First Listen: “What’s the Pressure” for Belgium

Having found their rhythm last year with Loïc Nottet, Belgium looks to Laura Tesoro to continue the success in Stockholm.

At the 2016 Eurosong contest, actress and singer Laura Tesoro beat out four other contestants to win a trip to Stockholm next May. Take a listen to her song, “What’s the Pressure?”

This song has a lot going for it at a very early point in the ESC cycle; I’m a sucker for any song with a great bass line, and one that’s reminiscent of Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust” is an extra bonus. Overall, “What’s the Pressure?” is well-produced and feels radio ready, with a singable melody, danceable beat, and uplifting message. Australia’s fifth-place finish last year proved that funk can be successful at the Contest, and Belgium is well-poised to make that a trend. That’s not to say this is a perfect entry; Laura Tesoro’s voice reminds me of Audra Mae, which is a good thing, except she’s missing some of AM’s strength and huskiness. It makes me wonder whether this song will translate as well from the recording studio to the stage, especially after a long pre-Contest promotional tour.

In any case, we’ve got a strong contender early in the selection season — congrats to Belgium, and to Laura Tesoro!

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