And Sweden kicked of the first heat of Melodifestivalen, one of the most waited national selectives, which this year was rebranded as “Mello”.
The show was hosted by David Lindgren, who also did the job last year, and featured 7 hopefuls to get the golden ticket to Lisbon in May.
The selective voting is also the same as the previous years, on the 4 heats and the Andra Chansen (the second chance round) all the power goes to the Swedish public at home, and on the final we have a mix of 50% of the voting from the Swedish public and 50% by the international jury.
This heat featured unicorn masks, Dirty Dancing, dancing grapes, lots of light bulbs and of course, songs! (which is the reason we’re here, right?)
So, let’s move on with the candidates:
Sigrid Bernson - "Patrick Swayze"
Sigrid is a professional dancer turned to singer. Well, she is indeed a good dancer and nice performer. Her vocals were not strong enough, but the song style helped as there was a lot of backing vocals on it. The song itself sounded, and looked like, an Ace Wilder’s song made for a younger age public, even that most of the people under 16 years old don’t know who Patrick Swayze was.
Well it was fun, but not a candidate strong enough for Lisbon.
RESULT: Through to the Second Chance round
John Lundvik - "My Turn"
Lundvik is known in Sweden as a good ballad songwriter, he even did the official song for their Royal Weddings! But he had few chances to be on the spotlight himself. And that’s all his song is about. “My Turn” sounded to me as the most honest song on this heat, Lundvik is really telling his story and it was perfectly (for not saying that is was too literal) translated to the public. It was a good ballad, a bit outdated, like the ones we heard at the 90’s, but it was effective.
RESULT – My Turn is through to the final!
Renaida - "All the Feels"
And the tempo go up again on Mello, as Renaida enters the stage with her song. “All the feels” is modern and it was something close of what we can hear on the radios today. But, for me, the lyrics sounded a bit off form the instrumental part, sounding a bit confusing and less catchier. But Renaida’s vocals were on point and the performance was great visually.
RESULT: Through to the Second Chance round
Edward Blom - "Livet på en pinne"
Most of the people asked why this kind of song appears on the lineup every year. Well folks, comedy music is a thing too! The song, besides it’s subject and bad vocals, is well composed. The staging was very impressive and funny, the problem was that Edward didn’t seemed comfortable on the stage, everyone could see a bit of nerves on his face. Then, why should we vote on a comedy number when the own singer seemed nervous on it?
Kikki Danielsson - "Osby Tennessee"
And the good vibrations queen Kikki Danielsson comes back to the Melodifestivalen stage with the second autobiographical song of the night. Doing what she knows best, country. Last year we had the same thing, but with Charlotte Perrelli (“Mitt Liv”), and the swedish public didn’t bought this idea yet. Kikki song was great and she was feeling it, but it was not enough fo get a ticket to the final.
Kamferdrops - "Solen lever kvar hos dig"
Kamferdrops had a hit in Sweden this year, which was a update to an old Kikki Danielsson schlager song. With "Solen lever kvar hos dig", she keeps the same “dreamy” style and the saxophone. The performance featured magic, pyrotechnics (on the saxophone!), lot’s of pink and lot’s of clones of the singer. The song was nice, but, before the heat, it was on the news that the song was published on the internet since 2009. The Mello organization haven’t disqualified the entry, but then, the public did the job.
Benjamin Ingrosso "Dance You Off"
Benjamin comes back after the 5th place on last years Melodifestivalen with Good Lovin’. Being the most waited performance of the night, Pernilla Wahlgren’s son delivered a fantastic performance with lots of light effects and dancing. The song is very current and something what we can see Justin Timberlake singing (the staging even reminds me of Justin’s Rock Your Body). Well, everything was on point and perfectly done. Then, he got deserved place to the final.
RESULT: Dance You Off is through to the final!
Is one of the two winners of this heat, Benjamin and John, heading to Lisbon? We’ll have to hear the other 21 songs on the next 3 heats to know!