The second semi-final of Melodifestivalen 2015 was definitely a weaker affair than what we witnessed last week. And while it may have lacked strong songs, it was still high on the drama. Mariette did battle with a wind machine, while ageing pop star Magnus Carlsson fought through some fierce dance moves. In the end they both triumphed and advanced direkt till final. Linus Svenning and Samir & Viktor will sing again in Andra Chansen.
Melfest 2015: Second semi-final review
#melfest Deltävling 2: direkt till final
“DON’T STOP BELIEVING” – MARIETTE
There was a long pause after Magnus’ performance, presumably because they needed to crank up Mariette’s wind machine. She felt every verse of her song, and it’s clear this woman knows how to bring the drama. Her Dementor-esque dancers added an eerieness to this and it worked really well. Despite the darkness it’s meant to be uplifting. In the lyrics she seems to suggest that breaking up doesn’t mean the end of love: “And no matter what people say, from today we’re strong enough to smile and walk away…I believe in you.”
Read the “Don’t Stop Believing” lyrics here.
“MÖT MIG I GAMLA STAN” – MAGNUS CARLSSON
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Magnus, you can sing whatever you want as long as you sing it with those dance moves! The choreography was on point and Magnus proves, once again, that you can’t slow him down — even if you throw out some tricky steps. I didn’t like the 1970s build-up to the song, and I feel like we’ve heard this song at least 12 times at Melodifestivalens in the past. But the chorus is schlager-tastic and really gets stuck in your head. As ever, he’s singing about love and letting go: “Like a mirror, you were close, there is no one else who has seen me so.” Read the “Möt mig i Gamla Stan” lyrics here.
Linus Svenning — “Forever Starts Today”
A lot of people expected another ethno-ballad in the mold of last year’s“Bröder”, but this evening Linus proved he’s not a one-trick pony. The song smacks of perseverance and moving on, and could be read as a thematic extension of Bröder, which discussed losing a brother: “I close my eyes and count to ten, I realize that I can breath, that I can breath again.” The staging is decidedly urban with drummers baning on oversized drums STOMP style, though at time I thought homeless people were in the background setting things on fire. He struggled to hold his pitch on some of the lower notes, and the ending seems rather abrupt. But all in all a very sophisticated performance. Read the “Forever Starts Today” lyrics here.
“GROUPIE” – SAMIR & VIKTOR
Judging from the Groupie lyrics, this is meant to be a clever play on the two meanings of “groupie”—as in someone obsessed with an artist, and a group photo. The guys look great but they really need to work on their synchronization — it often felt off. This is more sophisticated than the numbers dropped by Sean Banan in years past, and yet this still feels somehow silly. Read the “Groupie” lyrics here.
“IF I WAS GOD FOR ONE DAY” – NEVERSTORE
My opinion of this has risen a lot since the 30-second clip. It was tender and sweet and the ooo-ooo-ooos were seriously catchy. The red lighting with the elevated, transparent platform looked amaze, even if simple. In a recent interview with wiwibloggs, alt-rock band Neverstore told us that their song “is about losing someone and wanting to turn back time and to get another chance.” The lyrics capture the meloncholy inherent in that message: “If I was god for one day, I’d chase the shadows away and lead you back to my heart.” Awww.
“Där och da med dig” — Emelie Irewald
From the very first note — and sight of black — I knew that I was going to need some anti-depressants. Emelie has a lovely voice and she brought the emotion and the drama. I just wish I spoke Swedish so it was more accessible to me without having to read the stalker-esque lyrics: “Wait, I want to go with you, I am afraid, afraid of the dark, Let me take you, have a chance in our last dance.” Psycho-obsessive aside, the stage was filled with hundreds of incandescent lights. Despite my sarcasm, it really was a magical performance.
“NONETHELESS” – MARIE BERGMAN & SANNE SALOMONSEN
I know this much is true: They’ve got the over-60 vote on lock. #mello #melfest #mello2015 A photo posted by wiwibloggs (@wiwibloggs) on
Well, they’ve got the over-60 vote on lock! “A wild coyote in a prison” makes for an interesting lyric, but sadly it’s the only thing I can remember. The performance lacked drive and it sounded like they were being played back in slow motion. It had no energy or life and at times I worried that the ladies don’t have a pulse. Marie and Sanne (not Nielsen) need to fire their stylist too.