Latvia sends Musiqq – "Angel in Disguise"
Continuing on with the theme set by Ukraine’s “Angel” and Cyprus’s “San Aggelos S’agapisa (I Loved You Like an Angel)”, Latvia also chose a heavenly theme for their representative to Germany this year: “Angel in Disguise” by Musiqq.
Musiqq, formed by Marats Ogļezņevs and Emīls Balceris, formed back in 2009 and had a hit album last year back in Latvia. They beat ten other songs to get the ticket to Düsseldorf, including “Banjo Laura” by Eurovision alum Lauris Reiniks and the disco-tinged “You Are” by Pieneņu Vīns (Dandelion Wine).
Compared to Latvia’s offerings from 2009 and 2010, “Angel in Disguise” is a marked improvement. For the past two years, the nation’s come in last place in their respective semifinal, and they haven’t made it into the Top Ten since 2005. Will Musiqq make it out of the Semis? It’s tough to tell at this point, but it’s entirely within the realm of possibility. At the very least, they can likely leave their last-place days behind them, as there are definitely weaker entries in their division.
Posted on February 28, '11, in 2011, Latvia. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.
I was not quite sure what you meant by weaker entries in their division, since this post was written before Fyrom and Belarus had selected. Angel In Disguise has a very radio-friendly beat. Is that what makes it so much better than the past two entries? At least it is not as complicated as Probka, but it is not as sophisticated as What For?. The rap section (what is it with the sudden popularity of rap sections this year? Do they not know that rap has always fared poorly?), if you did not get it from the parenthetical note, is a detriment.You may be right that Latvia has a stronger entry than Fyrom and Belarus, but what will make people vote for it? I think I would have enjoyed Banjo Laura slightly more than this entry, and it might have stood out more than this one.-Finland
I'm pretty sure I wrote this post after Macedonia had picked their entry (keep in mind the difference in time zones…CST is seven hours off of CET), but that's a minor detail. When I think of an entry's strength, I try to think of it bilaterally: how an ESC fan would react, and what a first-time listener would think. Someone hearing a song for the first time on Eurovision night only hears those three minutes of music and sees the presentation. A more hardcore ESC fan (like us!) might think of a song's deeper qualities, how it fits into a voting bloc, maybe an artist's ESC history, etc, as well as the song's presentation and sound. There's no magic formula, but if you ask a group of newbies and a group of ESC fanatics what their favorite entry was last year, I'm pretty sure you'll end up with a pair of different lists. I'm also pretty sure that the superfans are outnumbered by more casual viewers (those who only hear the songs the night of the event, or listen to them briefly once or twice beforehand, as opposed to people like us, who lovingly obsess over them).Keeping that in mind, Latvia's song is catchy, simple, and radio-friendly, which might catch the newcomers. There are also a few "love-it-or-hate-it" entries in this semi (Moldova, Belgium), and a few that have been panned by fans (and I think we know which ones those are). I have no intention of placing any bets, but this is just where my head is at. I also know that a lot of this is chalked up to personal opinion, and I'm not trying to convince anybody of anything. (If I had been, I would have gone knocking on doors all across Europe, begging people to vote for Malcolm Lincoln last year.)
You think very logically! Some points of mine, though:"Love-it-or-hate-it" entries benefit from the "love" half of that title. Haters just do not vote for it, since there are no negative votes (or maybe there are, if you vote for all entries in the semi-final (or Final, for that matter) except for the one you hate, but such votes would be 18 (or 24) times as expensive as a positive vote.). This is why "love-it-or-hate-it" entries make such an impact; haters know that there are lovers out there, so they hate it even more than they would otherwise (look at Lady Gaga; the more you hate her, the more famous she becomes.), because they perceive such entries as a threat. That is why I always strive to be positive (have you noticed?)!Slightly off topic, but you forgot to list Ireland along with Belgium and Moldova! How could you forget about Jedward? Maybe Jedward is not as popular as it thinks it is. Worry not; I actually forgot about them, too, for a while!Also, how many last place entries were outright panned by fans? How many were merely ignored? The last two Latvian entries, as far as I know, were not extensively panned, just ignored. I believe we even have some last place entries that were in fact loved (not so much in modern-day Eurovision, but in the olden days).If you watch Project Runway, you may notice that, often in a given bottom-two, point of view tends to beat out boring (or not so "unique" point of view). So I am not saying that Angel In Disguise is necessarily boring, but does it have this unique point of view? I personally find this much better than Fyrom and Belarus, mainly because it is inoffensive, but this is what we call "playing it safe", is it not? Latvia was not even playing it so safe in 2009 and 2010, was it?-Finland (which is in the EET, so we are in fact eight hours apart)