Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I want the real thing now

Another set of Melodifestivalen artists was announced today. All these singers will be making their debut as Melodifestivalen performers (well, the name acts--that doesn't count being a backing singer). All this information comes from SVT (to which all picture credit goes), Gylleneskor, and Aftonbladet; we'll have to wait for the real QX/Schlagerprofilerna update.

Mikael Rickfors, "Du Vinner Över Mig" (Thomas G:son)
I've never heard of Mikael before, but apparently he's played with some rock bands from the '60's/'70's and then did some solo work. I think the description for this song says it's in an '80's style--the sort of thing you'd wear a leather suit while singing.

Heat, "1000 Miles" (Niklas Jarl/David Stenmarck)
This is the song that it had been speculated would go to the Poodles or Martin Stenmarck, but instead it's being sung by someone else I've never heard of, rock group Heat. "1000 Miles" is described as being a love declaration in the '80's hard rock style.

Molly Sandén, "Så Vill Stjärnorna" (Bobby Ljunggren/Marcos Ubeda/Ingela Pling Forsman)
After winning the youth equivalent of Melodifestivalen in 2006, Molly Sandén, now old enough to compete in the real thing, makes her debut in the proper Melodifestivalen. "Det finaste någon kan få," her song from 2006, was a genuinely great ballad, which is why despite the fact that "Så Vill Stjärnorna" is described as a beautiful ballad about the magic of destiny finally happening, I'm interested to hear it. Molly herself added that the song has a bit of a Nordic touch and Christer Björkman describes it as a classic Swedish ballad.

Maja Gullstrand, "Här För Mig Själv" (Thomas G:son/Marcos Ubeda)
Despite Maja doing a sort of music I don't usually think of as typical Melodifestival fare--sort of brassy, kind of bossa nova-y stuff--she's sung a song that just missed making it into a past Melodifestival before ("Alla Dessa Ord," if I'm remembering correctly), so I guess seeing her in the festival isn't that much of a surprise. Plus, she was on Fame Factory, which means she's practically obligated to appear in Melodifestivalen at some point given past history. "Här För Mig Själv" is described as a groovy, trendy neo-retro bossa nova (maybe) dressed in big flowery yellow velour pajamas (that's the songwriters' description, really).

Next 3, "Esta Noche" (Michael Xavier Barraza/Jimmy Almgren/Adam Soliman)
Another group I've never heard of and could very well have been formed mainly for this purpose, Next 3 is made up of three young guys. Their song, "Esta Noche," is described as a fusion of R&B, hip-hop, and Caribbean rhythms as well as a mix of rap, reggaeton, and pop in Swedish and Spanish. Barraza says "Esta Noche" is a rap/hip-hop song with a schlager-seasoned chorus, but he's careful to add that the song is modern and with a Latin flavor, not influenced by ABBA.

Jonathan Fagerlund, "Welcome To My Life" (Samuel Waermö/Didrik Thott)
Aww, Jonathan! From the moment he was predicted to be in next year's Melodifestival, I've been wondering how fans of the contest will react to him--unless his music has changed some, it doesn't go for any sort of real electronically created sound, even though it's very much based on classic-style boy band melodies. The description of the song, "Welcome To My Life," certainly doesn't give us more information: it's a positive and happy pop track (Gylleneskor found out through an interview with Jonathan that the lyrics are somewhat biographical). Oh well, at least that should mean it won't be a ballad--there are a few too many fairly nondescript ones on his debut album, released this summer, for my taste, but that's made up for by songs like "Playing Me" and "Dance In The Shadows" that are just the sort of thing I love. Is he ready as a performer, though? I've got no idea. There's a very good chance I'll end up liking the song, though. In good news, he'll be releasing an album in tandem with his competition in Melodifestivalen, and he says it's got fewer ballads and the tempo has been sped up in general. He describes it, too, as happy and pop.

Rigo & the Topaz Sound feat. Red Fox, "I Got U" (Rodrigo Pencheff/Tobias Karlsson)
"I Got U" is described as a pleasant song inspired by the style of the '50's and '60's with a Caribbean touch. The Caribbean touch is unsurprising given that it's Rigo (and Topaz Sound) singing the song, though I guess I kind of think of his music as having a little bit of a light hip-hop touch--the floaty kind--though maybe that's just his styling and delivery on some of them if I'm really thinking about it.

In general news, a song not yet techincally assigned a singer has been renamed. "Människobarn" is reported by Schlagerprofilerna to have been retitled "Du är älskad där du går."


Dmitriy said...

I'm not so enthusiastic about Molly's song now after word "classic" in description, that's enough of classic that everyone was blame Sweden last year (Ljunggren+Forsman - another clone of For Att Du Finns, Empty Room, Jag Saknar Dig Ibland, Visst Finns Mirakel ???), no, please, I want Molly to blast contest with something fresh and breathtaking. Sonya sounded incredibly beautiful in 2007, but these year ballads sounded too much similar to it IMHO. I'm one of the biggest fans of "Hero" but let's stop sending anything "classic" if Europe doesn't appreciate.
That's why I'm not enthusiastic about Mons either, I'm sure I'll be in love with his song, but if Charlotte with loads of charisma and stunning vocal was so low with Kempe's greatest disco-song ever, so what to expect from Mons singing maybe greater Kempe's but still Kempe's disco-song...
However I think Molly will fight for victory, I'm not sure that other 6 artists will be in final.
Rikfors is too old (though he's popular and can be second Sjogren) and both with H.E.A.T. it's too old style.
Maja and Rigo are too original for shlagerfest.
Next3 and Jonathan are too unexperienced in live vocal.
Though we had Frida and Sjogren in final last year and it shows that we can't be totally sure in anything if we speak about chances on MF :)

Dmitriy said...

It was Damian actually, God, I'm writing too much about MF)))

Poster Girl said...

No, no, no, there's no such thing as writing too much about MF! :D I do absolutely know what you mean, though--the whole "where do we go from here" debate for Sweden is one I can't answer. Part of me thinks, though, that if there are so many Kempe songs in this year's final after Charlotte's song not doing so well at Eurovision last year, he must have found something different or innovative to do or reworked his style or something--I mean, would the panel choose that many songs when they saw how the last Kempe disco song did? Maybe they did, but I'm hoping they found something fresh in what he submitted.

In general, I think you're right about most of this group's odds of moving on.

The American ballad description has really thrown me off in regards to Molly's ballad--that's not a phrase I associate with positive things at all.

Rick said...

This sounds like a very boring heat. I am especially keen to see of 2 of the 3 members of "Next 3" remove some clothing. The middle one in the picture is, in the words of Borat "not so much".

PPG, I just wanted to check you were OK. I imagine you passed out when you realised that Darin has not made it to a semi-final yet. That bump on your head from when you fainted should go down soon.

Poster Girl said...

These people will all be in different heats, I think--one journalist said something along the lines of "the largest group of seventh and eighth place finishers" they'd ever seen, or something like that, I think I remember reading.

The good news is that I've revived, though I may possibly pass out again at the news that we can listen to the whole album! The bad news is that I'm still an awful commenter, especially in regards to that French songs post of yours I meant to say so much about (forever ago).

Anonymous said...

where was molly's song described as an american ballad?

Poster Girl said...

Anonymous, that was my mistake--I'm SO sorry, it should have said "Swedish," as it did in the post itself. I have no idea where I got that into my head--and Swedish ballads can sometimes be good things.