Nano – Chasing Rivers

“Swedish Hozier! I mean that as a compliment. Although it is Swedish Hozier Slurring His Words A Bit.”

Tim: Last one from the final, and it did well with the juries but not very well with the punters, and I think I know why (and no, it’s not the weird mini-Nano).

Tom: Swedish Hozier! I mean that as a compliment. Although it is Swedish Hozier Slurring His Words A Bit.

Tim: See, it’s a good track. Powerful strong ballad, sung well, nice backing chorus, got everything it needs. As a song, it’s good.

Tom: Sure, it’ll do — but it’s in a very tough field.

Tim: It’s not twelve-points-from-every-jury good, but it’d be a decent enough Eurovision entry, so it’s doing alright with the jury. Except, Nano was at Melodifestivalen two years ago, with the very memorable Hold On. It had his same style – same voice, backing choir, passionate message, and we even made that exact same Hozoer comparison – but crucially, a whole lot more on top. A massive amount more, with blazing lights, horns and everything, and in comparison, this just doesn’t cut it.

Tom: You’re not wrong: that final chorus is great, but it doesn’t compare to the past.

Tim: That one was in first place with the televote, with the voters being tragically overruled by the jurors. This one? Nowhere near.

Nano – Hold On

“Take Me To Church, reworked for Melodifestivalen.”

Tim: There’s an ASTONISHINGLY good new Sound of Arrows track out today, but we’ll get to that on Monday as we’ve one more from the Melodifestivalen final. First with the Swedes, second overall, and, well, it’s quite the track.

Tim: It took me a while to realise what it was that got me going so much about this – not in the jump around banging sense of getting me going, but in the powerful and heavy sense. It’s that it’s basically…

Tom: Take Me To Church with drum and bass?

Tim: You know, I was all set for a “cannot believe you’re comparing those two” for this, but yes: it’s Take Me To Church, reworked and remixed for Melodifestivalen. You’ve got your strong, but not overstated, male vocal under a comparatively quiet backing in the verses, turning everything up several notches for the chorus, and then – and here’s where the Melodifestivalen bit comes in – an enormous instrumental section where everything goes nuts but doesn’t lose any of the depth.

Tom: And the thing is, it works. It really works.

Tim: Flashing lights, drums and beats everywhere, but you’ve still got your minor key and flowing from one note to the next rather than jumping all over the place.

Tom: And then for the second verse, there’s still a bit more drumbeat in there. This is exactly how you handle a change like that.

Tim: There’s a couple of things I’d change about the performance – it might seem more meaningful if he didn’t look like he’d just walked in off the street after a day drinking in his nearest Wetherspoon’s, and he should really leave the dancing to the actual dancers – but I can’t fault the song. At all.