Eurovision First Listen: Is Tanja “Amazing” Enough for Estonia?

Tanja (Photo: Eurovision / EBU)
Tanja (Photo: Eurovision / EBU)

It’s more upbeat than last year’s entry, but is this year’s Estonian entry too much of a copycat?

Estonia has a spotty record in the recent history of the Eurovision Song Contest.  In the past five years they’ve been as high as 6th place (in 2009 and 2012), but they’ve also been within the bottom five acts of the competition twice, and didn’t even make the final in 2010.  Last year they sent Birgit’s “Et uus saaks alguse”, a country-ish ballad that really didn’t resonate with the contest audience, barely making it into the final and ending up in 20th overall.  How will this year’s entry, Tanja’s “Amazing”, going to fare?  Let’s take a listen:

Well, as far as the song itself goes, it’s a massive improvement over the extended yawn of last year’s performance.  The melody feels a bit like an echo of Loreen’s “Euphoria” from a few years ago, but manages to feel original enough to stand on its own.  That said, my least favorite part of the song is Tanja’s vocals; they’re a little over the top and don’t stay as in key as it feels the song requires.  It also feels like her backing singers are doing most of the heavy lifting here.  Still, it’s engaging enough that it has a good chance of getting to the finals.

And then there’s this performance.  Remember a few sentences ago when I called the song an echo of “Euphoria”?  The current staging of the song is basically if you took the last bridge/chorus choreography from Loreen’s performance of the song in Azerbaijan and stretched it to the whole of the song.  Again, what Tanja and her team have done feels unique enough to stand on its own merits, but I’m concerned if when everything’s put together, Europe’s just going to remember the better song/performance that this seems to be inspired from and vote for other entries.

A Brief Word From Our Sponsors:

About Ben Smith 228 Articles
Ben has been writing about TV, music, and pop culture in some form or another since 2009, including stints at Mental Floss and Temporary Obsession. When not solving puzzles of some sort or consuming pop culture at a frightening pace, he can be found collecting shiny pieces of the internet at GoodAtInter.net. E-mail: ben@whatelseison.tv