After last week’s semifinal, I think that the only way France doesn’t send Bilal to Eurovision is if he ends up choking on stage and forgetting all his lyrics. But I was also surprised by last week’s semifinal – the surprise non-qualification of Florina, the strong showing of a character straight out of a Jean-Pierre Jeunet film, and that great performance of La Haut. So I’m keeping my mind open (and my fingers crossed for Tracy De Sa). Here’s my rundown of what to expect:
Doutson – Sois un bon fils
Why are we only getting a minute of Doutson’s song? And why is the minute we’re getting so heavily auto-tuned? And why are all of Doutson’s other songs that I can find on YouTube also heavily auto-tuned? The unpredictability! It’s so exciting!
Emmanuel Moire – La Promesse
I could swear I heard this song somewhere before. Was it on the French television show Dawson’s Ruisseau? Or over the credits of that French film, 27 Les Robes?
Despite being sung by a serious-looking bearded man, I know that this is the song that plays when Pierre and Madeline stare into each others eyes during a slow dance at whatever the French equivalent of prom is, and then the camera fades to black.
That’s all to say that while this might be performed competently on stage, it’s still an eminently forgettable piece of background soundtrack.
Gabriella – On cherche encore
I like this song. It combines the charm of Alma with a version of shouty Zibbz that actually works (unlike the real Zibbz). It’s catchy, it’s got a chorus I can see myself jumping up and down and yelling, and there are some interesting background effects. The only question is whether this very well-produced studio version can be replicated on stage, and considering the awfulness of the sound mix last week…
Noemie – Ma Petite Famile
So I was bouncing along to the joyful Ma Petite Famile, delivered with a winning charm by Noemie and her costume changes, and then all of a sudden this popped onto the screen:
NOEMIE! THERE ARE NO POLITICS AT EUROVISION!
Seriously, though, for a song that’s supposed to bring me three minutes of escape, as noted in your lyrics, you just pulled me back into my intense scrolling for updates on whether or not there was any suborning of perjury. Noemie, girl,I come to Eurovision to get away from all of that! Don’t make me hate your song for becoming a Twitter trigger!
PhilipElise – Madame La Paix
This heat’s traditionally French chanson goes to PhilipElise (although it seems to be mostly Elise doing all the heavy lifting here.) There’s a lot of accordion here, and some interesting electronic effects, and the song actually does something in the third act. If performed well, this should go on to the final, but a lot will depend on the staging.
Seemone – Tous Les Deux
Merci, Seemone, for including English subtitles on your video! Now if you could only include an four-to-the-floor beat when you talk about dancing…
…and wait! This is about your father? EEEEEUUUUUUWWWWW. I thought he was your Daddy, but not your Papa. I can’t get behind this.
Also, the better half saw this video and immediately made a Renault Clio joke that sent me down a YouTube hole, which you can enjoy here: Vincent Cassel, Reeves and Mortimer, and a whole setup that HAS to have influenced this video. At this point, if Seemone doesn’t drive a Renault Clio on stage, I’m going to be very disappointed.
The Divaz – La Voix d’Aretha
Yeah, I’ve already listened to this, and I’m…skeptical. Like, why mention Aretha if you don’t want to be compared to her? DON’T BE ADAM LEVINE is what I’m saying, Divaz.
Tracy De Sa – Por Acqi
OH HELL YES. Please, please, please let the French Cardi B make it through to the final. I’m really nervous that this is going to require a level of energy which the French 2 sound system will not be able to match, but this is my favourite song of the heat. My only wish is that Tracy could get a more bored, nasal affect when she sings, ‘whiskey cocktails run’
Ugo – Ce qui me blesse
The French Melovin, everyone! He’s #blessed! Look, I am so over pretty boys with soulful voices and guitars at this point. It’s been done. And done. And done. And done. And Ugo is not bringing anything new to the table.
C’mon, he’s even got the patented lip bite move down. You know, the one that means he’s SERIOUS. There’s a time and place for this type of song, but in a heat that contains Noemie and Tracy de Sa, I’m just not feeling Ugo.