Heading north-east to Växjö now where we have one big, surefire name and several others vying to make it to the Stockholm final. Five of the songs are upbeat with Owe and Anton sending ballads.
Heat 3: Växjö – February 18th
1. Robin Bengtsson – I Can’t Go On
Melfest 2013 winner, Robin Stjernberg, returns as writer along with Undo writers, David Kreuger, Hamed ”K-One” Pirouzpanah. Robin really should be vying for the second qualification spot alongside The Fooo, however, there is potential for an upset considering the vast bulk of votes are expected to go to the boyband and that Robin has been given the first slot. His high profile should still allow him to qualify if the song is strong enough.
2. Krista Siegfrids – Snurra min jord
Krista will be hoping to progress to the latter stages this time after a disappointing 5th place last year with Faller, but I fear the dreaded coffin slot will see her struggle again. Krista has a budding solo career in progress and exposure to the lucrative Swedish market appears to be the main plan. Gabriel Alares remains in place as writer, so a big step forward is required.
3. Anton Hagman – Kiss You Goodbye
Anton might be an unknown to most folk in the same way that Anton Ewald was in 2014. Unlike Ewald, he won’t be performing a dance floor banger with A Friend In London frontman, Tim Schou, on the writing team. It’s unfortunate he’s been placed in the same heat as The Fooo and Bengtsson, as there’s good potential here judging by his series of YouTube covers. This is probably a career launch opportunity with the most likely route to the final being via andra chansen, but going after Bengtsson does aid his chances of direkt.
4. Jasmine Kara – Gravity
Jasmine gets the second Anderz Wrethov song (Alice Svensson has the other). The 28-year old rose to fame on the back of Allsång på Skansen and Körslaget appearances, but has struggled since despite concerted efforts to promote her. In 2014, she took part in the Swedish version of Strictly Come Dancing and was the fifth celeb to be voted off. Benjamin Ingrosso won that season! I think we have a likeability problem here, so it would be a huge surprise to see Jasmine making the final. Her more recent work and image doesn’t scream voteable.
5. Owe Thörnqvist – Boogieman Blues
The older artists haven’t done as well of late and the self-penned Boogieman Blues might struggle to stand out against the likes of The Fooo, Bengtsson and Hagman. Owe does go into the Contest as the oldest ever, and while direkt qualification should be out of reach, if the narrative gains traction he could nab an andra chanson place.
6. Bella & Filippa – Crucified
A potential thorn in Owe’s side could be country duo Bella and Filippa. They’re a bit like two Anna Bergendhals, but given the Swedish appreciation of Country music, this duo shouldn’t be totally be ruled out. The writing team aren’t as well known as others, though Peter Hägerås has Eurovision national final experience, in addition to credits with Perrelli and erm… Paul Potts. Bella & Filippa aren’t high on my list, but I wouldn’t oppose them either. They’re a bit of an unknown.
7. The Fooo Conspiracy – Gotta Thing
The Fooo are the biggest name in the line up in terms of current popularity – they could totally romp the televote Yohio style, but if their song lacks a big enough hook, a Robin Stjernberg situation might arise. [New readers see Melfest 2013]
The lads are decent live and have two solid song writers: Nilsson wrote Darin’s Nobody Knows, which featured in the Eurovision 2013 semi-final interval. On top of that, he’s written for Agnes, Lindgren, as well as a rather fantastic song for Ulrik Munther which deserved much greater chart success. Robert ”Mutt” Lange is much rockier in style, but boasts bigger names such as Foreigner, Bryan Adams, Shania Twain, The Corrs, Nickelback, Maroon 5 and Muse, to name just a few. Most of those credits were for production, so hopefully that’s where his talents have been put to use.
The Fooo are the obvious qualifiers here, but with at least three names challenging for the second qualification spot, it’s unclear who will be joining them in the final. We’ll hopefully have some solid gossip ready for our preview podcast with Aftonbladet’s Tobbe Ek later this month.
Who do you think will join The Fooo in the final?