By Aline Mahrud
WHEN? 7pm UK time Saturday 11 March 2023
WHERE? Avicii Arena, Stockholm
WHERE DO I WATCH? SVT Play
2024 will be the 50th anniversary of ABBA‘s Eurovision win and we would imagine Sweden would be quite keen to host – and therefore win in 2023.
- Read on for reasons including how we think the finalists would fare in Eurovision in Liverpool in May
10. Loreen Tattoo (Jimmy “Joker” Thörnfeldt, Jimmy Jansson, Lorine Talhaoui, Moa Carlebecker, Peter Boström, Thomas G:son) PREDICTION: 1st to 5th
We think Sweden’s best chance of a Eurovision win in 2023 is to pick 2012 victor Loreen who is the red-hot favourite to triumph again with this memorably staged and catchy song. It reminds us a little of the ethnicity of Madonna’s Frozen in its relaxed middle 8 but it is the claustrophobic staging and hooks of a Cazzi Opeia co-write that has us most buzzing for this. Sure, Loreen’s diction can be worked on ahead of the finalen but we think this would do very well in Liverpool in May. Plum running order slot.
4. Marcus and Martinus Air (Jimmy “Joker” Thörnfeldt, Joy Deb, Linnea Deb, Marcus Gunnarsen, Martinus Gunnarsen) PREDICTION: 2nd to 5th
These Norwegian twins are probably Loreen’s closest competition and while we think the Jedward comparison is a little unfair this is a song drawing on 90s dance, as Tattoo does, that is both professionally and memorably performed. Their looks might earn them younger voters’ support but their nationality might work against them. Enjoying the slow-motion dancing.
7. Smash Into Pieces Six Feet Under (Andreas “Giri” Lindbergh, Benjamin Jennebo, Chris Adam, Jimmy “Joker” Thörnfeldt, Joy Deb, Linnea Deb, Per Bergquist) PREDICTION: 6th to 10th
As we write, there are 5 Thörnfeldt co-writes in the finalen and they could be joined by a 6th depending on the outcome of Saturday’s semi final. This is not our usual fare but is a strong electro rock song that will doubtless be a big domestic hit even if it can’t quite pip euphoric Loreen to the win here. Reminds of this year’s very strong Australian entry. Doubtless Aussies’ Voyager will be hoping this doesn’t join them in Liverpool. The running order makes us think this could be Loreen’s main competition.
6. Maria Sur Never Give Up (Anderz Wrethov, Laurell Barker) PREDICTION: 6th to 10th
There has been a lot of criticism of Melodifestivalen’s use of a songwriting stable to pen entries to order and here’s an example of where it works rather well. Ukranian refugee Sur’s song of defiance can’t help but move the heart although we were a little put off by the thin vocal which we think could be improved. Likely to strike a chord with viewers if it makes it to Liverpool however.
12. Paul Rey Royals (Dino Medanhodzic, Jimmy “Joker” Thörnfeldt, Liam Cacatian Thomassen, Paul Rey) PREDICTION: 6th to 10th
By far and away Rey’s best ever MF entry this is a catchy, handclap-driven dollop of pop that has slightly nonsensical lyrics with a particular obsession about royalty that we do not share but apart from that it’s lots of fun and a big hit we think. False ending too. Regal.
2. Tone Sekelius Rhythm Of My Show (Anderz Wrethov, Dino Medanhodzic, Jimmy “Joker” Thörnfeldt, Tone Sekelius) PREDICTION: 6th to 10th
This isn’t what we were expecting from Sekelius at all. It’s quite understated compared to the banger she finished 5th with last year and much classier. It’s stylish and contemporary but is more of a performance to appreciate than really root for. We think Sekelius must be eyeing up a career in pop and this shrieks album incoming alert. Surprised by the death slot in the running order. Someone keen Sekelius doesn’t win!
5. Panetoz On My Way (Anders Wigelius, Daniel Nzinga, Jimmy Jansson, Nebeyu Baheru, Njol Badjie, Pa Modou Badjie, Robert Norberg) PREDICTION: 16th to 20th
This was a mixture of Swedish and English with a sunshine holiday vibe that we were surprised went direkt til finalen in a heat when the glorious Wiktoria could only come 5th with something that had a disco feel reminiscent of Alcazar but slightly more up to date. Its success still remains a little of a mystery to us.
- Jon Henrik Fjällgren, Arc North feat. Adam Woods Where You Are (Sávežan) (Calle Hellberg, Jon Henrik Fjällgren, Joy Deb, Oliver Belvelin, Oscar Christiansson, Richard Lästh, Tobias Lundgren, William Segerdahl) PREDICTION: 21st to 26th
KEiiNO proved a joik could be a commercial success but this feels a little tacked on to what is already a dancefloor-friendly effort. A step too far? Definitely the show opener.
The following 8 songs competed in Saturday’s semi final. Read our full thoughts on them.
11. Theoz Mer av dig (More Of You) (Axel Schylström, Jakob Redtzer, Peter Boström, Thomas G:son) PREDICTION: 11th to 15th
17-year-old Theoz performs a highly-choreographed, uptempo and poppy song that reminds us of Take That at their athletic early 90s best. Would benefit to these ears with a switch to English but that’s unlikely as it strives to prove itself in Sweden’s domestic final. Fabulously late draw for this to POP!
3. Mariette One Day (Jimmy Jansson, Thomas G:son, Mariette Hansson) PREDICTION: 16th to 20th
Heat 4 was probably most stacked in terms of quality and, although we predicted she’d struggle, this was a strong performance of a catchy pop song. This is Mariette’s 5th MF appearance and it’s clear why she’s always made the finalen because she’s a quality act. This is probably our favourite of all the songs she entered.
8. Kiana Where Did You Go (Jimmy “Joker” Thörnfeldt, Joy Deb, Linnea Deb) PREDICTION: 11th to 15th
SVT certainly has earned its money’s worth from Thörnfeldt and his 6 co-writes – this was the only 1 not to make the finalen. It will have been of some consolation that both entries that went direkt til finalen in Heat 4 were songs he’d co-written. This has both feet on the dancefloor, is enthusiastically and professionally performed.
9. Nordman Släpp alla sorger (Let go of all sorrows) (Jimmy Jansson, Thomas G:son) PREDICTION: 21st to 26th
Like Smash Into Pieces, Nordman offer something different to MF – a dark, almost gothic folk which definitely has its place. It’s not a genre we’ve much time for but there will definitely be an audience for this. Late running order means this is likely to attract the anti-Loreen vote although it may also cancel out Smash Into Pieces.
- Picture via YouTube courtesy SVT Melodifestivalen
- Have you heard any of these songs or seen any of these shows? Let us know what you thought in the comments below Heat 1 preview Heat 2 preview Heat 3 preview Heat 4 preview Heat 1 predictions Heat 2 predictions Heat 3 predictions Semi final predictions
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