Festivali i Kenges (Albania) National Final 2022 Reviews: Alban Ramosaj and Denis Sakura

Now that we know the Czech Republic won’t announce their winning entry until long after my midnight (Australian time) deadline, I’m going to make a start on reviews of the entries to the Albanian national final, Festivali i Kenges. Tomorrow I’ll do a full review of the Czech entry, and then return to Albania for the remaning 18 songs.

Alban Ramosaj — “Theje”
Great big dramatic ballad by a big man with a big voice. There’s a fair bit of loud, emotional singing with a big note or two. It feels like a combination of some of the elements we’ve come to expect from Albanian songs over the years. However, the sum of the parts don’t quite add up to a satisfying whole and I couldn’t find much to hold on to, nor to tempt me back. The song is a bit too much of everything.

Denis Skura “Pse nuk flet, mama?”
Well, I wasn’t expecting a mix of soft rock and opera with a faintly Christmas vibe, but that’s what this song is. On paper it sounds like a complete mess, but Skura executes surprisingly well, and the choir coming in towards the end is exactly how a song like this should finish. I’m not sure this would do well in May, but for the time being I quite like it, except for the child’s voice saying “mama” right at the end.