Estonia are one of the next countries to choose their Eurovision entry, Eesti Laul has become one of the National Finals that we all look out for, more for the wide variety of genres on offer. In recent years though the quality of the songs has increased and we know see Estonia becoming more successful in the contest. Last year’s entry was a fantastic song, and performance, and I don’t fully understand why it done as bad as it did, but that is Eurovision.
Let’s have a look at this year’s finalist and see if Estonia has a shot at their second win.
Lenna Kuurmaa- “Slingshot”
This is a very atmospheric R’n’B song, and Lenna’s vocals are great on the studio version of the song. She can also sell this live as we have seen in the Semi Final. She is used to a big stage as she previously represented Switzerland in 2005 with the band Vanilla Ninja and “Cool Vibes”. I love the bridge on this song and the accompanied dancing. It is a bit cheesy in regards to the lyrics, but I enjoy the performance and I can understand why it qualified for the final. I don’t think it is a winner, but it is a great entry.
My score: 7/10
Elina Born- “In or Out”
Elina is back for another shot at the Eurovision trophy. Having won Eesti Laul with Stig Rasta in 2015, she has gone solo with this ‘banger’. Although what can’t be denied is that Stig is very much still in the picture. This is co-written by Stig himself and you can tell by the vintage sound and the deep meaning to the lyrics. I really enjoy this, it has elements of Caro Emerald and Caravan Palace, but Elina’s voice is so distinctive that you could not mistake her for anyone else. One big question is, will Estonia go for another Stig Rasta composition after last year’s shocking result in Stockholm?
My score: 8/10
Ivo Linna- “Suur Loterii”
It is the Estonian Tony Christie, I love Ivo’s voice, it is a mature voice and of course that comes from years of performing. Estonia’s national selection must have one of the highest percentages of returning Eurovision participants of any National final this season. I loved Ivo’s 1996 entry “Kaelakee Haal”, and this one is great too. It harks back to show bands of the late 60’s and 70’s, and he is a well-deserved finalist. I think it will be a similar result to Hasse in Sweden 2015, televoters will vote in their droves for Ivo but the jury vote will kill his chances. Not a winner, but a great nostalgic entry.
My score: 7/10
Karl-Kristjan & Whogaux feat. Maian- “Have You Now”
Oh, this instantly reminds me of travelling up the Coast of California with the window down and the radio on, The Chainsmokers were constantly on the radio, and this gives me a bit of their vibe. I love a song that can transport me back to a moment in my life and give me the emotions I experienced, so kudos for that. What I must say is I don’t enjoy the electronic elements, it adds nothing to the song, and in a way, makes it sound a bit cheap. It is a decent effort, but needs some changes.
My score: 6.5/10
Ariadne- “Feel Me Now”
Very mystical, quite like Ellie Goulding vocally with that fragile female voice. It is a dreamy electronic sound that gives me vibes of Getter Jaani from 2011 crossed with La Roux of “Bulletproof” fame. Ariadne stands quite still in her Semi-Final performance which doesn’t help the song, I hope it is less static come the final as this is a good entry and has the potential to do well. It is well produced and is very contemporary. Estonia could pick worse.
My score: 7.5/10
Koit Toome & Laura- “Verona”
One word: EPIC!! This song is possibly the best I have heard so far from any National final all season. This is an atmospheric, mid-tempo ballad, it could be the soundtrack to a Dystopian film based in Italy. They can both sing, and this has been proven as both have went to Eurovision for Estonia, 1998 & 2005 respectively. Laura even came second in last year’s Eesti Laul with “Supersonic”. This is better than either of their previous Eurovision songs, and this would be a big contender in Kyiv.
My score: 9/10
Kerli- “Spirit Animal”
This is very experimental, which must be commended as it does take a brave person to bring a song like this to any contest. I can’t say this is a good or bad song, as there really isn’t anything to compare it too. I am captivated by Kerli’s vocals and it does have a subtle hook which makes the song memorable. I must say the Semi-Final performance was completely disjointed and that would need to be looked at. If Estonia want to go completely left field, this could be a good way to go. Latvia done it in 2015 and that got them into the top 10 for the first time in 6 years.
My score: 7/10
Daniel Levi- “All I Need”
This has a very Shawn Mendes/Justin Beiber influence. I never enjoy this music, it always sounds like a song that never actually takes off structurally and leaves me wanting so much more from it. Daniel is a good singer, and I know the song is contemporary, so I am sure it would pick up a lot of points from younger viewers, but it wouldn’t be my winner.
My score: 5/10
Liis Lemsalu- “Keep Running”
Liis sounds exactly like the studio version, the sign of a fantastic vocalist. The song has a good beat, yet instead of gradually building it is plodding along, getting bursts of life in the chorus before falling back into its comfort zone in the verses. Liis can perform this song fabulously, and while I would dance along to this, it wouldn’t give Estonia their second win.
My score: 6.5/10
Rasmus Randvee- “This Love”
This reminds me of a Kaiser chiefs song, it has those heavy drum beats throughout and a strong male lead vocal. The camera work in the Semi Final would have given you motion sickness. This is an indie-rock song, but it isn’t the best example of the genre. It could do well with viewers, but I can’t see this going to Kyiv.
My score: 6/10
Well Estonia hasn’t disappointed this year, they have put together a fantastic variety of songs, and there are a few songs that could see them back in the top 10 this year. I must give a shout out to Koit Toome and Laura, their song is a fantastic song and it could win Eurovision 2017, it has a winning quality.
My top 3:
1. Koit Toome & Laura- “Verona”
2. Elina Born- “In or Out”
3. Ariadne- “Feel Me Now”
Who is your favourite? Let us know below! Enjoy the show.