Melodi Grand Prix (Norway) 2022 Semi-Final 3 Reviews: Sturla and Vilde

Sturla — “Skår i hjerte”
I haven’t used the word “indie” yet (or much) to describe songs, because I think unless you’re talking about someone who doesn’t have a label, or whose label is “independent” of one of the big labels, it’s a fairly vague term. However, this is the kind of thing I would be thinking about if I conjured up the idea of an indie synth pop ballad. It’s has something understated about it, from the atmospheric instrumentation to to Sturla’s carefully controlled, slightly husky vocals, it’s a song that maybe doesn’t jump out at you, but unfolds with repeat plays. Of course, the problem with Eurovision is that unless you’re a fan, most songs don’t get more than one or two listens.

Vilde — “Titans”
At its core, this is a modern anthemic pop song with just enough callbacks to earlier eras of synths (1980s) to set it apart from others with a similar sound. However, there’s more: the “heartbeat” bridge is a nifty innovation which gives the chorus an even greater impact when it hits, and the backing choir which bookends the track gives it a fuller, stadium-feel (as well as something to encourage audience-participation). All in all, it’s a polished, professional production. The only question I have, probably a minor one in the context of the song, is how much the mix is going to change on stage, given that the big note Vilde sings is very much at the back of the track in the studio version, whereas she’ll be front-and-centre at all times live.