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Estonia: Koit Toome & Laura – Verona

The one season's most anticipated national finals is over, and in a super-final featuring Koit Toome & Laura, Kerli and Rasmus Rändvee, Koit & Laura eventually won on the televote. Koit & Laura's song, Verona, will compete in the second half of semi-final 2. A few weeks ago Estonia were floating around 20/1 on the expectation that Kerli would win Eesti Laul. Since her semi-final performance, Estonia's price drifted out to 70s. The market has become very wise to Estonian hype, with them being backed into a false short-price in 2015 and 2011. The same hasn't happened this year, despite another fan…
Song Appeal
Vocal Strength
Staging Potential
Likely Televote Appeal
Likely Jury Appeal
Cohesiveness of Package

Lossed

If they want to send an 80s Kylie and Jason throwback to Eurovision, fine. Just stop trying to cover it up with cheesy, over-choreographed staging

User Rating: 2.96 ( 40 votes)

The one season’s most anticipated national finals is over, and in a super-final featuring Koit Toome & Laura, Kerli and Rasmus Rändvee, Koit & Laura eventually won on the televote.

Koit & Laura’s song, Verona, will compete in the second half of semi-final 2.

A few weeks ago Estonia were floating around 20/1 on the expectation that Kerli would win Eesti Laul. Since her semi-final performance, Estonia’s price drifted out to 70s. The market has become very wise to Estonian hype, with them being backed into a false short-price in 2015 and 2011. The same hasn’t happened this year, despite another fan favourite, Verona, taking the crown.

Verona it a fantastically well written song with multiple interlinked hooks that repeat throughout the song: “before the romance turned to drama”, “we are lost…”, and then “our Verona.” I don’t tend to listen to lyrics, but this song has imprinted itself on my soul. It is extremely catchy, which is a shame because the staging sucks.

Laura just doesn’t have the charisma or stage presence to open this song, or act out the hackneyed choreography they’re attempting. Then comes Koit’s face projected on to a wall like Malta last year. The tanned lothario appears and Laura does her finest embarrassed school girl smile to camera. It really is vomit inducing. The back-to-back segment is confusing too. As a viewer, I have absolutely no idea what is going on – and neither does Laura, bless her.

If they want to send an 80s Kylie and Jason throwback to Eurovision, fine. Just stop trying to cover it up with cheesy, over-choreographed staging that viewers will deride. Georgia tried and failed in 2013. Personally, I would take a more literal approach and try to recreate the Verona balcony with Romeo Koit trying to woo Juliet Laura from down below. That sounds a bit dirty, but you get my drift. The balcony lowers during the song and they eventually come together for the climax (another unfortunate choice of words).

Either way, without a major overhaul, Estonia will lose out to slicker performances. In current form it’s qualifying in 8th and finishing 17th-22nd in the final.

Can Estonia challenge for a high placing in Kyiv?

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16 comments

  1. This is going to be the new Poland 2016 of 2017, really high tellevoting and really low on juries. Oh and this isnt the most anticipated national final Sweeden is.

    Moreover, I think the songs winning odds should go close to 100s, because it wont do well with juries.

    • Gav was very much correct.Seasoned gamblers were very interested in how this played out as well as Sweden.How the super final worked is hugely important for next years betting because for the first time in many years we had a pointer to if the Estonian public would stick to their conservative voting.(Kerli v Laura).

  2. Im so very very happy for Laura and also thank the layers pushing her out to 6+ during the jury scores as most shrewdies were busy with MF.She only needed a four to reach the super final,once she scored above that it was pretty much game over.Those layers need to learn how ELs work.
    Verona needs a bit of polishing with the staging and also the backing vocals,but there is plenty to work with.One of this years entries with potential,and the lovely fact EL tactics remain intact.

  3. It’s very promising at the beginning but then goes a little stale after. Should qualify and qualify comfortably when you consider the averagness of semi 2 so far but one again a average result in the final. Each really need a song to challenge Italy at the top otherwise this will be the worst ESC in living memory.

  4. Catriona colville

    Excellent choice by Estonia. Will probably be slightly over-marked by the fans, but I can see this doing very well in May. In a year of such poor quality, this is for sure top 10 and possible top 5 if they can improve the staging and sort out Laura’s vocals.

  5. Knew Kerli was beatable in the superfinal despite the blatant favouritism, just figured Elina would be the one to do it. Semi 2 is so far one of the weakest semis I can remember and I think this is good enough to qualify from the second half. Vocally this is very good and whilst the song isn’t that good, it’s different enough from the other ballads to do fairly well. It’s somewhere in between quite classy and unbelievably cheesy so could do OK with both juries and public. I do think it’s a fairly certain qualifier and I expect it maybe finishes in higher mid table, around 10th – 15th

  6. Alright, so if they’re ever going to get a bold entry over the line for Estonia, they’ve got to have one and only one and pimp it more blatantly than a Dansk Melodi Grand Prix on acid.

    I’m a little surprised and disappointed by the result, I never warmed to the song. It doesn’t really go anywhere and I do have an irksome love-hate relationship with Laura’s vocal ability, but that’s exasperated by stacking her up against the vocally superior Koit.

    I hope Kerli will have another go in the future, but Koit & Laura are only going to make things easier still for Italy at the moment.

    • Kerli was no threat to Italy Ben,or the top places,so the Estonian result doesn’t affect the outright at all.If they want to change things they would need a jury vote in the super final,or scrap it anyway.The Estonian public probably wouldnt take kindly to that.Their televote winners will hardly ever match the jury choices and ERR are mostly interested in keeping their viewers happy.
      Laura has also been very ill the last few weeks and her vocal is better than that usually,though i do agree Koit is the stronger vocalist and his appeal will of helped get Laura over the line.

  7. I’m happy with this winner and if it’s performed well, I think it should be possible to reach the bottom half of the Top 10, maybe something like Belgium last year.

  8. First time listening it tonight and I kind of like it a lot. Sounds dated but so dated that it’s actually really cool. Sounds like a good quality ballad from 80ies. Lovely

  9. Loreen out! But Fanboys extract immediate revenge with Verona win!!

    I suspect not everyone will be pleased with this outcome, but as Gav mentioned when reviewing the audio versions, Kerli’s song did not make the strongest first impression. It was the staging potential that made Spirit Animal a big hope to do well at Eurovision. Sadly this potential was never entirely fulfilled. The staging might have worked well at a Kerli concert but not as a Eurovision entry, where most of those voting are seeing the song as transmitted down the lens of a TV camera. Kerli simply did not make enough intimate eye contact with the camera. Where she did it was lost because of her thick eye make-up.

    Contrast this to Koit and Laura whose staging was almost video quality and lifted a rather dated song to a whole new level. The coy glances to camera by the non-singer were an absolute masterpiece and the whole thing looked so classically elegant. In my book the semi-final staging (and Laura’s dress) was almost perfection apart from maybe the last 30 seconds. The improvements made tonight lost some the video feel and for me were not really improvements.

    I thought both Koit and Laura were vocally strong. I don’t get the criticisms of Laura’s vocal at all. If you want to know what ‘off-tune’ sounds like I would refer you to live performances of Requiem by Alma. (Caveat – I am tone deaf so I may not be the most reliable judge in this respect!)

    The dated feel of Verona will to some extent hold it back with the juries, but the song is good, the performers are strong and the staging is close to excellent.

    In a year where the left hand side of the board is not exactly crowded with candidates it’s got to be top 10.

  10. Turns out they won the first round of televoting as well, and by a significant margin, so it’s not just a simple case of “safe choice overcoming left-field choice in superfinal”: https://eurovoix.com/2017/03/05/estonia-koit-toome-laura-beat-kerli-20000-votes/

    • Im really pleased to see Laura won so easily.Lõhmus played a masterstroke by putting her with Koit.No doubt he was thinking of ways to get her over the finish line in an EL.Laura being hugely popular alongside a housewives favourite was televote gold.
      Ironic when she lost in Eurosong 07 the song in front of her was called Romeo and Juliet.
      Karl-Erik Taukar & Maarja-Liis Ilus for next year,maybe even together.

  11. Three and a half stars? Really? While I do recognise that the song has some, albeit small, merits, does such a bland, dated, dull number really deserve that score compared to other reviews you’ve given? It may stand out as it is a little different from other ballads and do somewhat decently because of that, but that’s purely a testament to how poor the quality is shaping up to be this year, not to the actual song itself being any good.

  12. This songs reminded me of Modern Talking.

  13. New version of Verona.

    It has lost a bit of energy for me. Down to their eventual staging concept, though.

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