Look, if this is because I made fun of Portugal’s contestants yesterday, I apologize. I take it all back. Because Portugal’s entries, while often atonal and weird, are at least something memorable. Whereas Britain, in its infinite wisdom, has released nothing memorable.
These entries are the aural equivalent of stereotypical British food – overcooked, bland, and completely without spice. And that’s not the fault of the singers, but of the system that has songwriting by committee. Also, BBC, paying for three songs instead of six is clearly not the way to go .
Why not let singers enter their own songs, ones that reflect who they are? Otherwise, this whole thing is just a warmed over karaoke night with songs that aren’t recognisable.
I know that thing might improve once I see them staged, or once some of them go through a remix, but honestly, I hoped for better.
Let’s go through these:
Kerrie-Anne: Sweet Sweet Lies
Okay! So this is the best of the bunch, even though the lyrics are slightly cringy (skin to skin, eww, use condoms everybody), it at least has a beat, and a fun vocal. I mean, it’s something that wouldn’t make it out of its final at Melodifestivalen, but I’ll take it. Let’s just hope Kerrie-Anne nails this vocal during the live broadcast. (Oh god I forgot about the live broadcast that I’m going to need to watch aren’t I?)
Michael Rice: Bigger than Us
When I hear this song, I feel like I’m watching someone’s audition tape for the X Factor. It’s got soaring vocals and…well, nothing much else.
Also, I know this song is ostensibly about love, but I feel like releasing a something titled ‘It’s Bigger than Us’ during the era of Brexit is just asking for bad news. It’s bigger than us! Don’t worry about! When you’re eating a diet of turnips and nothing but turnips in six months, it’ll all be fine!
Holly Tandy: Bigger than Us
I think this one is the one that sounds the most original out of the bunch, and is the one I can see myself singing along to in Tel Aviv after I’ve listened to it so many times I get Stockholm Syndrome. It’s got a big clappy bit near the end, and Holly makes it seem more like a song about love than a song about Brexit.
Jordan Clark: Freaks
Hey BBC, here’s a tip – if you want to sell a song called Freaks, maybe don’t get someone who looks like they’ve just stepped out of a CW drama to sell it, okay? I can’t believe that Jordan Clarke has spent any time with the Freaks, let alone enough time to serve as their recruiting agent.
The one validating thing about this song is that it uses the term ‘soccer’. Suck it, everyone who makes me use the term ‘American’ before football!
Oh yay! A girl band! I was looking forward to seeing how this singsongy chorus could be made worse, and it turns out it’s when it’s lovingly rendered by three harmonising vocals.
Anisa: Sweet Lies
Okay, this version is full of melisma and…not much else. If you want to shine like an Aretha or Christina or Ariana, you still need a good song to go behind it. My least favorite of all of these.
So after listening to all of these, my prediction is: La Venda.