Latvia! Supernova Final Preview

I’m superexcited for Supernova because I WILL BE VIEWING IT LIVE!!!!! Just me and Kozmens and a room full of other people (but most importantly me and Kozmens).

Given everyone’s limited bandwidth this weekend, I would actually recommend Supernova as one of the best options in the Saturday night marathon, because it’s got some absolutely banging tunes and the added bonus of Kozmens declaring his delight at seeing me in the audience (what? You don’t speak Latvian! You don’t know what he’s saying!)

Markus Riva – You Make Me So Crazy

Seven-time Eurovision entrant Markus Riva is back again, but this time, he’s brought a real banger and the latest in male fashion – the harness. Sure, the rest of his outfit looks like it came out of the Matrix, and his hair makes him look like Spike from Buffy, but the song is really good. Really really good! Eurofans have him tipped to win but we all know it’s going to be the Dzili Violets featuring Kozmens.

Edgars Kreilis – Cherry Absinthe

Oh my god, this song is so bad and yet SO SO GOOD.

Listen to its opening bars – it’s a siren and then some subtle piano? And then the first lyrics we hear are: “I don’t remember a lot of things,” meaning we’ve either got an incredibly dumb protagonist or someone who has lots of alcoholic blackouts. Strap in folks, because the song is pretty much this weird all the way through – although you should have guessed that because the song is titled CHERRY ABSINTHE. And it turns out that vile and potent concoction wasn’t enough – after drinking it, they felt they needed something. The whole song is basically a confession of arson.

Of course, the whole thing is a total banger, with a fantastic breakdown in the third Act that features handclaps, a slow build, and moany background vocals.

This slaps hard. HARD. And while it doesn’t seem to be on the favourites list of many people, I would not be sad at all if this went to Tel Aviv.

Aivo Oskis – Somebody’s Got My Lover

No, Aivo, nobody’s got your lover. SHE LEFT YOU. That whole thing about seeing you a decade later was just her way of being really nice to you rather than breaking your heart all at once. Although it appears it didn’t work, because you are here on national television claiming you’re never going to find another lover. Don’t doubt the power of exposure, Aivo. This song is likely the world’s most effective personal ad, because some Latvian woman or man out there will see this performance and think: “Challenge accepted!”

Double Faced Eels – Fire

There’s just something about Fire that doesn’t gel for me. Maybe it’s the fact that the opening chorus sounds like a Bono-voiced stadium anthem. Maybe it’s the fact that the middle uses an amazing synth bit that would sound phenomenal in a Gerai Gerai song, but very much not phenomenal here. Maybe it’s the backing vocals that come in a third of the way through the song. All I know is that I am not a fan.

Also, what’s with the tiny lick of fire on the palm of his hand? If you really want to bring intensity, you should have someone on stage coming out in a full body flame suit to be a backup dancer. We all know that the band aren’t actually playing their instruments. Surely you could spare one of them for a fantastic visual effect, right?

Dzili Violets featuring Kozmens – Tautas Dziesma

We all love Baltic Boys, right, so why don’t we send a whole band full of them?

I realise that Dzili Violets are a ‘joke’ entry, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t also excellent performers. The camera angles used during their staging means that the performance feels vibrant and alive even though the performers are largely static.

Of course, the magic ingredient in all of this is Kozmens, who bursts forth with an impassioned speech in French before switching to Latvian.

Forget Justs and Markus Riva. Kozmens is the OG Latvian Thirst Trap. He’s fluent in Latvian, English, and French. He’s a vegetarian who helps to host a cooking show. He’s someone who can manage to make dancing a Beaver costume sexy.

Beaver costume, I hear you say?

Yes, Kozmens is the Riga Beaver, the man who entertained those streaming various Supernovas during the ad breaks. He was dearly missed during last year’s Supernova, so I’m glad that he’s appearing on stage this year.

Laime Pilniga – Awe

Awe, no. This is very much acoustic guitar man playing in a coffeehouse song, and by the end of the song, he just seems whiny. I can’t believe they cut Laika Upe for this.

Samanta Tina – Cutting the Wire

Ladies and Gentlemen, Samanta Tina is NOT HERE TO PLAY.

I love her big voice. I love her unapologetic kicking to the curb of the scrub who inspired this song. I love her visual references to mid-90s culture.

Do I think this will go to Eurovision? No. It does get a bit repetitive in the third act, but if it does, I will be in the front row screaming, “I’m cutting the wire! Wire wire wire!”

Carousel – That Night

Okay, I love this country tinged song as a song. It’s something that I’d enjoy when it came on a playlist, or listening to at night as I was getting ready to relax into sleep.

But as a Eurovision entry? I mean, I’ll get behind it if it’s chosen. But in a year when Latvia could send an absolute banger of a song, why choose this one?

CONCLUSION Dzili Violets featuring Kozmens for the win. No contest. No debate. Case closed.

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