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XTRA Preview & Review: O Melodie Pentru Europa

The national final season is definitely in full swing. Tonight, O Melodie Pentru Europa is going to take place and is one of the SEVEN national finals on tonight. We’ve taken a look at the entries and the procedure below, so here is the XTRA Preview & Review!

XTRA Preview:  O Melodie Pentru Europa

Moldova will once again use its national selection show O Melodie Pentru Europa. The original plan was to have a Semi-Final for the competing entries. However, this was scrapped last month, where it was decided that it would only have a Grand Final.

16 songs will be taking part tonight. The Moldovan audience will be given a chance to vote for their favorite act. Their votes will then be combined with a Jury vote. Whichever act receive the most votes from both the televote and jury will be crowned the winner.

We will be tweeting live at @ESCXTRA on Twitter, so make sure you keep an eye out and interact!

XTRA Review:  O Melodie Pentru Europa

Anna Obodescu – Agony

Tim:  It’s like a pop rock version of Quedate Conmigo. But like the title of the song, it’s an Agony for me to listen to this, just a tiny bit.
Score: 5/10

Miki: I don’t really like how the purpose of the song is to show off Anna’s vocals only. Every single line drags into a high note and the whole song sounds like a shouting match. This truly makes me feel the agony tho, so I guess it achieves what it should.
Score: 3/10

Riccardo: Again an intro that gives me hope that quickly fades away, killed by the lyrics especially. I love her vocals but towards the end I feel they try too hard to cover the fact that this is a mediocre song at best.
Score: 5/10

Angelos: This song has got some potential with a different orchestration, but in its current version it’s comme ci comme ca. It takes a while to get a grip of it.
Score: 5,5/10

Anna Timofei – Endlessly

Tim: This song is like a fairytale if it is based on the studio version, hands down I would send this, I’m just worried if she can do the same live, I hope she can cos I am in love with this song.
Score: 7.5/10

Miki: This is very decent and modern sounding. The only thing I don’t like is how the title of the song is incorporated in the lyrics. It makes the whole package weaker and amateurish sounding. With that being said, I really don’t mind this.
Score: 6.5/10

Riccardo: Finally an intro that makes me hopeful and lasts for the whole song. What a beautiful melody and powerful vocals. I can see this work very well on a big stage and like Tim hope she delivers live.
Score: 8.5/10

Angelos: Lovely vocals in a Sara Brightman kinda way. Fairytale-ish, but not sure how well this would stand out in Eurovision. I hope she can deliver live.
Score: 6,5/10

Bella Luna – Moments

Tim: It is very nostalgic, it is like your Mum and Dad went on to the local karaoke one night, so I find this very cheesy but very heart-warming.
Score: 5/10

Miki: I am sorry but this is such a 90’s cheesy ballad. Plus the verses transition into the chorus in such a disturbingly cheesy way. This is very much a filler song in the lineup.
Score: 2/10

Riccardo: Very sweet and gentle song, though a little too cheesy and dated for my taste. It also fails to properly build and remains mostly flat for the whole duration.
Score: 4/10

Angelos: This duet sounds a bit.. Maltese somehow. Very 90’s romantic ballad, cheesy especially with the keychange towards the end,  but not bad.
Score: 5,5/10

Che-MD – Inima-n-Stinga

Tim: It is a real rock song, and it really shows by how heavy the instruments are on the track and how the vocals are on the track. However, this is not a rock track that has captivated me this time.
Score: 4/10

Miki: This is a mix of ethnic vibes and classic rock, plus is sung in Romanian which I appreciate. I wouldn’t say that this song is the worst one in this lineup, but somehow I fail to connect with it.
Score: 5.5/10

Riccardo: I’m not the biggest rock music fan and this piece fails to impress me and after a while, I get really bored of it. However,  I do enjoy the fact that it is sung in Moldovan and I quite enjoy some instrumental bits.
Score: 4.5/10

Angelos: This song is far from my own musical taste, but there are some instrumental parts I enjoy that add some nice flavor to this song. Also, this stands out from the rest being sung in Romanian.
Score: 7/10

Constantin Cobilean – Numai Tu

Tim: The song is too generic for my liking if I’m being honest. But I got easily bored of this and I would be really surprised if this gets to the Final.
Score: 5/10

Miki: Alright, the studio version of this sounds like the vocals are isolated from the instrumental. I don’t really dislike it, but I am not really a fan of it (despite liking rock music).
Score: 5/10

Riccardo: I enjoy the instrumentation in this song and I quite like his voice too, but I get bored of it after a while.
Score: 6/10

Angelos: Generic and boring rocky song, again this could have sounded better with a fresher orchestration and vocals.
Score: 4/10

Doinita Gherman – Dance in Flames

Tim: This very much feel like the early 00’s, I like the blend of languages as it makes it distinct, but it didn’t captivate me as much.
Score: 5/10

Miki: Yes, this is something suited for the televote dark ages of Eurovision. I am almost tempted to say that seeing this type of a song at Eurovision would be kinda refreshing but I’m not going to. In addition to that, the lyrics are so cheesy and I just cannot take this one seriously.
Score: 4/10

Riccardo: Feels dated and not original at all and I feel like I heard this so many times before. I like the change of language and enjoy the instrumentation a fair bit, but not enough to make me like the song.
Score: 5/10

Angelos: Very heard before, but this would be nice to dance to on the Euroclub. It’s catchy and fun. Somehow it feels like this song would fit Luminita Angel quite well.
Score: 7,5/10

DoReDos – My Lucky Day

Tim:  Now this is very upbeat!, very ethnic but very modern at the same time, looks like Kirkorov made the right decision to work with these guys as this song is very awesome and I can see myself dancing to this in Lisbon.
Score: 9/10

Miki: The “everything but the kitchen sink” song in the lineup from the self proclaimed “dream team”. It’s ethnic, It’s upbeat and apparently it’s 2005. The lyrics could have had more meaning if a three year old wrote them.
Score: 2/10

Riccardo: When I saw that Kirkorov was involved in this, my expectations were very high and they weren’t quite met when I heard this entry. It’s nice, don’t get me wrong, but definitely not my favorite. I do think it could good look in Lisbon with some dancers and good moves, however.
Score: 6.5/10

Angelos: This is catchy but feels VERY dated and not in a good way. Probably the winner, so I will have to live with this. At least it’s fun and we need some fun songs this year.
Score: 6/10

Felicia Dunaf – Alien

Tim: Where have I heard that beat before? It is a nice song, and she makes it current. But I don’t think this is for Eurovision.
Score: 5/10

Miki: The production of this sounds current yet dated, which I kinda like. However, the lyrics really kill this one. At times it feels like the there are too many words and she’s trying to catch up. With that being said, this is not bad at all.
Score: 6/10

Riccardo: Oh I like this! So catchy, current and memorable. Strange lyrics at times but oh well! If she delivers like in the studio version I can see this really stand out.
Score: 8.5/10

Angelos: Oh I like this one. Upbeat, catchy, poppy in a “say yay” kinda way and quite good vocals. Strange lyrics though to take it seriously?
Score: 8/10

Ilia Sorocean & Dasha DaGro – Minds & Veins

Tim: Is it just me or does he sound a bit like Sebalter? But I don’t mind that, I like the beat and I like how polished this is, it’s that good that I can already imagine how this is going to be staged if this wins on Saturday.
Score: 8/10

Miki: Despite the title being a bit strange and off-putting, I’d say that this one seems like the most well put together tune in the lineup. It won’t be my favorite song at Eurovision, but I would certainly not skip it on my playlist.
Score: 7/10 

Riccardo: Very nice beat! Fresh and modern entry. I think they complement each other very well and while it gets a little repetitive, I still enjoy it very much.
Score: 8/10

Angelos: Nice entry and I wouldn’t mind this as the Moldovan entry. This needs a good stage performance and it should do fine.
Score: 8/10

Lavinia Rusu – Altundeva

Tim: I hate that it’s such a nice track, but it’s mostly consistent and does not build up or captivate me or anything. This could have done very well. If it does end up going to Lisbon, please revamp this song like your life depends on it.
Score: 5/10

Miki: This isn’t horrible or even bad, but I would agree that it feels kinda empty and flat. After listening to this a couple of times, I kinda started humming it but I’m afraid this isn’t instant enough.
Score: 5/10

Riccardo: A nice entry that however never really builds and remains mostly flat. I like her vocals but I just wished it had a more climatic/powerful build-up. Pity because it could do well.
Score: 5.5/10

Angelos:  The Romanian language sounds very beautiful when sung, as is the case here. The song however, although it got potential, it falls flat having a weak chorus. Otherwise quite nice.
Score: 6,5/10

Nicoleta Sava – Esencia del Sur

Tim: It is Pop with Latin influence. There is such a sudden surge with these on the NF’s and I cannot explain why.  It is  a little bit trashy for my taste if I am being honest, and it causes a bit of a headache.
Score: 4/10

Miki: Moldova’s take on the Despacito craze worldwide. “Esencia del Sur” sounds like Croatia’s “Maria Magdalena” went on the beach with a bottle of tequila. But yes, It’s at least ….. fun, I guess.
Score: 5.5/10

Riccardo: What’s with all these Latin pop songs? Despacito effect? Nice upbeat tempo for sure, but I find it too repetitive and doesn’t build up enough for my taste.
Score: 4.5/10.

Angelos: What would be a national final without a latino/spanish song? Too repetitive and cheap for my liking. But better than most others. Awful Spanish accent though.
Score: 5,5/10.

Ruslan Taranu – Come To Life

Tim: This is very bubblegum pop, very schlager. However, I just do not think this is captivating enough for today’s viewers. I do not see anything interesting towards it.
Score: 4/10

Miki: I’m sorry but ….. NEXT.
Score: 1/10

Riccardo: Yes, it is a little trashy and it would not stand a chance in Lisbon, but I still find this humorous and funny and I don’t actually mind listening to it.
Score: 6/10

Angelos: Dusty 80’s sounding song that wasn’t good enough even as a filler on some album from that decade. Well, it sure fits very in the Moldovan national final.
Score: 1/10

Sandy C & Aaron Sibley – Once Upon a Time

Tim: I love how their voices mesh so well together, and how it builds up as the song goes well. It might sound a bit like Sam Smith’s Stay With Me, but they really make this song their own.
Score: 9/10

Miki: Alright, this sounds polished and beautiful, but I’m think that the duos singing a ballad quota for Eurovision is kinda full already. However, this is good enough to stand on its own and not be compared to other songs just cause two people sing it. I’d say this is the most current sounding tune in Moldova’s selection.
Score: 8.5/10

Riccardo: I get some “stay with me” vibes from this. That piano background is spot on. I am not usually a big fan of slow songs but this ticks all the boxes for me and Sandy and Aaron complement each other so well. My favorite in the selection!
Score: 9/10

Angelos: Hmm not a bad ballad. But the chorus feels too weak and the song never really builds up, which is what I initially was expecting listening to this.
Score: 5/10

Tolik – Broken Glass

Tim: The song is clear and concise, it’s a great song, but it either needs a new singer, or it needs a helluva of a revamp in order to be successful.
Score: 6/10

Miki: This is not horrible, but I really don’t like the lyrics and I do agree that his song doesn’t really complement the song. It’s a decent track nonetheless,
Score: 5/10

Riccardo: I completely agree with Tim. I find this a charming and pleasant song but change the singer, please.
Score: 6.5/10

Angelos: The song is okay, but the singer’s voice ruins it for me, he shouldn’t be singing this.
Score: 6/10

Vera Turcanu – Black Heart

Tim: It’s very calm and dark, if staged well, it might work on the stage. But it depends if the audience will agree with my liking on this.
Score: 7/10

Miki: This is very much a type of song I should like, but I feel that I need a few listens to really get into it. However, I feel that with a subtle and dark staging this one could truly come alive on stage. The only negative I have for it is the fact that I prefer the verses to the chorus (which is somewhat flat).
Score: 7/10

Riccardo: This song has everything I look in a song of its kind: nice intro, a good build-up, a good chorus and good dose of dark vibe. I do think it needs some more adjustments to make it even stronger. That said, I really hope she delivers live as this is a strong entry.
Score: 8/10

Angelos: I like the ‘darkness’ of this song, sounds like something Ukraine could send with some big voice and a fabulous stage performance to lift it. I hope Vera does the same if chosen for Moldova.
Score: 7,5/10

Viorela – The Gates of Love

Tim: She sells this song very well on the studio version. Question is can she execute the same vocals live. If she does then great I think she can do it well, if not, I hope it’s not a screeching pain I hear watching this on TV.
Score: 6/10

Miki: I swear the beginning of this sounds exactly like the Eurovision 2008 theme song. Putting that aside, It’s decent but a bit too flat and we’ve heard this song million times before.
Score: 5/10

Riccardo: I really like the folky, uplifting atmosphere of this entry but it gets a little too cheesy for my taste towards the end.  I’m glad it is in the final, but I don’t think Moldova should choose this.
Score: 6/10

Angelos: It’s okay, but at the same time it feels unfinished. Maybe a different orchestration and vocals would do some wonders for this song. In it’s current form, this goes absolutely nowhere.
Score: 5,5/10

Who do we want?

The XTRA Jury, this time consisting of Tim, Miki, Riccardo, and Angelos has spoken. Below you can see the average each song achieved. Their favorites for O Melodie Pentru Europa are Sandy C & Aaron Sibley with “Once Upon a Time”.

  1. Sandy C & Aaron Sibley – Once Upon a Time 7.9
  2. Ilia Sorocean & Dasha DaGro – Minds & Veins 7.8
  3. Vera Turcanu – Black Heart 7.4
  4. Anna Timofei – Endlessly 7.3
  5. Felicia Dunaf – Alien 6.9
  6. DoReDos – My Lucky Day 5.9
  7. Tolik – Broken Glass 5.6
  8. Lavinia Rusu – Altundeva 5.5
  9. Doinita Gherman – Dance in Flames 5.4
  10. Che-MD – Inima-n-Stinga 5.3
  11. Constantin Cobilean – Numai Tu 5
  12. Anna Obodescu – Agony 4.6
  13. Bella Luna – Moments 4.1
  14. Ruslan Taranu – Come To Life 3

Do you agree with our choice of winner, or would you prefer someone else to take the crown?. Let us know your opinions and thoughts below or at social media @ESCXTRA

Tim Jumawan

I started watching Eurovision ever since I moved to the UK in 2006, obsessed since 2012 and haven't looked back since.
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