Lisbon 2018

It’s playtime! Netta Barzilai drops her entry “Toy”

Ho ho ho! Merry…mid march? I hope you have all been good boys and girls. Christmas has arrived early with Netta Barzilai dropping a present for us all on youtube. Her song was already topping the odds earlier today even before the official release. Now, Fresh out of the factory, the wonderfully crazy video for “Toy” is waiting for you to press play.

Trust us, you are NOT prepared for what you are about to experience. The lyrics send a strong message of female empowerment and not letting yourself be treated like a toy (you stupid boy). There’s a direct connection to the #MeToo campaign, while also throwing in plenty of playful references and having Netta impersonate a chicken. Yes, you read that correctly!

Forget everything you know about genres, this song cares not for such trivial matters. This song fuses together contemporary Pop, K-pop and Hip-hop with the contagious Middle Eastern sound & beat. And that part about the chicken I mentioned earlier? That would be the added touch of Mizrahi singing. It’s fresh, it’s upbeat, it’s weird and wonderful. She’s bringing the party to Lisbon so join in:

The incredible video video-clip you see above was directed by one of Israel’s leading producers, Keren Hochma. The focus is on Netta, showing her as strong, independent and full of style.

Rewind a bit. The who, the what, the where?

Grab a chair and have a seat, this will be a long one. Israel has been using the singing competition HaKokhav HaBa L’Eurovizion (or “The Next Star For Eurovision” for the less tongue-twistery version) to pick their eurovision entry for three years now.

The seach for this year’s candidate started way back in October 2017. About a hundred people auditioned and sang various cover versions of Despacito (and other song, but who cares about those) across 20 shows in 5 months. It was clear from the beginning, however, that there was one rising star in the competition and her name was Netta Barzilai. The 25-year-old singer brought a powerful voice, a magnetic personality and a unique talent for mastering her trademark looper

Round after round, week after week, Netta continued using her looper to turn her voice into an even more impressive instrument, while mixing songs that were never meant to go together. She made it all work beautifully, leaving both the audience and the judges watching her with their mouths open.

Obviously this journey could only end in one way and that was with confetti raining down on her as she was declared the winner of HaKokhav HaBa L’Eurovizion 2018 (try saying that fast 5 times in a row). She is now ready to delivers a fresh and contemporary combination of sounds and influences to the Eurovision Stage.

You wouldn’t be trying to sell me a bootleg here, would you?

Who, me? Never! This is the real deal. Israel went back to what worked best and called Doron Medalie. If that name doesn’t ring a bell, then two recent Israeli entries “Made of Stars” and the “Golden Boy” certainly should. Doron was the author of both, bringing Israel out of their unlucky non-qualification streak and back singing, dancing and gyroing into the final.

This wasn’t some quick “dig through my old drawers” case either. “Toy” was specifically written for Netta and her creative ability to morph her voice into basically anything. And yes, Netta has got full permission to use her looper, so expect her to take her contraption to Lisbon and get things going with just the press of a button.

Her entry is a co-production of production house “Tedy Productions”, the Israeli Public Broadcasting Corporation “Kan” and “Keshet12″, the country’s leading commercial broadcast television channel.

You know the drill! Tell us what you think of Netta’s song. Is it high in your rankings? Has she lain a golden egg that can win? Cluck cluck cluck?

Let us know in the comments below and on social media @ESCXTRA!

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Rigmo Kannike

When not busy haunting various online chat rooms as his criminal alter ego, PeterP, Rigmo enjoys long walks on the beach and rooting for the absolute worst national final songs.

4 Comments

  1. It is ironic you used the picture of the judges at Rising Star that you did because Ben on the right was ALWAYS anti-looper and only voted for Netta when she used it minimally. And she only just made it into the final three of the SuperFinal there…

    “Toy” is not using the looper that much at all, compared to some of the songs she covered in Israel and I am suspect that ‘using the looper’ as far as the EBU is concerned will be ‘prepare all of the music on a backing track and mime using the looper’. If she is allowed to use the looper live, I would expect every other musician who has an instrument to play (that would be Albania, Switzerland, Poland, Ukraine, Serbia, Hungary, France, Romania, The Netherlands, FYR Macedonia, Ireland, Georgia and possibly Bulgaria too) to demand that they can play their instruments live as well. At this late stage, that isn’t going to happen – will the EBU really let one artist play their ‘instrument’ live and not allow the others to?

    Don’t get me wrong, Netta was a dream and gave a superb show – she is also a great vocalist and really doesn’t need the looper (if you watch her other material online). I would be intrigued to see her operate her looper live in Lisbon but I’m not sure that it will be used the way everybody thinks it is going to be…

  2. Well honey ,keep drinking whatever you are drinkning and let us drink that tea and ENJOY It cause this one is fun,happy,strong, intelligent,amazing , different in your face.

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