Welcome to the review of the second semi-final of “Eesti Laul 2020“. The review of the first semi-final of “Eesti Laul 2020” can be found here.
I will start by saying that for me, semi-final 2 is stronger than semi-final 1. Therefore, there are high chances that the winner of “Eesti Laul 2020” will come from semi-final 2.
#1. German & Violina – Heart Winder
German in an Estonian singer. Violina is a girl trio consists of Johanna Marie Kork, Daana Ots and Käll Kruusmägi. The trio performing on electric violins. The band was formed in 2008, by its members.
Vilolina participated in “Eesti Laul 2012” when they performed together with Birgit Õigemeel the song “You’re Not Alone” that ended in 7th place in the final.
In “Eesti Laul 2020”, German will perform together with Violina the song “Heart Winder”:
The song is opened with a triple violin playing. After that, the song has elements of Country music and the playing is namely based on guitars. The melody reminds a little bit of the songs “Rather Be” by Clean Bandit and “If I Can’t Have You” by Shawn Mendes. The chorus has more rhythm and therefore it’s more catchy than the verses. Violina trio upgrades a lot the final outcome. At a specific point, the song starts to be a little repetitive. A disadvantage of the song may be the singer’s voice which is sometimes weak. The violins night have a great positive impact on the chances of the songs to qualify for the final.
#2. INGER – Only Dream
Inger Fridolin is a young Estonian singer. She started her career thanks to covers she has sung and posted on YouTube. The singer participated in “Eesti Laul 2019“. Then she performed the song “Coming Home” which lead her to end in 6th place in the final:
In 2020, she will compete once again in the national final with the song “Only Dream”:
The song begins with hissing and guitar playing. It’s a basic Country ballad that is predictable. It’s from the kind of songs that we used to hear a lot of times. Inger’s voice is controversial and dominant like in all of her other songs. The song has parts where the singer has difficulties to hit the right note or her vocal range doesn’t fit to. Generally, something is missing in the song.
#3. Jaagup Tuisk – Beautiful Lie
Jaagup Tuisk is 18 years old singer and actor. He plays piano, guitar, drums, and trombone. He has participated in several competitions, including television competitions. In 2010 he participated in “Eesti Talent“. In 2018, he took part in “Eesti otsib superstaari” (“Estonia Idol”/ “Estonia Seeks Superstar”) and ended in 5th place.
Jaagup will perform the song “Beautiful Lie“:
The song starts with the singer’s voice together with some backing vocalists and without any melody. Thereafter, dramatic piano playing enters the song that becomes softer towards the end of the chorus. The interpretation is emotional and gentle with a flint voice. The song lives between the world of a personal ballad to a love song. The song talks about how the writer with his current relationship should be and continue. However, he understands that it will be fake and nothing more than a lie. The singer has excellent vocal abilities. It’s one of the few songs in “Eesti Laul 2020” that has the foundations of a winner. I would be happy to see staging that’s similar to the video clip. It could be a potential winner in “Eesti Lau 2020″
#4. Janet – Hingelind (Eng: Soul Bird)
Janet Vavilov will sing “Hingelind”:
I had difficulties with understanding where the song tries to take us. The song just moved by me. It’s a kitschy Pop ballad that the Estonian language just lift up. The missing puzzle piece is probably some emotions and more interesting production. Considering the strong semi-final, I don’t see Janet qualifying.
#5. Mariliis Jõgeva – Unistustes (Eng: In Dreams)
Mariliis has competed in “Eesti Laul 2015” when she performed “Kolm päeva tagasi” and ended in 9th place in the semi-final:
In “Eesti Laul 2020” she will perform Unistustes:
With first listening, all that came up to my mind is how Icelandic the style of the song is. It’s a sweet mid-tempo pop. The song is pretty catchy and Mariliis has a pleasant voice. The chorus is way better than the verses. Nevertheless, there is a missing spice in the soup. The production may seem too planned. The whole package looks like the queen of the class sings about how wonderful the world is.
#6. Merilin Mälk – Miljon Sammu (Eng: One Million Steps)
Merilin Mälk is 18 years old Estonian singer. She rose to fame in 2018, when she participated in “Eesti otsib superstaari” and ended in 3rd place in the final.
In “Eesti Laul 2020” she will perform “Miljon Sammu”:
It’s an up-tempo Pop song with electronic motifs. The song stands out with his production, but it feels a little bit generic. The computer processed voice should be changed in the live show. The singer has a lot of confidence and a nice voice. The chorus is bombastic, but in my opinion, the production compensatory on the generic song.
#7. Shira – Out In Space
Shira is the nickname of Marika Rodionova, 21 years old Estonian Jewish singer. Shira recorded backing vocals for Victor Crone in his Eurovision 2019 song “Storm“. She hasn’t released any songs yet, therefore “Out In Space” it is her first released song.
That’s what I call s surprise. Shira is a young artist that came to the competition with tones of talent and charisma. The song is interesting, curious and sophisticated. Shira has a warm and captivating voice and excellent interpretation. You can understand every single word she pronounces. The song has some dark elements, but the main genres are rock and blues. The words are not kitschy and her voice has a unique stamp. For me, Shira is one of the contenders to win “Eesti Laul 2020”. With the right staging, she can lead Estonia to a decent achievement in Eurovision 2020.
#8. Traffic – Üks Kord Veel (Eng: “One More Time”)
Traffic is an Estonian band that’s well known for its participating in “Eesti Laul”. The band consists of Silver Laas, Stig Rästa, Tõnis Kivisild , Ivo Priilinn, and Robert Viagra. However, Stig won’t be present on stage.
The first attempt was in “Eesti Laul 2009″ when they performed “See päev” and ended in 2nd place in the final.
Their second attempt was in “Eesti Laul 2012″, where they performed “NASA” and ended in last place (10th) in the final.
Two years after, the band took part in “Eesti Laul 2014” and performed “Für Elise” which led them to finish in 3rd place in the final:
In “Eesti Laul 2020“, the band will perform the song “Üks kord vee“
It’s a very basic anthem ballad with Country foundations. The song was written by Victor Crone (Estonia 2019) and Stig Rästa who composed Estonian entries for Eurovision 2015,2016,2019 and represented Estonia in 2015 alongside Elina Born. The song is almost cyclic. It feels like a group of college friends that gathered to play together just for fun. I’m sorry, but I find nothing special or attractive in this song.
9. Uku Suviste – What Love Is
Uku Suviste is 37 years old Estonian singer, songwriter, pianist, and music producer. He studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, majoring in singing, contemporary writing and music production. Through the years, he has released more than 15 singles.
Uku has participated twice in “Eesti Laul“. His first time was in 2017, where he performed the song “Supernatural” and didn’t qualify for the final:
His second time was last year, Uku performed his song “Pretty Little Liar” and came 2nd in the final:
In “Eesti Laul 2020″ he will perform “What Love is“:
The song was written by Uku Suviste and Sharon Vaughn who was one of the writers behind “Scream” by Sergey Lazarev (Russia 2019). The song starts with gentle piano playing. It’s a little bit dated ballad song. The song arrives at its peak in the choruses. The genre can be described as a power Pop Rock Ballad. The vibe of the song is of Russian Pop song from the past. I think that the opening of the song is too weak. Nevertheless, Uku is a possible winner of “Eesti Laul 2020″.
#10. Uudo Sepp – I’m Sorry. I Messes Up
Uudo Sepp is 22 years old Estonian singer. He is well known for winning the 7th season of “Eesti otsib superstaari”. Uudo has released one album so far in 2018.
Uudo will perform “I’m Sorry. I Messes Up“:
It’s a mainstream radio Pop song that has all the ingredients to be a radio hit. Uudo has a special voice that fits well the guitar playing. He uses wisely his flint voice. But the problem is that the song is a little bit one among others. In other words, it’s not a lie to claim that it resembles other songs. The last half-minute of the song is just beautiful, especially when the music disappears. I don’t see any problem for Uudo to qualify for the final. His main challenge will be the final itself.
#11. Viinerid – Kapa Kohi-LA
It’s a Hip-Hop Rap song that’s based on guitar playing with electronic elements. The song is more a funny concept song than a music object. The Rap is oppressive and these sausages aren’t tasty at all. Estonia tends to include an entertainment song in “Eesti Laul” almost every year. Last year we had: ÖED – Öhuloss and KAIA TAMM – WO SIND DIE KATZEN?. At least, they weren’t a headache maker. The only advantage that I find in “Kapa Kohi-LA” is that it’s shorter than 3 minutes.
#12. ZiggyWild – Lean On Me
ZiggyWild is an Estonian band that was formed in 2012. The band consists of 4 members: Laura Squirt/ Prits – vocals, Ken Einberg – bass, Tarvi Aldur – Guitar, and Henri-Hannes Sell (drums).
Laura Prits has participated in “Eesti Laul 2017” when she performed the song “Hey Kiddo” and failed to qualify for the final.
In “Eesti Laul 2020”, ZiggyWild will perform “Lean On Me“:
ZiggyWild reminisce the wonderful style of the 1970’s Rock&Roll. Laura has a stable and convincing voice. The melody is based on electric guitar, bass, and drums. The chorus may be repetitive. Laura’s voice fits this Genre. The section that stats on 1:50 is the best in the song. People who don’t like Rock, won’t appreciate the song. For me, it is one of the refreshing entries in “Eesti Laul 2020“
My Ranking of the 12 songs will be:
|Shira – Out In Space|
|Jaagup Tuisk – Beautiful Lie|
|Uku Suviste – What Love Is|
|Uudo Sepp – I’m Sorry. I Messes Up|
|ZiggyWild – Lean On Me|
|Merilin Mälk – Miljon Sammu|
|Mariliis Jõgeva – Unistustes|
|German & Violina – Heart Winder|
|Janet – Hingelind|
|Traffic – Üks Kord Veel|
|INGER – Only Dream|
|Viinerid – Kapa Kohi-LA|
My Prediction of the qualifiers in a random order:
Jaagup Tuisk – Beautiful Lie
Uku Suviste – What Love Is
Shira – Out In Space
Uudo Sepp – I’m Sorry. I Messes Up
German & Violina – Heart Winder
Traffic – Üks Kord Veel