Hej Sverige! The grand final of Melodifestivalen 2018 will take place tonight. It’s where Sweden will decide who will represent them in Lisbon and maybe even bring home that sought-after seventh Eurovision victory. Over the past few weeks, the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — has been reviewing the 12 songs that will be performing in the final at Friends Arena. But which is our favourite?
The Wiwi Jury was wooed by Felix Sandman‘s tale of heartbreak, “Every Single Day”. We gave the former FO&O star 7.29/10 for his andra chansen qualifier, making him our 2018 jury favourite.
In second place was Felix’s bestie and another 2017 returning act, Benjamin Ingrosso. His slick and sexy number “Dance You Off” earned an average of 7.25/10, putting him in second place. And third was Melfest party boys, Samir & Viktor. Their infectious number “Shuffla” earned 7.11/10 from the jury.
At the other end was comedy dansband Rolandz with “Fuldans”. The jury wasn’t on board with Roland’s “ugly dance”, awarding the song an average of only 3.36/10.
The best: This song is dripping with melancholy — and it’s the best kind, mourning for a lost love. Felix might not have the strongest voice, but the song suits a bit of fragility so his vocals work well with the song. Most importantly, “Every Single Day” has a rock-solid melody. It can withstand being bashed about a bit — cleverly suggesting an inner strength that will withstand a broken heart. If Felix can up his game, this could be a contender for Lisbon. (Robyn, 9/10)
The worst: Minimalist teenage boy balladry was original two years ago but not anymore, as evidenced by Felix being passed over for one of the two direct qualifier spots last Saturday night. In fact, the lack of inspiration is the biggest problem here. “Every Single Day” is a fine song, and Felix has a fine voice, but the end result is just fine. No wow, no shivers, no cool. And sadly that all ads up to give it no chance of winning the competition. (Angus, 4/10)
The best: These are the Melodifestivalen performances I’m living for, or in one word – perfection. Benjamin is such a good performer – he’s loose on stage, dances and sings very well and the camera direction is genius (except for one long shot that takes us out of “Benjamin’s lights world”). The backing vocals are a bit too high. I would like to hear Benjamin a bit more, but yet we hear him and know he can sing very well. Unlike many other songs this year that have some very interesting staging – this one has both the song and the staging. I wouldn’t mind sending this one to Eurovision. (Ron, 9.5/10)
The worst: Listening to “Dance You Off” for the first time, I immediately felt it was more like part two of Benjamin’s 2017 entry “Good Lovin’”. It has the same kind of vibe, tempo and rhythm. And it wasn’t that exciting to listen to. The song is very slow, almost boring, and the chorus doesn’t stick out that much from the rest of the song. It all feels very monotonous and flat. But I do like the visual staging and choreography. It feels like Benjamin is in a music video rather than a live TV show, a little like Måns Zelmerlöw’s “Heroes” performance. The staging makes the song more interesting, with Benjamin dancing in a neon space world. (Tobias, 6/10)
The best: It’s anthemic, it’s current and it’s fresh. Samir & Viktor may not be the best vocalists, but you can see they clearly improved from their last two entries. “Shuffla” is — by far — their best Melfest entry and has “summer hit” written all over it. While you expect slick and polished performances from Melfest, the duo brings what Sweden needs at the moment: authenticity instead of 100% perfection. I wouldn’t mind seeing this one in Lisbon. (Bernardo, 8.5/10)
The worst: This is a typical Viktor and Samir song. It’s catchy and it’s fun! The song itself is nothing wow but these guys know how to entertain and give a good show on the stage. This is the first time the duo got directly to the final and I’m not surprised. They were the only act that gave a great show, had a lot of energy as always and it is a catchy song. It’s not winning material but these guys are not here to win, they are here to have a good time and give a good show. (Tobias, 4/10)
MELODIFESTIVALEN 2018: REVIEWS AND RANKINGS
- Felix Sandman – “Every Single Day” (7.29)
- Benjamin Ingrosso – “Dance You Off” (7.25)
- Samir & Viktor – “Shuffla” (7.11)
- Mariette – “For You” (7.07)
- Margaret – “In My Cabana” (7.04) *
- Renaida – “All the Feels” (7.04) *
- Jessica Andersson – “Party Voice” (6.68)
- Liamoo – “Last Breath” (6.32)
- John Lundvik – “My Turn” (5.93)
- Martin Almgren – “A Bitter Lullaby” (5.64)
- Méndez – “Everyday” (4.82)
- Rolandz – “Fuldans” (3.36)
* Ties are broken by preferential vote.
What do you think? Who is your favourite in the Melfest final? Who would you like to see represent Sweden in Lisbon? Share your thoughts below!