Ukraine for the first time in a couple of months has lost its leading position in the bookmaker rating: who are our competitors?
Two countries that won the Eurovision Song Contest, Sweden and Finland, presented their performers. Ukraine in the bookmaker rating immediately fell from first place to third, and its chances of winning – from 18% to 13%. However, the new members are not as strong as they seem compared to our pop duo TVORCHI. Against us is Loreen Zineb Nora Talhaoui, aka Loreen, a 39-year-old Swedish singer of Moroccan-Berber origin who won Eurovision 2012. But her new composition Tattoo looks weaker than the winning hit Euphoria. After a long-time victory, Loreen’s career as a whole did not work out. Jere Pöyhönen, better known by his stage name Käärijä, is a Finnish rapper. And rap has never been honored at Eurovision.
Consider how much the chances of our artists winning have fallen?
Two strong countries presented their performers – Sweden and Finland. And immediately shifted Ukraine from first place to third.
Screenshot of betting odds for Eurovision 2023
Sweden is one of the Eurovision record holders, this country has won the contest six times. And Finland – once, but, perhaps, this was a very memorable victory for us by Finnish rockers in scary masks, because then – in 2007 – they were ahead of our Verka Serduchka, who took 2nd place.
Loreen: tattooed sex bomb
This year, Sweden is represented by the spectacular 39-year-old Moroccan-Berber singer Loreen Zineb Nora Talhaoui or simply Loreen, who won the Eurovision Song Contest 2012.
Of course, this is a charismatic performer, but for some reason, after that long-standing victory, her career in Sweden did not work out: the hit Euphoria, with a bright hook in the chorus, turned out to be the most popular. In fact, this participation in the competition is an attempt to reset the popularity.
Of the advantages of Loreen – she has a spectacular number. There are not many clothes on the singer, this emphasizes her sexy figure, loose hair. Loreen – barefoot, with huge fingernails, such a catwoman.
Above Loreen there is a canopy in the form of a square, which, as it were, presses down on her, but during the performance the square rises higher and higher and the artist gets more and more freedom.
The song is lyrical, about the difficulties of love: “It’s time to say goodbye. I will go through fire and water, because all I care about is love. But you are with me forever, like a tattoo.”
Loreen’s video got 1 million views in three days, which is pretty good.
Loreen — Tattoo, Eurovision 2023
Käärijä: dancing boxer
The second artist who pushed Ukraine forward is Ere Peuhenen, better known under the pseudonym Käärijä – Kyaarija.
Käärijä performs rap. And this time too, but with a dance bias. Finn shows off his beefy, naked torso in the room, wearing an acid green bolero.
On the stage, Kyaarija rushes about like an animal in a corral. Two couples in classic pink dance costumes dance the cha-cha-cha in front of him. Everything is very expressive, rhythmic, powerful, but rap is also rap in Africa. Therefore, the authors of the composition made the right move – it has a good dance chorus.
It’s not that the guy showed any super-vocal abilities, but Kyaariya somehow sings. And the chorus, although primitive, is in the catchy manner of dance artists of the 1990s, such as the German band Scooter or the Italian MO-DO (remember, from every corner it was heard: “Ai, zwei, policeman”).
Now the soloist sits down on the four dancers, then they pick him up and in the final solemnly lift him above them! It seems to be nothing new and even somewhat primitive, but it is done firmly and choreographically competently. And in the format of Eurovision, in our opinion, the Finn seems to be a more dangerous rival for the Ukrainians than the Swede: his video scored a well-deserved 2 million views.
Wrapper — Cha Cha Cha, Eurovision 2023
By the way, his track Cha Cha Cha in the form of a clip was also interestingly designed: Kyaariya is a boxer here, who regularly gets in the “scoreboard” – from himself in a white women’s wig. Such an existential conflict! Although simple, but the energy in places rolls over. Hot Finnish guy!
Despite the fact that before this track, Kyaarija had no particularly popular tracks on YouTube (tens of thousands of views). So, for him, this competition is a real chance to get to the top and the rapper will use it to the fullest.
Käärijä — Cha Cha Cha (Lyric Video), UMK23
TVORCHI: one steel heart for two
The main advantage of our pop duo TVORCHI is that they are something between the “complexity” of a Swede and the “simplicity” of a Finn.
TVORCHI is a pop group founded in 2018 by composer and arranger Andrey Gutsulyak and black vocalist Jeffrey Kenny.
Andrei was born in the village of Vilkhovets, the birthplace of Jeffrey Kenny – Nigeria. Both have pharmaceutical backgrounds. Their style is electronic funk. Kenny has a pleasant, enveloping voice, he writes English and Ukrainian texts, Gutsulyak composes interesting music – in line with world trends.
The guys have released four albums and several hits so far – they are young, but already experienced artists. In 2021, Andrey Gutsulyak and Jeffrey Kenny became the winners of the YUNA music award: they won the Best Pop Group, Best Album and Best Electronic Hit nominations.
Their track Heart Of Steel was written in May 2022 – under the impression of the struggle of the “Azov”. The idea that Ukrainians have a heart of steel, hardened by the trials of war. But the song is not directly about the war, but about people who find the strength in themselves to move forward, not to give up, and ultimately win.
At the beginning of the composition there is a “psychedelic” sound, which Andrey extracts from the synthesizer. It looks like an alarm. This is followed by a fairly intelligible verse, accompanied by powerful synth basses, as if the “buildup” continues and the shock chorus should have burst out. At this point, they had a “subsidence” in sound in the first version of the track. Now the guys, as if taking into account the recommendations of the Focus, have made it more powerful – you can feel the “kach”. And in the final they added drama with the help of violins.
Within 6 days, TVOTCHI’s video has gained 360 thousand views, which is still less than that of its rivals. Whether the “modernization” of the number is enough to win – the contest will show!
TVORCHI — Heart Of Steel (Eurovision Version)
We will return to the competition when all the participants are completed in order to analyze the entire musical palette and our chances.
Eurovision 2023 will take place in Liverpool (UK). Representatives from 31 countries will take part in the semi-finals. The two semi-finals will take place on May 9th and 11th, while the final of the competition is scheduled for May 13th.
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