The final of Eesti Laul 2018 takes place this Saturday, where Estonia will select its act for the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 and discover who will take to the stage in Lisbon in May.
And if our Wiwi Jury has anything to say about it, Eurovision 2015 contestant Stig Rästa will be the act Estonia sends to Portugal.
His acoustic guitar track “Home” racked up a respectable average of 7.5/10, which in our jury’s eyes puts him in pole position going into the final on Saturday night, where he’ll perform fifth.
That score doesn’t give him a huge margin over the competition, however. Elina Nechayeva – Stig’s nearest rival after Desiree’s elimination in the heats – averaged 7.12/10, putting her in striking distance of the win too.
Nika took third spot in the jury with 6.92/10, suggesting “Knock Knock” will be the dark horse of the final.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, glamrock group Evestus were only able to average 4/10.
1. Stig Rästa – “Home”
The best: “Stig Rästa is an underrated genius — “Goodbye to Yesterday” should have won Eurovision 2015 and “Play” deserved a lot more the following year. He never disappoints and with “Home” he has crafted the feel-good track of 2018. It plays things a little safe and you would imagine some very simple staging unlike his dramatic duet with Elina Born. It doesn’t scream Eurovision winner this time but this will make you smile. It’s going straight onto my future wedding playlist.” (Antranig: 9/10)
The worst: “Stig has ditched the drama and gone for something calmer. But while “Home” is breezy, mellow and lyrically smart, it’s also a little bit boring and feels like Eurovision by numbers. Simplistic guitar backed songs have been done before, and done very successfully, but this isn’t bringing anything new to the table. Smart lyrics can’t compensate for lack of impact and it feels as though after multiple appearances in recent years, Stig has lost his lustre. (Angus: 6/10)
2. Elina Nechayeva – “La Forza”
The best: “La Forza” is beyond epic. This is otherworldly elite popera that should blow the competition out of the water. This must be the winner of Eesti Laul 2018 because nothing comes close in terms of quality. It doesn’t stand out as a traditional Eurovision entry but neither did the last two Eurovision winners. I could see Elina winning Eurovision and taking us back to Tallinn and it would be well deserved.” (Antranig: 10/10)
The worst: “The song will appeal to people who like vocal theatrics. If big “Sound of Silence” money notes are out of fashion in pop, a song like “La Forza” is there to pick up the pieces for people who like ladies with lungs. Full respect to that audience, but this just sounds like a bunch of vocal tricks to show off the singer’s range.” (Robyn: 4.5/10)
3. Nika – “Knock Knock”
The best: “A very interesting package of dark pop, which keeps changing as the track goes on! The dubstep theme is followed by a piano-driven one, then they’re both mixed. It’s just so well-composed that it could be a dark horse!” (Barnabas: 8/10)
The worst: “After listening to this it feels like you‘ve listened to five different songs! Although every song-part on its own sounds great, the combination of them is just too much! Nika overdid it by having too many ideas for only one song. So although it‘s interesting and fresh, this confuses me.” (Rick: 5.5/10)
FULL WIWI JURY EESTI LAUL 2018 FINAL RANKING:
- Stig Rästa – “Home” (7.5)
- Elina Netsajeva – “La Forza” (7.12)
- Nika – “Knock Knock” (6.92)
- Iiris & Agoh – “Drop That Boogie” (6.85)
- Vajé – “Laura (Walk With Me)” (6.46)
- Sibyl Vane – “Thousand Words” (5.81)
- Karl Kristjan & Karl Killing (ft. Wateva) – “Young” (5.81)
- Frankie Animal – “(Can’t Keep Calling) Misty” (5.65)
- Ellis Parna & Gerli Padar – “Sky” (4.81)
- Evestus – “Welcome to my World” (4)