LITHUANIA: Live blog of Pabandom iš naujo! Heat 2 from 20.00CET
Our friends in Lithuania are choosing their song for Rotterdam apace. Tonight is heat two of Pabandom iš naujo! (We go again!). Twelve acts are up for six spots in the semi-finals that start on 1 February. Will one of tonight’s songs win that trip to the Netherlands in May? A 50/50 mixture of jury and public voting will pick the six who’ll progress.
We’re blogging tonight’s show with our thoughts on what’s hot and what’s not. Tell us if you agree. You can watch the action unfold HERE.
And we’re off. Twelve go in, six come out. Gabriele and Giedrius take us through proceedings. Don’t they look sweet?
We get introduced to the jury of the wise. Viktorus Diawara (LT 2001) and Aiste (LT 99) are two notable inclusions.
More chatter follows, explaining how the discerning Lithuanian can vote tonight.
Anyway, onto the songs…
Rūta Loop – We came from the sun
We get a slow song to kick off. Ruta is striking in make-up that makes her eyes very narrow, and a striking bob. She’s giving us sultry. There’s a beat to this that draws you in. During the song four dancers join her to cavort around the stage. I like the slightly industrial 80s sound – a tad Tubeway Army that accompanies it.
Soliaris – Breath
More atmospheric staging. Soliaris is stage left, with a gold-sprayed dancer taking centre. The sound is a tad R&B for beginners. It contrasts with Soliaris’s look, which is more librarian than gangsta. Sadly, I’m not sure whether this really goes anywhere. The dancer is the gimmick and steals the show.
Kristina Jure – My sound of silence
More dark staging. Kristina is alone in a dark dress and a mike on a stand. Maybe not much movement then. This could – just could – be a Melodifestivalen ballad. It’s actually quite classy. It builds well and the lack of movement is a good thing. Her English is pretty good and Kristina is pitch perfect. There’s even a key change! Best thing so far by a country mile.
Alen Chicco – Somewhere out there
Now this is striking with a capital ‘STRIK’. Alen has a distinctive alien look, but with an armour-clad left hand. And black chaps. Alen also has four backing singers in long dark robes. His song is slow and precise and moody. And might just divide opinion. It’s art, I’ll grant him that. But maybe just a bit too scary.
Indraya – You and I
Something a tad more upbeat and, dare I say, contemporary now. Indraya sounds like she knows what she’s doing. Her song bounces along very nicely from very early on. It may be a bit formulaic, but this should qualify for the semi-finals at a canter. It might even go further.
Germanas Skoris – Chemistry (breaking free)
We get something more funky now. Germanas has a guitar but doesn’t play it much. He leaves thst to his band. The chorus features some heavy falsetto, but ti’s not clear whether it’s Germanas or someone else. I find it a little off-putting. Fair play to him for trying something more ‘heavy metal’. Not quite my thing though.
Ad break time now. A file starring Jamie Foxxas. Things in Kaunas. Orchestras. Basketball. Opera. I was expecting cleaning products or Hamiltonas Travel. But it’s not to be.
Viktorija Miškūnaitė – The ocean
Viktorija is into opera. And very big dresses. OK, maybe more popera. I could imagine this in an advert for something uplifting, fir that is what the song is, even if it is popera. We know it can divide opinion. Is it a qualifier? I would think borderline at best. And that’s despite her fine voice.
Antturi – I gotta do
Ooh, Anturri is channelling his inner Benjamin Ingrosso with the beat and backdrop. It’s a mixture of singing styles. We get chanting and ooh-ooh-ooh, and the skill of cramming lots of words into a song Sasha Son style. Put together and it’s very mixed up and disjointed. I don’t think it’s a qualifier.
Abrokenleg – Electric boy
You want quirky? Well our girl gives that to you. It’s a modern take on a pierrot look. Her song is very Lene Lovich perhaps. There’s much drumming during the short chorus. There is something about this because it’s different – I can’t find a better word than quirky. She obviously likes her electric boy. A qualifier? I’ve no idea.
Twosome – Playa
A break from soloists with a trio. Yep, a trio. Hilarious. Actually, it’s not bad. The two singers have a very catchy song. Annoyingly catchy. It’s about being Lithuanian and a basketball player (playa, geddit). The lyric is simple and will strike a chord. Just think LT United or Inculto and you’re about there. The clumsy violinist in a yellow suit and the illuminated suits are the finishing touch.
Monique – Make me human
Back to ballad. Monique tries some robotic moves in her staging, whilst wearing a pale jumpsuit. It’s very downbeat and unfortunately doesn’t really go anywhere. She tries hard though.
Voldemars Petersons – Wings of freedom
Finally, Voldemars – another soloist – gives us another slower song. His look is interesting, almost like a trendy protestant minister. The song relies heavily on a guitar backing track. It could be another Melodifestivalen lower order song. As it could be here.
We’re nearly there. The jury has had its say during the course of the night, and they’ve all been very earnest in their dissection of the songs.
Voting has ended and we have six semi-finalists out there.
We have some scores in…
These are converted to the 12, 10, 8 system we know and love. This, somehow, gives us this…
So the top six there appear to have made it through. Are you surprised?
Thanks for tuning in. And tell us what you think of the result.
Author: John Stanton
Source: Eurovision Ireland