Saturday, February 06, 2010
Salem Al Fakir in Melodifestivalen tonight!
Salem will sing "Keep On Walking" tonight in the first Melodifestivalen heat in Örnsköldsvik. I think he'll have a lot of new fans after tonight! So it's time for a gratuitous quick plug here: check out my fansite Planet Salem if you want to find out more about Sweden's greatest living musical genius!
Of course it will be up to the Swedish viewers whether or not Salem qualifies to Globen or Andra Chansen: we will find out the answer just before 9.30 pm Swedish time tonight.
SVT published one-minute clips of the songs yesterday. Based on what I've heard, the competition is wide open and I keep changing my mind about who I think will qualify.
"Unstoppable" - Ola: it's a likeable catchy pop song, cashing in on his previous hit Natalie ("Natalie is coming back for more") - this will be a massive radio hit although I don't like it as much as "Love In Stereo" from 2 years ago...and I wonder if his vocals may let him down? However he is now high profile enough to be a guaranteed qualifier.
"A Place To Stay" - Jenny Silver: this is a strange one. It's got a club vibe and reminiscent of Madonna in places, although her reliance on the big silver hand may just be a distracting gimmick too far.
"You're Makin' Me Hot-Hot-Hot" - Linda Pritchard: I like her because she's got red hair, and all us red haired girls must stick together, but it's all a bit too conveyor-belt for me with a 'Single Ladies' type backing track and a pop diva sound, it could end up with a "Disconnect Me"-type result.
"Road Salt" - Pain Of Salvation: I expected something different from this rock ballad - the clip didn't really go anywhere and would need to hear it in full before making a judgement. Based on the success of Takida over the past couple of years, don't write this off either - it could provide a "Snälla Snälla" surprise result. Or flop completely.
"The Saviour" - Anders Ekborg: "Just one Cornetto" anyone? This is just a bit too obvious and too close to last year's winner to take seriously. Nevertheless its theatrical rock-opera style will find an audience among the traditionalists and I'm sure he'll sing it well.
"I Did It For Love" - Jessica Andersson: this one has been compared to "Empty Room" and will probably be performed in the same style. An old fashioned swaying ballad, which again will win over the traditionalists - but I'm disappointed with it and wish she'd sung something uptempo.
"Singel" - Frispråkarn: reasonably decent well-staged rap song here, but rap doesn't really go down well at MF and therefore I'd say it won't go further.
"Keep On Walking" - Salem Al Fakir: no gimmicks, just Salem sitting at his piano, with a song with uplifting lyrics and a complex, breathtaking musical arrangement. Based on the one minute clip it may be too musically ambitious for some Melodifestivalen fans, but whether he wins or loses that won't change the fact that this is a fantastic song.
Bring it on!! There were positive reports from last night's dress rehearsal about the new MF presenters Dolph Lundgren, Christine Meltzer and Mååååååååååååns Zelmerlöw so I hope they give us a good show too.