Picture: @iravgreen/Krut Facebook

She’s bringing her bandura and taking her music to a new level. Krut, one of the ten finalists in Vidbir, is among the most talked-about entries in Ukraine’s Eurovision 2023 selection. With her song “Kolyskova” (Lullaby), she reflects on the life of vulnerable children living through war in her homeland.

Vidbir 2023: Krut “Kolyskova”

Twenty-six-year-old Maryna Krut has been known among Eurovision fans ever since her magical song “99” finished third in Vidbir 2020. You’ll remember that the group Go_A won that edition, before taking Europe by storm a year later in Rotterdam.

Playing her bandura, a traditional Ukrainian string instrument, Krut has become a household name. She rose to fame during the eighth season of X Factor Ukraine, where she failed to make it through to the live shows.

However, that did not stop her from making music. In 2018, she released her debut album Arche, followed by Albino in 2019. 

For foreigners, her stage name can be a bit confusing. The last letter of Krut’s name in Ukrainian Cyrillic is a soft sign, which is an untranslatable letter for the English language. It’s definitely not a “b”. 

What do the “Kolyskova” lyrics mean?

In “Kolyskova”, Krut sings about the life of a baby during war. Starting with the classical Ukrainian lullaby “lyuli-lyuli”, which also features in Kalush Orchestra’s “Stefania”, she describes the situation of a mother trying to put her child to sleep as predators stalk the country.

We don’t know where they are — and where the cradle rocks. They could be in an air raid shelter during a bombing or in their home during heavy fighting in a city on the frontlines or even in a maternity hospital, which have also endured shelling during Russia’s war. 

Choosing a child, the most vulnerable of human beings, as the main character of the song, captures the fragility of life. Helpless and completely dependent on others, they’re incapable of surviving the savagery and cruelty of war on their own. 

The song makes an allusion to typical forces within children’s nightmares, such as beasts underneath a child’s bed and scary animals on the outside of the windows. As she sings: “The beasts are in a fierce battle/ The night will come and also pass/ Daddy will chase away the beasts”.  

Next to that, the song makes a reference to families destroyed as result of the war. The father of the child is not near them, but is fighting on the battle field: .”Sleep, sleep, sleep/ Dad guards the steppes”. 

“Kolyskova” lyrics – Krut (Vidbir 2023)

Original lyrics

Люлі, люлі, сину мій
Звірі йдуть у лютий бій
Нічка буде та й мине
Татко звірів прожене

А ти спи, спи, спи
Я малюю тобі сни
Спи, спи, спи
Тато береже степи

То не місяць, а вогні
То не звірі – вороги
Та нам хижі не страшні
В нас є воля і пісні

А ти спи, спи, спи
Я малюю тобі сни
Спи, спи, спи
Тато береже степи

Оповив хати залізобетон
В пікселі брати стережуть твій сон
Стали ми усі сильними з весни
Щоб ти, сину, жив, в світі без війни
Люлі-люлі, ну, спи, малятко, спи
Я вже не боюсь і не бійся ти

Спи, спи, спи
Спи, спи, спи
Спи, спи, спи

English translation

Lyuli, lyuli, my son
The beasts are in a fierce battle
The night will come and also pass
Daddy will chase away the beasts

And you, sleep, sleep, sleep
I will paint you dreams
Sleep, sleep, sleep
Dad guards the steppes

It’s not the moon, but a fire
Those are not beasts, they are enemies
We are not afraid of predators
Inside us is the will and a song

And you sleep, sleep, sleep
I will paint you dreams
Sleep, sleep, sleep
Dad guards the steppes

The khatas* are wrapped up in ferroconcrete
In pixels, the brothers are guarding your dream
We have all become stronger since the Spring
So, you, son, will live in a world without war
Lyuli-lyuli, well, sleep, little one, sleep
I am already not afraid, and you shouldn’t be afraid either 

Sleep, sleep, sleep
Sleep, sleep, sleep
Sleep, sleep, sleep

*Ukrainian countryside houses

Do you like Krut’s “Kolyskova”? Are you hoping that they will win Vidbir 2023? Let us know in the comments down below!

 
48 Comments
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Mr X
Mr X
1 year ago

Greece 1976

Leendert Jan
Leendert Jan
1 year ago

Oh my, I’m already picturing what this could look like on a Eurovision stage.. this song is simple, subtle and beautiful, and in the current situation Ukraine is in this feels really haunting. And Ukraine always goes full-on with the staging, I’m sure they can make something out of this that will hit really hard.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
1 year ago

Are we going to get individual articles for the other songs in Ukraine’s selection?

Frisian esc
Frisian esc
1 year ago

I mean esc juries give you 12 points if you sing about the weather, the weatheeeeeeeeeeeeeeer

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
1 year ago
Reply to  Frisian esc

It took me a while to realize you were referencing the lyrics to fade to Black.

Pablo BLN
Pablo BLN
1 year ago

A timeless masterpiece. I hope this will go to Liverpool

Amar pelos dois
Amar pelos dois
1 year ago

Su much better than Jerry´s average song. Go Krutb!

Ria NL
Ria NL
1 year ago

This is the song i like most, I hope that she ,s winning the national final for Ukraine and goes to Liverpool

Thallo
Thallo
1 year ago

When are the songs out?

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
1 year ago
Reply to  Thallo

I think the songs are actually going to come out on the nights that fik will happen So we’re not really gonna get to know the songs until the live shows.

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
1 year ago

She has such a great sound and I really like this actual song. It’s just, I think musically it would get a bit lost at Eurovision. It’s incredibly subtle and doesn’t really kick on.
I was hoping she’d develop a bit more of an impactful song structure after her last Vidbir entry but this seems to have the same issues. It’s a shame as I think she’s definitely on the road to being a very good Eurovision entrant for Ukraine down the line.

Midnight Gold
Midnight Gold
1 year ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

Let them do their thing and stop encouraging artists to alter their sound just to fit these misplaced ideas of what suits or what would work at ESC, this mentality is so damaging to the contest. Both of her entries are great and Kolyskova would 100% be one of the highlights in Liverpool.

Vivian
Vivian
1 year ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

I would definitely not say this could get lost. We’ve seen that more humble songs can do really well in the competition if handled correctly. Examples would be Lithuania 2018, Cyprus 2004, Belgium 2010, and of course Portugal 2017 which won the whole contest in 2017. It would all come down to her live vocal and her staging. We saw in 2020 that Krut is a good live singer, and Ukraine pretty much never messes up their stagings. I still hope Krut takes the win next Saturday and will go far in the competition in May.

Artem
Artem
1 year ago

WHAT? Ukraine had uptempo fun songs since 2017,not having super deep message, what do you mean? Even Stefania have no political message, im confused how many people write about , “OH MAYBE YOU FINALLY SEND FUN SONG?”

Zanoni
Zanoni
1 year ago

“In pixels, the brothers are guarding your dream”

Odd. Some kind of mistranslation, or am I missing a reasonable interpretation?

Marina
Marina
1 year ago
Reply to  Zanoni

Pixels means military uniform

Jamie
Jamie
1 year ago
Reply to  Marina

Digital camouflage to be exact. It is used everywhere in modern military, not only on uniforms.

Zanoni
Zanoni
1 year ago
Reply to  Marina

Makes sense, thanks

Zanoni
Zanoni
1 year ago

For Ukraine’s song to have a fun, carefree vibe would be a weird denial of reality. A political subject doesn’t tell you anything about the song’s quality. It could be blunt and cheerleader-ish, or it could be artful and subtle. I put this song on the artful side of the ledger.

bitizdrava666
bitizdrava666
1 year ago

Such an amazing song, second in my top (only behind Jerry)

Jamie
Jamie
1 year ago

This song is just mesmerizing. I hope it wins.

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago

France 2018.

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas

Loreen 2017, on the same subject. This has never been just Ukraine, like too many people seem to think.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas

There have been countless Eurovision songs that have touched upon politics and social issues since the very beginning. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=L56-dW0-Aik

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago
Reply to  BadWoolfGirl

It wouldn’t be art if people couldn’t express themselves however they liked.

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago

Hungary 2014.

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas

France 1968 was about the murder of a woman. Monaco 1967 about nuclear war. I don’t want 40 Serhats every year.

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago

Finland 2011.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
1 year ago

This is actually my favorite out of vidbir 2023, but I still expect jerry Heil to take the title unless something disastrous happens. We’ll see what will happen this Saturday, which I can’t believe is only happening in a few days. Our first national final of the season.

Escfan
1 year ago

This song has a very mature lullaby quality to it. The instrument sounds lovely and the haunting vocal reminds me of Giudi from the Czech selection last year. I wasn’t aware on initial listen that the song had references to the ongoing conflict.

zelenovi
zelenovi
1 year ago

We have all become stronger since the Spring” – goosebumps

now that i see the light
now that i see the light
1 year ago

I have a random and strange feeling that Jerry will probably win Vidbir but i feel like she’s not gonna win Esc. For KRUT it seems hard to win Vidbir but she actually would have won Esc

Bartek
Bartek
1 year ago

I’m obsessed with these sounds! It’s simply magical. You fly away into your dreams when listening to this song.
It’s pure art when read the lyrics it grows even more for me!
Music is feelings )

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago

Ireland 1996. Italy 1974, or at least RAI thought so. Portugal 2011.

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas

“I am the voice of the past, that will always be filled my sorrows, and blood in my fields… bring me your peace, and my wounds… they will heal”

The “voice” is the soul of Ireland, talking about British oppression and all the troubles in Northern Ireland. Asking for peace. The Good Friday Peace Agreement was then signed in 1998.

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas

“I am the voice, of your hunger and pain”

1840s Famine.

Benito Camelo
Benito Camelo
1 year ago

It’s a beautiful song and probably the best of its pack, but at the same time I think Ukraine should move on to something fun and nice to listen.
No one knows when will the war end (myself, I would’ve rather it never happened), but they can’t keep being on that mood of getting political and self pitiful

Matt
Matt
1 year ago
Reply to  Benito Camelo

I understand Eurofans not liking it or wanting something different from Ukraine, and even those complaining about political sympathy benefitting from the competition, even though I feel differently about that.

Expecting them to move on from it, and not stop being in that mood and being self-pitiful is hilarious, they’ve literally been invaded, families been displaced, thousands have died. But yeah I wonder if they’ve thought about just getting over it.

Artem
Artem
1 year ago
Reply to  Benito Camelo

What do you mean, since 2017 Ukraine had uptempo funny songs, now it’s time for changes especially in this situation,

Stevia
Stevia
1 year ago
Reply to  Benito Camelo

When has Ukraine ever send something sad or war related besides their dreadful 2016 entry?
What do you expect them to sing about? Puppies?

gea
gea
1 year ago
Reply to  Stevia

Dreadful?!

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago
Reply to  gea

It’s definitely full of dread.

Sol Stevia
Sol Stevia
1 year ago
Reply to  gea

Dreadful to watch, dreadful to listen to and dreadful singer. Yes : )

Ang
Ang
1 year ago
Reply to  Benito Camelo

I don’t think Ukraine is looking for sympathy & I certainly don’t feel they would either want or need it. Empathy, yes, but that’s because we’re all humans, but the Ukrainians aren’t a pathetic, helpless nation. They’re currently fighting to the death to repel the largest country on earth invading them, & they’re doing a great job. Self-pity is not a term used about Ukranian people. Warriors, fearless, titans, yes. Pitiful, no.

Mati
Mati
1 year ago

Political song contest

Jack Needham
Jack Needham
1 year ago
Reply to  Mati

It’s not a political song contest.

Vivian
Vivian
1 year ago

This is such a beautiful with infinite potential for that Ukrainian staging magic we’ve seen throughout the years. Please, Ukraine… send her. She’s your best option.

Alfie28
Alfie28
1 year ago

First time hearing this. It’s BEAUTIFUL.