Preview IX: Bulgaria & Lithuania

I didn’t expect that to happen, but it did: We have two returners meeting up for today’s round of review. Ninth episode of Music for Europe vs. Eurovision features a Lithuanian whose first appearance featured a blindfold and a Bulgarian whose first appearance featured Bulgarian and one of the better haircuts of Eurovision. Please welcome the country of drums and water and the country of the world’s most complicated and long NF system: Bulgaria and Lithuania!

Bulgaria: Poli Genova – If Love Was A Crime

To this day, Na Inat is by far my favourite Bulgarian entry despite my recent appreciation of Water. So of course I was excited to hear they’re back with Poli Genova, and of course my expectations for her were high. The awesomeness of her hair is still the same (or even improved) so I was optimistic.

Ugh. It’s not love that’s a crime, it’s crushing the hopes of this poor writer in such a way that is. Look, I am all for changing up your style and can very well understand why she’d want to, but whenever I heard her performing the two back to back I can’t help but find If Love Was A Crime remarkably overshadowed by her first try. Which is a pity, because it’s not a bad song in its own right. But I am the Eurovision household’s guitar boy after all. This is way too electronic, too pop, too tame, too conventional to catch my attention, and it won’t be saved by a line of Bulgarian or the (unbelievably effective) short sounds in the background. Overall, it’s incredibly effectively and well produced and pretty surely the most competent and professional Bulgarian entry ever. But that’s exactly part of why I prefer Na Inat. It lost the rebellious individualist soul that was there back then.

Even the lyrics and the visuals sorta grew up. Away with the youth rebelliousness of “Fuck the bad signs I’m gonna make it to the top”, here comes three minutes of singing about love. Again, it’s super well done, there’s nothing to criticize, but to me who loves a good share of rebellion, it leaves a big load of disappointment as well. And I know this is very unfair – it’s not as if this was bad, and I comparte it to one of my favourites – but she set the bar so high herself. I may not be the target group though, and she’s clearly aiming for success. And not bad so. I will honour that with 6/10.

Lithuania: Donny Montell – I’ve Been Waiting For This Night

Lithuania has been lagging behind the other two Baltics lately, sometimes justified and sometimes not. But generally they tend to be a bit more boring and conservative, breaking that up only occasionally (hello, Vilija!) – it’s the Denmark of the Baltics so to say. And this year they tried to live up to the expectation, one could think. Even the eternally long NF was not too exciting anymore. Did it at least produce something good?

Oh my, they were confident with this huh? Shooting the video in Stockholm and all that. I don’t mean to be disrespectful, but it looks like Donny will pay a lot for that night by the looks of this girl he meets, doesn’t he? I mean, a girl who is not wearing pants smoking outside a bar in an empty street all alone and acting like that with a guy she just met. It raises suspicions. It does give a totally new meaning to Love is Blind though, I guess.

Musically, there’s not really anything to say, is there? I assume he was only filming it in Stockholm cause he needed to go there and pick up the song after all. It’s about the most Swedish thing possible apart from a bunch of köttbullar and crispbread in a IKEA shelf painted blue and yellow. This is a typical case of something that will look (and do) great in a lower budget NF just because it got an actual production and someone who can sing enough to not make it painful but will fall right on his never-smiling face in May. About the same trap Switzerland keeps walking into. I kind of wanna be harsh, but it doesn’t even let you do that. And thats why it saves itself 4/10 points.

That concludes the returner night. Be back next time when I am looking for a Lighthouse with France and Croatia!

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