Eurovision 2014: Finland — Softengine — Something Better

Finland found "Something Better" in Softengine's entry for this year's Eurovision Song Contest.  Is it the best in the second semi-final?

Country: Finland
Song Title: “Something Better”
Artist: Softengine
Semi-Final: Second, Position 8
Last year’s entry: “Marry Me” – Krista Siegfrieds (24th Place)

I generally like Finland’s entries, but last year was really pushing it for me.  I liked the poppy nature of Krista Siegfriends’ “Marry Me”, but the song’s lyrics felt like a relic of a less progressive time.  Eurovision voters appeared to agree with me, letting it through to the Grand Final but leaving it close to the bottom of the final vote count with a 24th place finish (out of 26).  This year’s selection, Softengine’s “Something Better”, is, as its title suggests, something better than last year’s song.  In his First Listen, Mike mentioned that it felt like a contender, although it needed a few tweaks here and there.  Let’s check in now that we’re about a month out from the competition:

This song is one of my favorites of the second semi-final.  Everything Mike pointed out seems to have been smoothed out, although that may just be the studio recording.  There’s just enough of a rock edge to the instrumentation of the song (which reminds me of The Killers more than any other musical reference point), and an overall anthemic nature that reminds me of A Friend in London’s “New Tomorrow”, one of my favorite entries from a few years ago.

The one thing that could ultimately determine whether this entry sinks or swims is the performance.  Softengine’s direct neighbors in the performing order, Lithuania and Ireland, both have songs that are about a similar tempo and energy level – a weaker performance could leave viewers feeling everything was too same-y.  The falsetto nature of some of the vocals could also prove tricky if any nerves are present on stage.

Eurovision MiniPop Icons created by Ben MorrisSee all 37 MiniPops here!

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