XTRA Preview & Review: Melodifestivalen – Deltävling 1

The national final season is in full swing. Tonight, the first semi-final of Melodifestivalen 2018 is going to take place. We’ve taken a look at the entries and the procedure below, so here is the XTRA Preview & Review!

XTRA Preview: Melodifestivalen – Deltävling 1

Seven acts will be taking part tonight in order to make it through to the final of the Swedish national final for Eurovision, Melodifestivalen. Among them: One of last year’s favourites and a former Eurovision entrant.

The host of tonight’s show is David Lindgren. The singer returns for his second hosting job in the contest he tried winning a couple of times before. SVT 1 will air the show at 20:00 CET. Two acts will qualify for the final, two more will make it to Andra Chansen. For the other three, it’s over after tonight.

We will be tweeting throughout the show, live at @ESCXTRA!

XTRA Review: Melodifestivalen – Deltävling 1

Sigrid Bernson – “Patrick Swayze”

Nick: I think this won’t get very far in Melfest this year. It’s just very uninspired. For a dancer, her dancing doesn’t look that polished. It didn’t connect to me at all. It’s like Ace Wilder has gone mellow.
Score: 4.5/10
Tim: This works very well on studio, but when it got to the rehearsal clip, it did not connect to me, I think she’ll make it to Andra Chansen at the current rate.
Score: 5/10
Sami: The song makes me happy, it’s fun and danceable, but I feel that it lacks energy. It doesn’t look like they have fun on stage based on the short clip of the performance.
Score: 5/10
Dan: I like the sound of this, it’s what I’d describe as ‘cheap and cheerful’. It doesn’t really go anywhere though, just stays at the same pace all the way through. We’ve definitely heard this sound before many times before in Melfest.
Score: 5.5/10

John Lundvik – “My Turn”

Nick: A throwback to the early 00s. A bog standard ballad. He’s promising, vocally. But I’d suggest he returns to Melodifestivalen soon with a current song. That would do more, although I’m not disappointed to be thrown back to the early 00s.
Score: 7/10
Tim: Urban throwback and the sneak peek shows that the performance might be simplistic, which is something unique. He might just impress the swedish public and might make it to finalen.
Score: 7/10
Sami: John has a great voice, but the song is just not interesting enough. It’s nothing special and we have heard songs like this so many times before. The performance seems to be visually beautiful, but I don’t know if it’s enough to help this song to qualify.
Score: 5/10
Dan: Firstly, John has a fantastic tone in his voice and it really shines through in this. It sounds like an X Factor winners single with its verse building up to a big chorus – In Melfest though, it should stand out.
Score: 7/10

Renaida – “All The Feels”

Nick: Compliments for her choice of colours. It’s very current, but at the same time also sounds like a song that comes fifth in a semi. Or sixth.
Score: 5.5/10
Tim: This is very current, it sounds like something that is currently in the charts, she gives it all in the sneak peek of the performance, she might just be the underdog of this Deltavling, maybe the whole competition.
Score: 8/10
Sami: There are so many songs with similar vibe and sound in the national selections in all over the Europe and this is not the best one of them. I did like it the first time I listened to it, but I don’t know if it would stand out enough from the 26 songs in the final for example.
Score: 6/10
Dan: Not only was this given a very good draw, its a great contrast to the songs heard so far. Catchy verses which build up to an anthemic chorus. Not sure if this is strong enough to reach the final but I’m hopinh Renaida makes it through to Andra Chansen.
Score: 6.5/10

Edward Blom – “Livet På En Pinne”

Nick: I love a good bit of humour. And no, this won’t win Melodifestivalen. But it’s definitely making either AC or the final directly. We need this to break up all those credible pop wannabes. You need to value this for what it is. Don’t compare this to Benjamin or whichever other act. Does he achieve his goal of being funny? Yes, he does. 
Score: 8.5/10
Tim: Very comedic, as usual, and he shows this in what is available. 5th Place at the best, I’ll be very shocked if this even gets through to AC.
Score: 4/10
Sami: Swedes probably love this as it’s silly and sweet, but I just always get annoyed when there is a song in some selection which doesn’t have any chance at winning but still for some reason it takes a spot from someone else in the final.
Score: 1/10
Dan: Yes… erm no. This is the type of gimmicky song that I try to steer clear of, in any national final. Sounding and looking very much like a Kids TV theme tune, so I hope this doesn’t progress further.
Score: 1/10

Kikki Danielsson – “Osby Tennessee”

Nick: Kikki is lovely, country music is lovely and she lives this song. I need ‘Osby Tennessee’ in my life. I will be crushed when this, inevitably, finishes last.
Score: 10/10
Tim: Kiki is a very experience performer. Personally I like this song, but I am just a bit concerned that it might not connect with the swedish public. Who knows, she might pull an Owe and qualify.
Score: 5/10
Sami: It’s so nice to hear something else than schlager from Kikki and I know the song has a special meaning for her. The song is very different from what I listen to and I probably never will listen to this song again though. And should we all know that this will come last in the semifinal.
Score: 2/10
Dan: Kikki is no stranger to Melodifestivalen, having entered countless times in the past. Shes back with ‘Osby Tennessse’ and honestly, I’m not won over, very very bland.
Score: 2/10

Kamferdrops – “Solen Lever Kvar Hos Dig”

Nick: It’s just a bit tame for someone who’s so out there with her appearance. I quite like it, though, but it’s more of a radio thing. You can hear 2009 through this! Not sure why she feels the need to do a magic trick on stage… Never works well, ask Daria Kinzer and Soraya. Bonus for the sax solo! Still, glad they didn’t disqualify her.
Score: 9/10
Tim: It obviously shows that she is Sweden’s Sia in this song and the performance and she shows off her vocals, I don’t get the performance though, looks like we’ll have to wait and see.
Score: 6/10
Sami: I was so disappointed when I heard this the first time. Mid-tempo song and performance with unnecessary magic tricks. There is nothing distinctive here. Boring.
Score: 3/10
Dan: The third song this week performed entirely in Swedish and without a doubt the best of the three. Very catchy melody with the inclusion of a trumpet, which always gets a thumbs up from me. I’m hoping this progresses to at least Andra Chansen!
Score: 6.5/10

Benjamin Ingrosso – “Dance You Off”

Nick: Now, like the song or not, this is a contender to win Melfest. It’s so similar to what Bengtsson did last year: The song is decent enough, but the performance makes this to what it is. He’s more likeable than Bengtsson though. It’s going through to the final, that’s a given.
Score: 7/10
Tim: It’s a bop!! He’s like an up and coming Justin Timberlake in this track, and the sneak peek of the performance does not fail to live up, which shows he has put in a lot of work. He will definitely be DTF.
Score: 9/10
Sami: Benjamin obviously has the best performance and the song is good enough. It’s not a winning song and I’m guessing it won’t do that well in the final either. I liked it much more on first listen than ”Good Lovin’” though.
Score: 8/10
Dan: Yes it does sound like something Bieber would release but given his chart success, surely has to be a winning formula. This is miles better than the song he participated with last year. Very funky, catchy and no doubt will appeal to a wide audience. One of the best this week.
Score: 7/10

Who do we want?

The XTRA Jury, this time consisting of Nick, Tim, Sami and Dan has spoken. Below you can see the average each song achieved. Their favourite for tomorrow’s show is Benjamin Ingrosso’s “Dance You Off”!

  1. Benjamin Ingrosso – Dance You Off: 7.8
  2. Renaida – All The Feels: 6.5
  3. John Lundvik – My Turn: 6.5
  4. Kamferdrops – Solen Lever Kvar Hos Dig: 6.1
  5. Sigrid Bernson – Patrick Swayze: 5.0
  6. Kikki Danielsson – Osby Tennessee: 4.8
  7. Edward Blom – Livet På En Pinne: 3.6

Which of these seven do you like best? Make sure to check out the 2:30 versions on the SVT website here.


Nick van Lith

I'm one of the founding members of ESCXTRA.com. Eleven years after the start, I'm proud to say that I am now the Editor-in-Chief of this wonderful website. When I'm not doing Eurovision stuff, you should be able to find me teaching German to kids... And cheering on everything and everyone Greek, pretty much. Pame Ellada!

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