Icelandic broadcaster, RUV, has released this year’s hopefuls vying to represent the nation in Kiev and hopefully make a return to the Grand Final for the first time since 2014.
The songs can be listened to here and all of them have both Icelandic and English versions.
Hildur – Bammbaramm Erna Mist Pétursdóttir – I’ll be gone
- Arnar Jónsson & Rakel Pálsdóttir – Again
Júlí Heiðar Halldórsson & Þórdís Birna Borgarsdóttir – Get Back Home
- Rúnar Eff – Make your way back home
- Aron Hannes – Tonight
- Aron Brink – Hypnotised
- Daði Freyr Pétursson – Is This Love?
- Svala Björgvinsdóttir – Paper
- Páll Rósinkranz & Kristina Bærendsen – You and I
- Linda Hartmanns – Ástfangin
- Sólveig Ásgeirsdóttir – Trust in me
First things first, I don’t think we’ll be heading to Reykjavik in 2018. Even so, there are some nicely produced songs in the lineup that show positive signs for Iceland going forward.
Hildur’s Bammbaramm and Svala’s Paper corner the sophisticated, down tempo, electronic vibe and both are perfectly good background tracks, rather than memorable Eurovision entries. Slightly higher in tempo, Aron Hannes delivers some authentic scandie pop. The verses are a little weak, but the pre-chorus and main refrain are strong – as is the middle eight and close. Aron’s profile doesn’t seem to match with this genre, so I’ll be keen to see how he delivers this live.
Júlí & Þórdís have a sort of Maria Olafs vibe going on, albeit with more song and less repetition. It’s the English version of Belarus’ song and if there’s good chemistry, this could be in the mix for Kiev.
Rúnar’s Make Your Way Back Home takes a bit too long to get going, but is credible, radio friendly and may also be in the mix.
I’ll Be Gone is one the stronger of the slowies, yet I feel Erna’s song would be at risk in a Eurovision semi-final up against stronger ballads. However, it does build to a strong finish and could be in contention. However, Arnar & Kristina’s You & I perhaps offers more of a moment than Erna’s solo.
Based on the studio versions, I’ll go for a top 3 of Júlí & Þórdís, Aron Hannes & Arnar & Kristina.
Who’s your favourite from the 12 semi-finalists?