Sweden - Alper Yurtseven

Deltävling (Semi-final) 4 of Melodifestivalen 2018 was held at Fjällräven Center in Örnsköldsvik on February 24.

Below is a brief review of all the 7 songs:

“Icarus” by Emmi Christensson:

It’s pretty hard not to hear the resemblance to the Austrian winner “Rise like a Phoenix” in 2014 — a milder, less exciting version. The choreography and visual effects were reminiscent of “Rise like a Phoenix” as well. Having said that it was just an okay song. The performer Emmi Christensson had a soft but relatively powerful voice. The overall performance was obviously not as strong as that of Conchita Wurst.

“Mitt Paradis” by Elias Abbas:

Probably my least favorite of this semi-final. Very busy choreography, in line with the loud music. Apparently the youngest singer of the night, Elias Abbas had just turned 16. So I’m sure it was more appealing to a younger crowd.

It reminded me of “Allez Ola Olé,” the entry performed by Jessy Matador, who represented France at the Eurovision Song Contest 2010.

“Break That Chain” by Felicia Olsson:

Typical mid-tempo, mediocre song, in line with the first entry “Icarus,” maybe a little weaker overall. Not bad vocals. Overall, nothing offensive but nothing new or exciting. 

“Fuldans” by Rolandz: (Final)

This is the winning song that went directly to the final, which is totally unfortunate, in my humble opinion. Lyrics and music by famous Fredrik Kempe. Performed by Rolandz, a dance band or “Danseband, a Swedish term for a bandinspired by swing, schlager, country, jazz, and rock. The main influence for rock-oriented bands is the rock music of the 1950s and 1960s.” (Reference: Wikipedia) So that’s exactly how it sounded. It was retro, loud, mediocre and boring. Nothing new or exciting. It almost made me think it might be a joke entry. Ridiculous costumes and ridiculous song!

“Never Learn” by Olivia Eliasson: (Second Chance)

Not my favorite. I find it repetitive, boring, a little whiny and tedious. Dancers with fluorescent yellow jumpsuits on the background are not able to save the song.

“Every Single Day” Felix Sandman: (Second Chance)

A ballad, another very young singer. Sweden seems to have a love affair with immature, boyish and vapid looks. I find the song and his style tedious, romantic in an intoxicating way. I kept thinking the music without the lyrics would have been more tolerable and interesting. 

“For You” by Mariette: (Final)

Pretty catchy, easy to listen, easy to remember song. Slow start that picks up. Probably the most reasonable song of the whole bunch in this semi-final. Smart use of lights, visually appealing, relatively simple and clever choreography. Occasionally the performance resembled Laureen’s “Euphoria” but easy to watch and digest. Maybe this is the winner in the grand final?

Now we have the Second Chance and then the Final to look forward to. We will know the Swedish winner in two weeks!