We are getting close to Belarus’ national selection for Eurovision 2017, which takes place on January 20. So in recent weeks the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of musical unprofessionals — has been listening to and reviewing all the songs. It’s a tough gig, but somebody’s got to do it! Vladislav Kurasov will be joining the party with “Follow the Play”. Are we playing along? Read and find out!

Vladislav Kurasov — “Follow the Play”

https://youtu.be/-sQaGz03Lpc

“Follow the Play”reviews

Antranig: Vlad has an impeccable look and an enchanting voice. “Follow the Play” takes about two minutes to get going but the last minute or so is very powerful. I don’t think it’s the right type of song for him — something much more upbeat would be more suitable. Nevertheless, this is one of the best songs in the selection and Vlad has a beautiful voice and look which could carry him to the final. Full of boundless potential.

Score: 9/10

Chris: Take it down an octave and maybe this would work better. Vladislav just sounds like he’s struggling through the song the entire time and it just becomes an uncomfortable listen. His stage presence doesn’t sell the song for me. There’s periods where it’s just instrumental and he stands there like he’s desperate to get off the stage.

Score: 2.5/10

Kristin:  I’m getting some Sam Smith vibes here. This song has potential, but it’s a tad over the top for my taste. Too much “FEEL MY FEELINGS”, if you know what I mean. But Vlad… oh, that sweet angelic face. As a mother, I am tempted to adopt him! And give him tuna sandwiches and spongecake! I’m a little torn about the song though. I want to giggle and dismiss it as a catastrophe, but at the same time, I really want to like it. It’s in the middle for now, but if Vlad tones it down a bit, who knows what might happen.

Score: 5/10

Robyn: This is the legacy of “1944” — a dramatic ballad over modern beats. There are a lot of good ideas behind the song, but Vladislav’s voice isn’t always up to the rigours of the melody. And even when he nails it, the lightweight lyrics don’t deliver. A generic love ballad doesn’t quite pack the same emotional punch as Jamala’s tale of historic anguish.

Score: 6/10

Mikhail: At first it sounded ordinary for me. Then I began to really love the instrumental bridge, which has some flute, a traditional Japanese influence. It is nice overall, however it seems that Vladislav lacks a little bit of power. He sings on the border between falsetto and regular voice. It is not quite there yet, and needs to be improved. “Follow the Play” is otherwise a decent entry, but I don’t think it is the winner.

Score: 6/10

Luis: There’s too much “ooooh” in this song. Vlad sounds like the Belarussian answer to Dima Bilan, something I’m not completely sure is a good thing. “Follow the Play” is dramatic but disposable at the same time. It has too many ups and downs, and rather than making it memorable, it prevents me from remembering it. This song’s fate will completely depend on its staging to win Belarus’ national selection. But as Ivan proved, nice staging doesn’t always make a qualifier.

Score: 2.5/10

William: Inflated, maudlin, shriek-y — this is a ballad that Belarus needs to avoid, but which local voters will wet themselves over. It’s regional, it isn’t pan-European, and if you choose this you’ll be lucky to scrape into the final. While I respect Vladislav’s voice and his looks, I just can’t get into this song. It leaves me cold and feeling meh.

Score: 6.5/10

Sami: I actually find this surprisingly pleasant to listen to. While I’m not really excited over his slightly whiny vocals, I really like the instrumental parts. Especially the one towards the end of the song and the last minute is actually the best part of the song. I can’t see this doing particularly well in Eurovision, as it really doesn’t leave anything in your mind after the first listen.

Score: 6/10

In the Belarus Wiwi Jury, we have 17 jurors but only room for 8 reviews. The rest of our scores can be found below:

Bernardo: 5/10

Dayana: 7/10

Edd: 1.5/10

Jason: 4.5/10

Patrick: 7/10

Rezo: 3/10

Sinan: 4.5/10

Steinunn: 6.5/10

Zakaria: 3/10

 

 

 

 

 

 

Before calculating the average score, the highest and lowest scores are dropped. This is to remove outliers and reduce potential bias. We have removed a low of 1.5 and a high of 9.

WIWI JURY VERDICT: 5/10

SEE OUR LIST OF BELARUS 2017 RANKINGS HERE

FOLLOW ALL OF OUR BELARUS EUROVISION NEWS HERE

31 Comments
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Ruta
Ruta
4 years ago

Kurasov is the best! Not exactly agree with judges scores- I think they are too low.

Lelde
Lelde
4 years ago

Love it!!!! Would be an amazing choice for Belarus!!!

Kat
Kat
4 years ago

This is a potencial winner of the competition thats why these bloggers want to make his rate lower trying to avoid so strong cincurent for their countries (

Spring
Spring
4 years ago

It’s the best for me in all selection. Vladislav has a very beautiful voice!

Purple Mask
Purple Mask
4 years ago

I’m just trying to imagine what Pollaski’s “real” melodrama would look like, if such a song and performance were given to Vlad. :S
(It’s always going to be acted emotion, isn’t it?)
Fair opinion though.

Eurofan
Eurofan
4 years ago

I also think it’s the best one in the selection. I admire his voice. I hope Belarus will choose him.

Pollaski
Pollaski
4 years ago

There isn’t emotion here. It’s melodrama. Forced melodrama, and not at all done well. If the goal of the song was to make the singer sound as pathetic and wretched as possible, they succeeded. Please don’t choose this one, Belarus.

AngieP
AngieP
4 years ago

Interesting song. Love the sound and the bridge, his vocals seem great! I think this can stand at ESC.

Nickc
Nickc
4 years ago

All of you thinking navi will win, they could have won last year with their better song, but they were ranked lower than napoli. Do I need to say more? Isn’t vlad Ukrainian? In addition to having the best song, he also has “let’s honor our Ukrainian brothers with a Ukrainian singer” card going for him

Johan
Johan
4 years ago

Gallagher You are right about high notes

#JustHitPlay
#JustHitPlay
4 years ago

I’m tired of boring europop. This man has emotion and story in his song. His voice is emotional and powerful. We need more dramaticsongs like this one.

mawnck
mawnck
4 years ago

The song ain’t bad, but his live falsetto sounds like he’s gargling. That performance would never make the Eurovision final in a million years.

cheesecake
cheesecake
4 years ago

This is actually good (in the studio version especially), I’m surprised. I don’t like his high notes though.

eurana
eurana
4 years ago

The better Belarussian entry since cheesecake. Send it to Kiev.

Unofficial Månsters Association
Unofficial Månsters Association
4 years ago

Instead of mentioning their names, I meant to say their songs, like “Heartbeat” and “We’ll Be Together”.

Unofficial Månsters Association
Unofficial Månsters Association
4 years ago

The only things I like about this song is that Vladislav puts in a lot of emotion into the song and that the song itself gives a very mysterious feeling. I’m not over-the-top with everything else. Especially during his performance, it seemed to me he was anxious and trying to hurry and finish the song, like Chris mentioned, and some of the hand movements he was making were kind of weird also. I can predict that the staging could be great, so that may be one of the positive things that his performance may contain soon. Overall from my perspective,… Read more »

Vladimir Putin a.k.a. the ULTIMATE thug of the Universe
Vladimir Putin a.k.a. the ULTIMATE thug of the Universe
4 years ago

@Johan +1

Zebb
Zebb
4 years ago

I find it’s interesting, specifically in instrumental part. But his vocals simply not suitable for everyone even though he sings good.

Somebody123
Somebody123
4 years ago

One of my favorites in the belarussian national selection. I love it.

Vanessa
Vanessa
4 years ago

I really want Vlad to win but I fear he’s going to lose 🙁

Johan
Johan
4 years ago

Gallagher – The microphone, from which recording was carried out on the video of an audition, was installed in the studio more than 10 meters away from the singer and it’s not HQ concert microphone, but ordinary for the webcast. In the studio everything sounded different. So live vocal of many Belarusian performers seems weak on the video. In fact it is not.

(J)ESC Fanatic
(J)ESC Fanatic
4 years ago

“Only thing he needs to follow is the way to my bedroom”

I laughed really hard! 😀

zlatan
zlatan
4 years ago

My absolute winner, please don’t waste this song for a non-qualifier.Though, Vlad has to improve his pronunciation when he says ‘Play’ it sounds like ‘Ply’. Or he can sing it in Belarussian language which would be better!

Polegend Godgarina
Polegend Godgarina
4 years ago

@ Nickc – the future winners NAVI have a all-Belarusian composed song written in the Belarusian language, so I don’t get your argument. A great voice doesn’t make a song good.

Polegend Godgarina
Polegend Godgarina
4 years ago

Only thing he needs to follow is the way to my bedroom. Other than that, it’s just another weak song.

beccaboo1212
4 years ago

…and what a voice! I was shocked the first time I heard it!! Vlad would have the audience on its feet with wild applause by the time “Follow the Play” ends! 😀

9.5/10

Purple Mask
Purple Mask
4 years ago

I have actually had dreams about Vlad… who for some reason gets to rule the world. 😀
The song “follow the play” is musically top-draw. Again there are slight issues with the English lyrics, but they can be easily fixed. Vlad’s performance of this song is wonderfully dramatic and haunting. I would like to see a bit more of a sexier edge to his performance, but haunting will do as well – he adds something different to the mix.

esconly
esconly
4 years ago

no no no….3/10

Tomas Patrick Davitt
Tomas Patrick Davitt
4 years ago

I love this song as well so Im slightly surprised by the low scores. The studio version does sound much better than the live performance but also the way they made them sing standing on their own with a number pinned to them in the preselection didnt exactly lend itself to a sexy performance. I think Vlad will be able to put on a decent performance for this, which as Luis said will be vital. The gorgeous instrumental bridge before the finale should be in the song way more – as the lead in right at the start and also… Read more »

(J)ESC Fanatic
(J)ESC Fanatic
4 years ago

Is it me or has William started being more generous with the scores? 😀

I have to say I’m surprised that most of you were left cold, because I consider this a contender. I think it’s a very good and unique song. Second place in my top. Still though, not even close to my winner, which is a masterpiece.

7.5/10

Nickc
Nickc
4 years ago

Sorry guys, this is the best song in the selection, and it will win comfortably. It has emotion, drama, depth. Not everything should be a Nordic produced dance beat.