Rein Alexander wins second Norwegian Melodi Grand Prix heat

Beating three other participants, Rein Alexander just secured himself a spot in this year’s Norwegian final. 2010 Eurovision participant Didrik Solli-Tangen and his brother Emil also performed in tonight’s pre-qualification heat.

Once again, 4 acts competed in duels – with the winner qualifying for the national final taking place in Trondheim on the 15th of Frebruary. Five regional heats will each provide their winner who will compete in the final alongside 5 pre-qualified songs. Tonight, it was time for Øst (East).

The duels

Just as last week, no duels were known beforehand. The draw simply took place on stage in the beginning of the show. One can however argue that it really isn’t a draw. They don’t mix the names properly, and everyone paying attention can see who is going to be drawn next.

Duel 1

Tore PettersonThe Start Of Something New

Danish broadcaster DR brings the orchestra back to its national final this year where all music will be live. This song would have benefitted from that. It brings back memories to 2007 where now late Roger Cicero represented Germany with the song Frauen regier’n die Welt. It has the same vibe to it – and in moments, Tore even sounds like him. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work here. It lacks charm – and his bright yellow jacket and the four dancers seems out of place.


Kim Wigaard & Maria MohnFool For Love

Disney better pay attention to this couple! Here we have a song directly cut out of a Disney musical. It’s a lovely ballad, which simply makes you close your eyes and dream away. If you happen to open your eyes, you will see a couple who match each other well on stage. They have the checmistry, which is so important for a song like this – and near the end, they are joined by seven violin players! This song might be a standard recipe, but nothing wrong with that when it is as lovely as this.

= Kim Wigaard & Maria Mohn

Duel 2

JÆGER – How About Mars

Anna Jæger’s voice might remind a bit of Lena Meyer-Landrut, but this eletro-pop song is nothing like Satellite (Germany 2010). Anna wants to take you on a spectacular trip to Mars, but right now on planet Earth, she is competing for the much shorter trips – first to Trondheim, and then to Rotterdam, the Netherlands. If you in 1990, would have asked someone to describe with a futurestic version of 2020, they might just have come up with this! It does have its cuteness, and it’s hard to tell how this can do.


Rein AlexanderOne Last Time

Here we have a man who has played the role as Jean Valjean and his deep voice does indeed match with Les Misérables. This song has a certain resemblance in style to When Spirits Are Calling My Name (Sweden 2000), and the performance a bit like Higher Ground (Denmark 2018). But – with one significant difference – the typical Europop sound, often heard from Sweden for example, has been added. Hard to describe, but kinda like if a mix between a sami and a viking would meet Carola! I really shouldn’t like it, but somehow it works and I find myself singing along to the chorus near the end. I am capured, and I know, I will be listening to this song again.

= Rein Alexander

Duel 3

The winners of the two previous duels met in a final duel in order to decide who of them would qualify for the final: Kim Wigaard & Maria Mohn’s Disney ballad up against Rein Alexander’s viking performance.

No video was used. Both performed once again – and where Kim & Maria improved a bit, Rein’s choreography seems to fail a bit in this second performance. Finally the winner was announced: Rein Alexander

Didrik & EmilOut Of Air

In every of these five regional heats, the viewers are introduced to one of the pre-qualified acts. Tonight, it was time for the two brothers; Didrik and Emil Solli-Tangen. Those who expected a ballad of Didrik’s 2010 Eurovision entry, will be disappointed. Out Of Air is nothing like it. Didrik is a trained classical singer and Emil studied opera – with those backgrounds, this is unusal. It’s a well produced pop banger and sure to attract an audience. Some will find it too much Eurovision-like while others already look forward to see Didrik represent his country once again. No matter what, it is indeed a strong contender to win this year’s Norwegian final.

Voting issue adressed

In last week’s heat, we saw the debut of this new online voting system. It was stretched to – and above its maximum, which naturally resulted in people not being able to vote. How many is not known, but it was a topic which took a lot of attention.

Norwegian broadcaster NRK reacted, and doubled the capacity for today’s show. 

Norway at the Eurovision Song Contest

Three victories, 11 times last, of which four resulted in the dreaded ‘nul points’. Yes, the Norwegian Eurovision history includes a bit of everything. Many reasons to celebeate, but just as many – if not more – reasons to just forget that year and move on to next.

Boobysocks’s La’ Det Swinge (Norway 1985) is today a classic Eurovision winner and for many Norwegian Eurovision fans, its when it all started. Norway won twice more, and just like Bobbysocks, it is well remembered songs; Secret Garden’s Nocturne (1995) and Alexander Rybak’s Fairytale (2009).

Last year, Norway was represented by KEiiNO and the song Spirit In The sky. They finished 6th with 331 points.

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