Initial Review: “In Corpore Sano” by Konstrakta (Serbia)

One thing this adventure through the various national selections has shown me is that there are some music scenes I easily connect to, and others which are a struggle. Unfortunately, Serbia belongs to latter category. Admittedly, the announcement of their national selection process was fairly late in the game, especially with a 30+ line-up of songs. The end result was a bit of a surprise, but with victories in both the jury vote and the televote, it was clear that Serbia wanted to send Konstrakta with “In Corpore Sano” to Eurovision.

When I first gave this song a brief review in the flurry of the semis, I noted that the deadpan vocal delivery worked well given the musical dynamism around it. Now that I’ve seen the staging, the deadpan comment has some extra context. This is more an art project than a pop song, which is a compliment. Konstrakta’s staging is so immersive you tend to forget half the song as you watch her calmly wash her hands in her nurse’s uniform, her face emotionless. This is as confusing as it is fascinating.

Serbia have a tendency of qualifying for the final even when I think they won’t, so I’m reluctant to write this one off. It’s certainly going to be challenging to communicate the message — unfortunate, since it’s a really good one. The second semi-final looks to be the weaker one but not by a huge amount, so I can certainly see this getting through assuming it keeps and improves upon its striking staging. On the other hand, the televote could just think “this is too weird” and go elsewhere. I’m going to have to wait until I’ve listened to the full line-up and considered a potential running order before I can make a more definitive prediction for this one.