The second heat of Norway’s Eurovision pre-selections took place last night. NRK crammed quite a lot of the contest’s good songs into this particular heat, so in the end it was quite tough to call if we were pleased with the result or not. On the one hand, our two favourite songs of the night didn’t make it to the final. But on the other, the three songs that did get enough votes to progress to the final, were all genuinely great. Overall it was a good line-up of quality pop – a fact which was echoed the day before when popjustice.com even gave the eight songs a write-up. A first for Norway’s Melodi Grand Prix.
As for the end result, well let’s start with our two favourites from the night – two songs that unfortunately didn’t make the final.
Rikke Lie’s ‘Another Heartache’ was the top ballad of the evening, and so the stage was set for her to have the stand-out performance of the night too. She did this by starting off on the piano, before being accompanied by EIGHT violinists. Not your standard stand-around violinists though – these boys had choreography to incorporate, offering the performance something quite different. Rikke left the piano for the last part of the song and joined her dancers centre stage to belt out that final chorus. We still can’t quite believe that it wasn’t enough to get her in the final.
Minnie Oh’s ‘You And I’ is a fantastic electropop track, with its emphasis on the pop side of things. The production it was given on stage was bigger than most yesterday evening. At times attempting to look like a tribal 80’s techno rave, and in moments just looking like a big old hot mess. We loved it, of course. But Minnie definitely suffered from being put in the same heat as two other quite similar electropop songs, also fronted by girls. In the end it was likely that if any of the three did manage to make it to the final, it would be Malin’s ‘Crush’ – a performance and a package that was probably a lot more palatable for the standard Melodi Grand Prix voter at home, than Minnie’s was.
Rikke Lie: ‘Another Heartache’
Minnie Oh: ‘You And I’
And now for the three songs that DID make it to the final.
First up the aforementioned Malin and ‘Crush’. A 16 year old girl singing an adorably sweet “my heart goes 1,2,3…HELLO” refrain. We were always going to love it, but we weren’t sure if the voters would. We’re glad they did though – we’re looking forward to seeing her give it another shot in the final, hopefully with more confident vocals this time.
Tommy Fredvang’s ‘Make It Better’ is the opposite to Malin’s ‘Crush’, in that it’s the type of song we suspected the voters would like, but weren’t sure if we would (before hearing it for the first time a couple of weeks back). We do like it though, a lot. Uplifting, melodious pop rock. And he’s so bloody gorgeous too! We’re quite enjoying this photo of him in particular.
Plumbo’s ‘Ola Nordmann’ has been doing well on Norwegian iTunes since its release two weeks ago, and it’s the song many predicted would go to the final, and are now predicting will win the whole thing. It’s gin-soaked, old man, folk rock. But somehow, for some reason, we really enjoy it. As we said on here before though, it’s really just Timoteij at the other end of the age and gender spectrum – so it’s inevitable we’re gonna pick up on it.
Tommy Fredvang: ‘Make It Better’
Plumbo: ‘Ola Nordmann’
As for the three also-rans – well they’re also worth a look if you’ve got the time. In particular Rikke Normann’s ‘Shapeshifter’ – the third in that trinity of electropop songs we mentioned earlier. We loved the song, loved the dancers, love her!
Rikke Normann: ‘Shapeshifter’
Cocktail Slippers: ‘Keeps On Dancing’
Isabel Ødegrd: ‘I’ve Got You’
Norway you truly spoiled us last night!
The third and final heat will take place next week, with the grand final the following week. Click here for a catch up of last week’s Heat 1 result.