Yohanna – Revolving Doors

“Let’s have a game of Guess What It Is About The Lyric Video That Annoys Tim Far More Than It Should.”

Tim: Nice ballad here for you, but to keep you interested in case you doze off, let’s have a game of Guess What It Is About The Lyric Video That Annoys Tim Far More Than It Should. GWIIATLVTASTFMTIS for short.

Tom: Is it the “wanna” instead of “want to”?

Tim: It’s not, no – that sort of thing I long ago learned to live with. It is actually: WHY DO THE ‘O’S IN THE ‘DOOR’ CHORUS LINE CLOSE LIKE A NORMAL DOOR AND NOT REVOLVE? This is the WHOLE POINT of the song – if the doors were just regular doors, you’d just go straight through them, be in a happy place, assuming we’re sticking with that metaphor, and there’d be no need for the song. Just plain silly. (Also there’s the ‘Arrangment’ and ‘Keypboard’ in the credits as well, but I can live with that.)

Tom: And, as someone who does this sort of animation, I can tell you it wouldn’t actually be that much more difficult.

Tim: I KNOW. But anyway, as for the actual song – it’s basically exactly what we’d expect from Yohanna, following her previous couple of appearances on these pages. If you’re in the mood for a gentle ballad that’d fit nicely on a Disney soundtrack, it’s a very good gentle ballad to have on standby – the revolving door metaphor stands up fairly well to scrutiny, and she’s got perfectly on point vocal skills, and, when called for at the end, an excellent set of lungs to blast those out with.

Tom: I don’t have enough slow ballad music in my library: it doesn’t tend to get me excited enough to get past my threshold of “I actually want to download this”. This is a great slow ballad: as usual, it doesn’t get past that threshold, but it’s not bad at all.

Tim: Basically, if I hadn’t get annoyed with this lyric video, I’d have no problems at all. It’s probably for the best that the designer didn’t put his name on the credits.

Rok feat. Yohanna – Find A Better Man

“Still too slow and too ballad-y”

Tim: Remember Yohanna? Iceland, 2009?

Tom: Um. Actually, no I didn’t, but I stand by my earlier comments: too slow, too ballad-y.

Tim: Ah. Well, let’s plough ahead with this anyway, with her here providing extra vocals for new Icelandic pairing Rok.

Tim: And she’s basically the perfect choice for a pair of two experienced guys hoping to launch themselves as a new act with a song like this. With no baggage carried over from previous work as guitar-pop singer or Eurovision songwriter, it’s a perfect example of this genre – very gentle, very calm, until it needs to develop and make an impact towards the end of the song, which it then does perfectly.

Tom: It’s still too slow and too ballad-y. Each time I think it’s going to kick itself up a notch, it just… doesn’t. The last chorus should be so much bigger than it is: instead, it’s pretty much the same as the first, only with a few extra notes over the top of it.

Tim: I’m actually going to say here pretty much what I said last time we mentioned Yohanna – I’m very glad that not all songs are like this, because if they were then (a) it’d be a very dull musical landscape and (b) it wouldn’t be nearly as great when a prime example comes along, as it has done here.

Tom: And I suppose I can agree with you on that: if this is the sort of song you’re looking for, then yes, it does the job nicely. It’s just this is never the kind of song I’m looking for.

Tim: Well I occasionally am, and this is now one I look forward to hearing when I get in after a long day and just want to scream.

Saturday Flashback: Yohanna – Is It True?

It wouldn’t be a shame if more Eurovision songs were like this.

Tim: This weekend marks the start of quite a few countries’ hunt for their Eurovision entries – Finland started last night, and Norway and Iceland get going tonight. Let’s mark the occasion by looking back at a previous entry, from Iceland in 2009. Context: this was placed second, after Norway’s Alexander Rybak won by the largest margin in the contest’s history. (Still can’t believe Malena Ernman came 21st, though.)

Tom: As long as they don’t get Pete Bloody Waterman back for the UK, I’ll be happy.

Tim: No fancy tricks here, no massive lighting effects – just a couple of nice gentle key changes, plenty of emotional singing from a lady who’s just screwed things up with her boyfriend, and a dolphin flying through the sky in the background. I like this a lot, and it wouldn’t be a shame if more Eurovision songs were like this.

Tom: I strongly disagree with you. This is too slow, too ballad-y, for a night of entertainment that should – in my opinion – be about celebration and enthusiasm. I’m not advocating camp, kitschy mock-pop – that should be left back where it belongs – and I’m not saying there shouldn’t be a few songs like this. But ballads got the first and second place last year. Let’s have a bit of schlager placing this time, please.

Tim: Oh, absolutely – I’m as much as campaigner for the Charlotte Perellis and DJ Bobos of the competition as the next guy – I just think it’s nice to have a break every now and again, with something slightly calming but still musically interesting.

Anyway, what is also brilliant is the steadicam shot that starts at 2:21 (although nothing quite beats the Segway in Belarus’s performance).

Tom: Now that I can agree with you on. Still can’t believe “Eyes That Never Lie” didn’t make it through to the final.