As per usual, the Andra Chansen (or Second Chance Round) took place this past weekend in Karlstad to decide the final two spots that go to the final of this years competition. Tough competition and changes in the qualification meant that there was a shorter and more “normal” feeling and not so much of the duel feeling as in past years.

Karlstad.00.Gina Dirawi & Danny Saucedo

All eight songs performed, three were eliminated, and the remaining five were revoted, and the top four went into either duel-1, or duel-2 where their songs were performed again and televoted. Here are the results and my overall thoughts:

Duel 1: Behrang Miri – Jalla dansa sawa vs. Anton Ewald – Begging

Unsurprisingly the winner of this one was Anton Ewald, who’s dance number brought him to tears and a complete inability to talk in the after-show. It was very touching yet very unprofessional in the sense that he couldn’t literally put any words together apart from “yes.” I think that the song is decent, but there were better songs in this competition, like for instance Caroline af Ugglas who’s song still is haunting me, and Cookies N Beans who crashed their burning flags and their chance for the final.

Duel 2: Robin Stjerberg – You vs. Martin Rolinski – In and out of love

A really surprise duel that resulted in Robin qualifying and Martin being disappointed with his amazing disco song. I really think that this was a mistake over all and was a result (like the first duel) of teeny-popper voting for the Idol stars. I don’t really think that Robin’s song was strong, nor was his vocal performance or looks. Martin’s song was more polished, more interesting, and more professional in all respects and fully deserved to go to the final. Having said that, the huge favourite for the second chance round was none other than Erik Segerstedt & Tone Damli who failed to even qualify for the four spots. As shocking as it was, I’m very disappointed, and fear that the voting was really flopped.

Overall this means that the final will be a sausage fest, with only one artist being female and the majority of entrants being single-male-singers (with the exception of State of Drama and Ravaillacz). Although doubtful that Louise Hoffsten will come out on top, I really think that the results may be a surprise despite SVT’s obvious promotion of Ulrik Munther being the favourite.

In general I think that the the final selected two songs were the poor choices, and I think that Caroline af Ugglas and Erik Segerstedt & Tone Damli were the right choices. However, next week we will figure out who will represent Sweden in the Eurovision Song Contest 2013 at home in Malmö. Fingers crossed for Louise Hoffsten, Ulrik Munther, or Yohio.

For a lack of better expression: what the fuck happened tonight? I am at a complete loss for words at the result of the Second Chance round, and I fail to see what happened. Nearly in every case the song that I like didn’t progress, and now I’m stuck listening to the two songs that I precisely didn’t want to ever hear again.

Dynazty – Land of Broken Dreams
❗ Personal Favourite

Despite my dislike for rock music, the melodic rock really works for me. I do have to say that the execution of this particular performance was without a doubt sub-standard. The singing was off and strained at times, and sadly it didn’t result in the voter’s public appeal in comparison to Top Cats (which boggles my mind). Even if they had progressed, I’d have wished their demise against Timoteij.

Top Cats – Baby Doll
=> Globen

The first thing I said when watching this song again, was wow those ears are really big! And then it started, the lead singer began to look better and better looking. It’s a sad day for me, who at some point actually thought he and some of the others were attractive. I wrote about this song before and I’m offended on several levels, but I guess it could have been worse! (Or..?) What struck me also about this performance was the English diction got poorer since the last time.

Andreas Johnson – Lovelight

Dubbed as the feel-good-chorus of the competition (really?) I don’t think this one had a chance in hell. I like Andreas, but all of his music sounds the same and has the same feeling, and for that reason I wasn’t really rooting for him at all. I like his voice, I like his humour, and I like him, but in this competition at this moment I’m glad that he fell.

Timoteij – Stormande hav
❗ Personal Favourite

To say one is disappointed about this not qualifying would be an understatement for me. This was by and large the only song out of the Second Chance round that I felt strongly about. It’s catchy, it’s pretty, it’s simple, and it’s ethno-pop with a pin whistle! Everything I ask for in an entry! Having beaten Andreas in the first quarterfinal I was shocked and appalled to learn they lost their ticket to Globen to Top Cats? Votership must have been down and the retirees must have voted because I’m lost confused.

Thorsten Flinck & Revolutionsorkestern – Jag reser mig igen
=> Globen

Barefoot and minus a lot of makeup form the Semifinals, Thorsten strode his way into the final for reasons that i fail to grasp. The song is depressing, the whole ensemble just made me confused an to make matters worse at the Eftersnack, he couldn’t even get the name of the interviewer right.. He had to ask at least three times after hearing the name “Nisse” and then barely acknowledged it. Beating out Lotta and Christer was a shock, but I get the impression that he’s a lot more full of himself than I give him credit for.

Lotta Engberg & Christer Sjögren – Don’t let me down
❗ Personal Favourite

As cheesy as it is, I actually like this song and it grew on me (thanks to the usage of violins). With great voices and great careers they bowed out to Thorsten Flinck who quite frankly didn’t deserve it in my opinion. Although the song was a bit strange, I did notice that the English pronunciation was indeed sub-standard.

Sean Banan – Sean den Förste Banan
❗ Personal Favourite

Despite it being a complete comedy entry and something so strange to most people’s eyes the song is disturbingly catchy and it’s no wonder that it beat out Youngblood. I’m not happy at all that it failed in the semifinal to go to Globen because quite honestly the final needed something a little “lighter” to deal with the serious songs. If only the comedy act could do better every year..

Youngblood – Youngblood

Boybands are always a tough call, and most of what I wanted to say was noted in the semi-final analysis. This song is not really something that one can toe-tap to, and it’s just a group of “wet dream” teenage guys likely looking to get laid. They are typical 5 guys each with it’s own cardboard cut-out “images” (even one with the underdeveloped bulging muscles). I’m happy it didn’t go anywhere, and it’s safe to say that they can all go back to school where they belong!

In a desperate attempt to be lazy and regain my strength from busy working days, views from my bed upon waking up can be found in the below photograph.

IMG_20120226_082308

I spend as little energy as possible doing things on the weekend, and despite this low-energy stuff I still manage to go to the gym on the ever deserted Saturday and Sunday late-night shifts. I like when the gym is empty, as I can do my stuff and leave without anyone bothering me. But until then, I can only hibernate away under my duvet in an attempt to have enough energy to get up and watch Andra Chansen today.

With the highly anticipated matches of the second chance round, needless to say I was highly disappointed and shocked. Here’s why:

Sundsvall.00.01 ScoreboardQuarterfinal 1: Jenny Silver vs. Love Generation
Sundsvall.00.02 Jenny Silver & Love Generation

In by far the most contested battles of the evening, my favourite Jenny Silver lost out to Love Generation and not by much. Both songs are fantastic and it’s sad to see the classic ABBA influenced schlager go up against the dance-pop contestant. Either way I would be happy for them to go onto the final, but the road never ends up being as straightforward.

Quarterfinal 2: Loreen vs. Sara Varga
Sundsvall.00.03 Loreen & Sara Varga

Unsurprisingly Sara won this contest probably quite handily. Loreen’s song is good but it’s highly introverted that it’s almost awkward. Sara herself seems quite introverted and unsure of herself, but the song is a feel good favourite, and it’s no surprise that it beat out it’s competition.

Quarterfinal 3: The Moniker vs. Linda Pritchard
Sundsvall.00.04 The Moniker & Linda Pritchard

I am shocked beyond belief at the Swedish voting this evening. The absolutely epic ballad (no matter how better she sang before) still should have outplayed the corny happy-go-lucky song of The Moniker. I like both songs, but the power and versatility of Linda’s song puts goosebumps down my spine. Absolutely robbed in my opinion.

Quarterfinal 4: Shirley’s Angels vs. Pernilla Andersson
Sundsvall.00.05 Shirley's Angels & Pernilla Andersson

The raging homosexual in me cries out for this loss. The awesomely popular Shirley Clamp and her sexy ceorigoraphs were no match for Pernilla and her guitar. I like both the songs, but I feel like Shirley’s Angels fits Melodifestivalen a little bit more. Perhaps given the amount of English songs in the final, the Swedes needed to push something more Svensk through.

Semifinal 1: Love Generation vs. Sara Varga
Sundsvall.00.06 Love Generation & Sara Varga

This is the feel good favourite win of the year I think. The fact that Sara could fend off the popular dance song is amazing and I’m glad that the Swedish public was able to choose the better song. No matter how much it sounds like I prefer the latter, I absolutely love the former!

Semifinal 2: The Moniker vs. Pernilla Andersson
Sundsvall.00.07.The Moniker & Pernilla Andersson

As surprised as the rest of us, The Moniker becomes the second finalist tonight. It’s good, and seemingly popular, but if that’s the case, why didn’t it go directly through Globen instead of taking out the other good songs in the second chance round? :crazy:

So despite the phone number fiasco of the wrong numbers showing and SVT announcing that it didn’t affect the voting (right…! 8|), the results could have been worse. One good song gets through and likely will flop in the final for lack of excitement, and the other is okayish and will probably end up being in the top 5. Only one more week!

So rightfully so, I’ve been tapping my toes to the song La Voix since Saturday night. This song was written by Malena Ernman and Frederik Kempe (I’m really starting to want to call him Freddy, as we so celarly are on a first name basis!) And this song is fabulous. Before Slovenia’s entry a few years ago, Alenka Gotar, we didn’t think that opera and pop/disco could be mixed, but boy were we wrong. This song rocks my socks, and I just find myself belting everywhere I go.

Malmö.08-01.Malena ErnmanMalmö.08-02.Malena Ernman

Starting out in green and with sexy-salt-and-pepper older dancers, Malena busts out the theme of keeping a promise and being in love with us. What will she do next?

Malmö.08-03.Malena ErnmanMalmö.08-04.Malena Ernman

Well what else would SVT to besides avoid pyrotechnics, but use the abundance of light that is available. They make her look like an angel, and justly with the voice of one. And then she busts a move with the sexiest dancer on the stage, the 40-year old salt-and-pepper one who looks a bit like Pekka Heino (yes I know who he is, weird!)

Malmö.08-05.Malena ErnmanMalmö.08-06.Malena Ernman

Oh but wait, it gets better going back to pink from green and white, and then we’ve got the angel again belting out befoe the chorus! It’s eeirie but an awesome effect. I never would have thought that bringing the contrast so high woud make something look so cool.

Malmö.08-07.Malena ErnmanMalmö.08-08.Malena Ernman

Oh but wait, that’s not all before moving back to green we go to black, and with mysterious masks. I think it’s really nifty, and a nice simple little addition.

Malmö.00-01.Malena Ernman & Sarah Dawn FinerMalmö.00-02.Malena Ernman & Sarah Dawn Finer

Wow what a song. And what is even better about a disco-opera song is the fact that Sweden actaully voted for it! And also, beat out Sarah Dawn Finer, probably one of the most popular singers there. Notice the change in expressions on both of the singers faces in the following comparison.

Malmö.00-03.Malena Ernman & Sarah Dawn FinerMalmö.00-04.Malena Ernman

This picture is worth a thousand words. Sweden was shocked, and notice how amazingly shocked / happy the singers are. Sarah Dawn Finer becase she goes to Andra Chansen, gets the International Jury Vote, and clearly will make it through, and the success of Malena. After this Freddie (hah) came up for the kiss-and-hug, becasue he had two songs going against each other, both of which he wrote with the singers, so it was kind of awkward. I love it though!

So what did we learn today folks? Opera and Disco do mix, and they mix well when sung correctly! Now go and become a fan of Malena Ernman… !!

What else do we learn? The lyrics of course, found here:

Malena Ernman – La Voix
Can you keep a secret
Can you keep a secret
I’m in love with you
Can you make a promise
Can you make a promise
Stay forever true
Then I’m forever yours

Je t’aime, amour, quand j’entends la voix
Je t’aime, ma vie, c’est jamais sans toi
Je vis ma vie pour toi, c’est l’universe pour moi
Je t’aime, amour, quand j’entends la voix

Tell me what you’re feeling
Tell me what you’re feeling
I just wanna know
Tell me what you’re dreaming
Tell me what you’re dreaming
Let your feelings show
Stay and don’t let go

Je t’aime, amour, quand j’entends la voix
Je t’aime, ma vie, c’est jamais sans toi
Je vis ma vie pour toi, c’est l’universe pour moi
Je t’aime, amour, quand j’entends la voix

Je vis ma vie pour toi, c’est l’universe pour moi
Je t’aime, amour, quand j’entends la voix

J’entends la voix
La voix