The Tolmachevy Sisters—the fembots who will sing for Russia at Eurovision 2014—have released the official video for their song “Shine”. It wasn’t worth the wait.
Producers clearly thought that we would still be impressed that there are two of them. Rather than making an effort to tell a story visually, they’ve locked the twins in a room, put them in identical clothing, and asked them to stand in place while everything goes really pink. We’re fans of pink, but this is too much. It’s like a cotton candy factory exploded.
There is an upside to this downside. Because there was nothing to look at we focused on the “Shine” lyrics. Now we see “Shine” for what it is: a veiled love letter from Russia to Crimea.
Rewind to early February 2014, before Russian special forces occupied the Ukrainian territory. The Tolmachevy Twins were probably re-mastering the song, and potentially contemplating the lyrics.
“Been looking at the sky/ wishing on a star/ waiting for a brand new start.”
What’s under that sky? The Autonomous Republic of Crimea, which was transfered from Soviet Russia to Soviet Ukraine as a symbolic gesture in 1954 to commemorate the 300th annivesrary of Ukraine becoming a part of the Russian Empire.
“Living on the edge/ closer to the crime/ cross the line a step at a time.”
Apparently their brand new start involves inching towards the Ukrainian border. Like one of Putin’s tanks, these Sisters want to bring Crimea back into the fold. The “crime” they sing about could refer to Crimea itself, or to the illegal annexation of Ukrainian territory.
“Now something’s got to give/ make a brighter day/ all we got to say.”
They aren’t willing to negotiate. They just want to launch into the chorus. It’s similar to how Putin didn’t actually want to engage in diplomacy. He just wanted to stage his illegal referendum and annex that land.
The chorus suggests nothing can stop Mother Russia from taking back what she sees as hers.
“Sending out a message up above/ Telling all the world to show some love/ No one’s gone bring me down, bring me down/ You are my rising sun.”
According to FreeMapTools.com, the distance by land transport between Moscow and Simferopol, the Crimean capital, is around 900 miles, or slightly less than 1,000. That makes the next verse somewhat telling.
“My life is on a string/ when I see you smile/ our love will last a thousand miles.”
Okay, now it’s just getting blatant.
“Now maybe there’s a place/ maybe there’s a time/ maybe there’s a day you’ll be mine.”
What do you guys think? Are the Tolmachevy Sisters vessels for Putin to convey his thoughts on Crimea? Do you think that this is Moscow’s weakest entry in years? And what on earth is that music video all about?
Willy Lee Adams contributed this report from London. Follow him on Twitter @willyleeadams. You can also keep up with the latest Eurovision news and gossip by following wiwibloggs.com on Twitter and Facebook.