eurovision.tv (EBU)