Georgia is going the alternative route this year. The band Young Georgian Lolitaz, led by singer Nika Kocharov, will represent the nation in Stockholm. Their style is not a style commonly liked by Eurovision fans and one could even expect them to be down the rankings with most fans. Enough reason for Nick, who’s normally more into schlager, pop and ballads, to check these five songs out. Is there anything there to like for him?
Right then, it was quite a task to start listening to this lot as I really wasn’t convinced that I’d like anything. Song 1, Midnight Gold, immediately brings a positive surprise. The first two minutes are really pleasant, it’s quite a good rock tune, a bit louder than I’m used to, but definitely not bad. However, after 2:12, right after the excellent guitar solo, the guitar gets an added sound which just make it sound noisy and trashy. No doubt, there will be people liking that final minute, but for me, it harms the song and makes it less accessible.
Pain In My Heart
There’s a motor in the background here? Not quite sure if that’s supposed to be like that, but it’s a bit distracting. Other than that, this is melancholy represented in rock. Heavy guitars, a big drum in the back announcing the chorus will kick off now and then the chorus actually doesn’t really kick off. Nika’s voice is much more distinctive in this entry and quite frankly, this is what I mean by accessible. Except for the motor sound, there’s no reason why the mainstream music lover would automatically be put off by this song. This is a good effort to show their character and personality, but also not to scare people away. That however also means that it fails to leave an impression. Thirty seconds after this ended, I have no idea how it went.
Right Or Wrong
The start of this is quite funky, then the guitars and drums kick in. There’s a nice hook to the verse with Nika repeating I always try to run a few times. Fitting the unconventional style this band is delivering, the chorus has then completely been left out. The build-up is once again there, but the actual chorus is done by the instruments only and is started by a high note by Nika. This has given me the most 80s vibes of all of these songs.
I have positively surprised myself as I could quite easily listen to this song regularly without feeling the need to skip it. And as we said, this is not my usual style of music at all. I’m not all that sure how this would work in Eurovision – just coming up with a recap bit for this is a task on itself. But this is really pleasant and I actually like this.
Sugar And Milk
Starting off with three seconds of nostalgia, before the nostalgia is wiped out by the guitars I’ve now managed to get used to. There’s hints of Nirvana in the background here, which should be really pleasant and impressive, but this entry doesn’t quite do it for me. We had no compromises in the first song, a good compromise in the second and just a good entry in the third and I don’t know where this fits. It actually just sits there. The guitars don’t shine as much, Nika’s voice doesn’t shine as much and, as you could see on the title, the lyrics don’t quite cut it either. I won’t go as far as saying I hate this, but there’s nothing here that makes me like it either.
The first thing I wonder about is that title. It has, on purpose, been written as one word. This is a heartfelt midtempo effort which shouts nostalgia and melancholy. The lyrics are quite nice and listening to this lyrics, you could interpret the title as: ‘We were separated, but we now came back together and we agree.’ And as the ‘we’ is now reunited, you could write ‘Weagree’. I like this. I really do, but I don’t think I want to see this in Stockholm. Young Georgian Lolitaz have, in three of the previous four songs, shown what they can do with heavy guitars and drums on a Eurovision stage and this would not fit in that picture. It’s the most accessible, it’s probably the one that would give them the best result, but this doesn’t do what I’d expect from them as a rock group. It would probably be a steady factor on my playlist (not many plays, but few skips at the same time) and it’s decent enough for me. The hook is nice. Remarkable is that Nika co-wrote this himself, so there may be a preference for this one.
This has been a positive surprise to me. Fans normally will not like these entries and I don’t expect them to at all. In fan polls, OGAE voting, opinions on forums, we will see Georgia down the bottom. I do however feel that that may be underestimating what Georgia will be able to do on the Eurovision stage. There are no winners here and whether they’ll qualify is a big question too (especially with 38 entries left to be revealed), but Young Georgian Lolitaz have managed to make their music accessible and sometimes even went beyond accessible and almost gave in to Eurovision expectations.
There are two songs I’d like to scrap out immediately. With any sort of sense, Georgia will not choose Pain In My Heart and especially Sugar And Milk. Those songs are nowhere close to what Georgia should even be considering. The other three entries stand out miles above the rest.
Midnight Gold is my third place. I like the first two minutes, but I switch off afterwards and you’ll need the full three minutes of impressing people to get anywhere. After that, it’s a close race between Weagree and Right Or Wrong. The first, a melancholic ballad, the second a true rock entry with 80s vibes. If you’d ask me what I’d prefer to listen to, it’d be the first. If you’d ask me what I’d prefer Georgia to send as I think it represents Young Georgian Lolitaz better, it’s the second. And that would therefore be my pick for Stockholm: Right Or Wrong.