Editorials & Opinion

Xtra’s Pick of the 80s

Time to get spoiled with a new retrospective look at the ‘80s, as every Wednesday. Today, Max has chosen one of his faves from the 1989 contest:

Germany 1989: Nino de Angelo – Flieger (14th place)

Hiya guys! This is a song that I fell in love with the very first time I heard it, although my German was too rusty to understand 100% of the lyrics. I find it magical and I still don’t understand why it “landed” (the most suitable term to use, as the title of the song means “Flyers”) 14th out of 22 entries. Maybe, people watching the show in 1989 had quite a weird musical taste, considering who won (I’d better not go there…).

Flieger takes me back to a star-filled party after Stockholm pride a couple of years ago, when the DJ played it to close the night and I was one of the few still standing (as usual), giving it all to it thinking “this is my first and last chance to dance to this song”.

A handsome 25-year-old Nino de Angelo was responsible for the flawless vocals, full of emotion and interpreting what he was singing about in a very convincing way, as if he had written himself this nostalgic song about a lost love he longs to recover. In fact, this entry was composed by Dieter Bohlen (half of the hit duo Modern Talking) and was not the only song Bohlen had in that year’s contest (the Austrian entry was his too).

Watching the live performance makes me feel the song even more because Nino (a German guy of Italian descent, hence his looks) is accompanying the feelings in his voice with his facial expressions but probably should have avoided the temptation to shake his right leg to the beat all through the song (bless him!). The staging was rather simple, focused on the singer, but if you pay attention you can see he actually had company on stage (minute 4:05 of the video).

The track itself may have a very normal ‘80s synth-pop sound for the time when it took part in the ESC, but Nino’s voice makes it an anthem in my opinion.

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