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Saturday, 09 February 2013 05:25

Norway: MGP 2013 Comes to a Close Tonight

Tonight! Scandinavia will be rocking the world of the Eurovision Song Contest considering that another two selections from the region will be taking place leaving Sweden as the sole participating nation from the area which will leave their selection to a later date considering that their second semi-final will be taking place this evening. Norway, will be hoping to turn their recent run of unsuccessful results around by virtue of appointing a new Melodi Grand Prix coordinator and thus, Head of Delegation in the form of Vivi Stenberg who has brought in fresh new talent towards the showcase.

The tracks that have competed in the Melodi Grand Prix through the years have achieved notable success in the charts and thus have sold hundreds and thousands of copies, especially the songs which have made it through to the final selection process which is taking place at the Oslo Spektrum Arena this evening. Last year, Norway was represented by Tooji and his track Stay but it failed to pick up the points and thus, the efforts this year were significantly higher and there are a couple of gems competing for the right to represent the Scandinavian nation, winner of the 2009 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest. The singer who achieved such success is back as a songwriter to I'm With You performed by Annsofi who escflashmalta.com interviewed earlier today.

  1. Vidar Busk - Paid My Way
  2. Fjellfolk - Ulvetuva
  3. Adelén - Bombo
  4. Gromth feat. Emil Solli-Tangen - Alone
  5. Gaute Ormåsen - Awake
  6. Lucky Lips - Sweet And Heavy
  7. Datarock - The Underground
  8. Annsofi - I'm With You
  9. Margaret Berger - Feed You My Love
  10. Sirkus Eliassen - I Love You Te Quiero

This evenings' Melodi Grand Prix which will also be shown through the official website of the Eurovision Song Contest will be receiving a LIVE report on escflashmalta.com with Marc Calleja Bayliss taking on the role having followed all of the evolvments in the semi-final stage of the competition. Special guests for the evening have also been confirmed by NRK to be in the form of Tooji who did the honour of representing Norway in Baku, Azerbaijan at least managing to qualify, something that Haba Haba and Stella Mwangi couldn't in the previous year and the 2012 winner of the Eurovision Song Contest, Loreen. Like Finland, Norway will be competing in the first semi-final alongside Malta but nevertheless, they will be doing so within the second part of the show. Stay tuned for more news.

Source: NRK, Eurovision.tv

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZaxIY1VAbM

Sunday, 25 November 2012 15:00

Sweden: 'Heal' by Loreen - A Review

The dawn of a brand new year is not too far away and one of the key projects which we intend to relaunch as we brace ourselves for the upcoming edition of the Eurovision Song Contest which will surely be preceded by an intriguing season is a set of album reviews as released by artists who have already been to the Eurovision Song Contest and have continuously achieved success on home turf and surrounding countries. For this feature, we have secured the professional writing skills of singer/songwriter Jean Claude Vancell who is quite busy at the moment preparing for a number of events in the industry. Nevertheless, you will be seeing more of these articles as the weeks go by and as a matter of fact, what better way to kick off than with the collection entitled Heal which is of course, the debut album released by Loreen, this years' winner of the Eurovision Song Contest.

Artist: Loreen

Forget the flashy costumes, the over-the-top hair dos and the army of dancers. Loreen is here. As she has proven during this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, the singer does not need anything else but her own voice and a good song to take over Europe. Loreen is a 29-year-old Swedish pop singer and music producer. She started off her musical career by appearing on Swedish Idol in 2004 and placing 4th. She resurfaced in 2011 when she took part in the Swedish selection for Eurovision with My Heart is Refusing Me (a track now part of the album).

She failed to make it through the final, but returned next year with her track Euphoria, with which she won the Melodifestivalen and later the Eurovision Song Contest in Azerbaijan. She spoke out against the violation of human rights when in Azerbaijan with local political activists saying "Human rights are violated in Azerbaijan every day. One should not be silent about such things." Loreen was the winner of the Best Swedish Act at the MTV European Music Awards 2012. She was also nominated for Best European Act which she lost to Dima Bilan (The winner of the 2008 Eurovision Song Contest).

Album Title: Heal

Released: 22nd October (Europe)

Heal is published by Warner Music, Sweden, and is Loreen’s debut album. Recorded over two years (between 2010 and 2012), it showcases Loreen as an up and coming artist in the European charts after her victory for Sweden at the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest. It was released as already mentioned above on the 22 October. The recurring theme throughout the album is breaking-up and finding strength in oneself. The production of the album has a heavy dance feel to it, which is currently very popular in Europe. The tracks have very intricate beats and harsh synths.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jmzs5r1flBA

The presence of an orchestra in some of the tracks in the album enhances and softens the song production in songs such as Euphoria and Sober. Loreen had a significant role as a songwriter in the album, penning tracks such as In My Head, My Heart is Refusing Me and Sober. The album has performed well in the charts reaching the top twenty in six countries and peaking at number 1 in her home country, Sweden, where it has also been certified platinum. It has been released in Sweden, Ireland, Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, United Kingdom, Canada, Mexico, France and Japan.

Tracks to look out for:

In my head – An amazing opening to the album. I especially love the piano solo in the track. Loreen shows a subtler vocal dynamic than in the rest of the album. I liked the gentler tone of her voice on this one.

My heart is refusing me – Loreen has participated in Melodifestivalen in 2011 with this track, which has now been reworked for the album. I really like the new remix. I am amazed how this did not do well in the competition. A real bass-thumper with a great melody line.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pfo-8z86x80

Euphoria – We've heard it endless times before. On the album the track is introduced with a beautiful arrangement for strings which contrasts well with the strong sounds in the record. Her vocal rendition is impeccable, even though I do have to admit that I enjoy her live interpretation so much more.

Crying out your name – This, in my opinion, is the stronghold of this album. Lyrically it strikes a chord with me. Overall it is a very well written song. The production is nothing short of amazing with a beat reminiscent of dub-step in the beginning.

Final Verdict:

I never expected myself to enjoy this album so much. I do not usually enjoy listening to Euro-dance but Loreen has found the right balance between pop and dance in her record. This will definitely not be leaving my iTunes playlist for a very long time. If Loreen works hard enough to promote this, we’ll keep hearing of her well into the future, something which can’t be said about all winners of Eurovision.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BPt21Lq-hbY

Published in Editorials
Saturday, 17 November 2012 16:31

Sweden: Debut Album by Loreen Hailed a Success

At one point in time, credibility was somewhat the issue with the Eurovision Song Contest but leading record labels from all over the world have been showing interest in a number of performers who have made it to the continental competition especially those which have succeeded in terms of public opinion. One of the foremost performers is surely the winner of this years' extravaganza, Loreen whose entry Euphoria catapulted her to success in her native Sweden, surrounding countries and even beyond. Warner Music Sweden was the company to literally gobble her up when the opportunity came about and in fact, they have just worked together on producing a fine, modern album which has received rave reviews and positive sales across the board. 

Euphoria was a major success all over the continent managing to top the charts is no less than nine countries including Sweden, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Norway and Switzerland whilst also managing top three positions in The Netherlands, Spain and the United Kingdom amongst others. The debut album which bears the name Heal was officially released on the 22nd October but following a bout of promotional performances by the artist herself in a number of nations, it is seeing a surge in sales thus rising to number #1 in Sweden, #6 in Finland, #6 in Norway  #7 in Switzerland, #12 in Denmark, #16 in Germany and #16 in The Netherlands. This trend is continuing and is expected to last quite a while longer. Sweden are currently preparing to host the 2013 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest but this years' edition will always be known as the birth of a true star. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: Warner Music Sweden

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vvG_hN9bHzQ

Since winning this years' edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, Loreen has emerged as a true artist and someone who surely has a long standing career by the looks of it having been jetting all over the continent giving performances of all three major singles, those being of course; EuphoriaMy Heart Is Refusing Me and Crying Out Your Name. It has to be noted that the latter two have just been released in two different territories with the artist or rather Warner Music Sweden deciding to promote two tracks at the very same time in different countries. In the past couple of days, she was in Scandinavia performing on a number of talent shows but nevertheless, the biggest performance surely came at the grand opening of the Friends Arena which will be hosting the 2013 edition of the Melodifestivalen and was also considered for the Eurovision Song Contest but then deemed far too big by the European Broadcasting Union and also the Swedish broadcaster; SVT who will be responsible for the overall hosting of the showcase.

It seems that the decision to host in Malmo within a smaller arena was an extremely good one from the acoustics we are gathering from Loreen's performance which as always included plenty of drama. The stage was surrounded by pure emptiness and the people were too far away. The setup of the lighting and the projections was astonishing though and there will be some amendments made to make sure that the final of the 2013 Melodifestivalen will be accommodated better. Still, Loreen's brand new single in Scandinavia being Crying Out Your Name is receiving a lot of promotion with the performer being a guest on the X Factor shown TV4 in recent days and also at the respective opening. Following an opening on the charts at number #42, it has already risen to number #29 and wish such a heavy schedule being put forward, it will surely go even higher. The release of the single of course precedes the album which was also out this week and will thus be receiving a chart placing in just a matter of hours. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for more news about winners of the Eurovision Song Contest whilst we urge you to watch the performance below in the meantime.

Source: Warner Music Sweden

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GtyZCnzxQZM

Saturday, 06 October 2012 13:14

Sweden: Loreen Releases New Material

Loreen, the winner of the 2012 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is preparing the release of two new singles to the music industry, one entitled Crying Out Your Name written in a collaboration between Niklas Jarl, Ana Diaz and Moh Denebi, the first out of which is known for co-writing the Irish entry Waterline at this years' edition of the prestigious music event held in Baku, Azerbaijan; with the second one bearing the title My Heart if Refusing Me which was of course her Melodifestivalen entry in 2011 failing to make it through to the final stages of the Melodifestivalen despite being a huge fan favourite.

On Monday, 8th October, both singles will be released respectively to radio and also digital outlets in the Scandinavian countries for the latter and then in other European countries for the former. The album which has been given the name Heal will surely be one to watch out for in the coming weeks with Loreen working with some of the most prolific songwriters in Scandinavia to make sure that her sound remains authentic. The release date is planned for the 24th October through Warner Music Sweden. Following the huge success of Euphoria throughout the summer, there are a number of huge things expected for the shy and somewhat reserved Swedish performer. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news as soon as it becomes available.
 

Tuesday, 24 July 2012 17:20

Malta: Loreen Ready for Concert Tomorrow

Winners of the Eurovision Song Contest tend to give a number of performances across Europe following their respective victories but then again, this is the first time in quite some time that this will be taking place noting that this years' winner Loreen had made her way into the Malta International Airport ahead of her concert tomorrow. She was welcomed by a number of fans as well as the organizer Antonella Vassallo who hosted the Malta Song for Europe back in 2001 alongside Claire Fabri and Louise Tedesco. There has been a lot of hype around the concert which is being backed by none other than a variety of companies including 89.7 Bay and their frontman Nathan D who will be hosting the evening. In an impromptu press conference given just after having arrived, Loreen stated that she is set to perform about six (6) songs including her previous effort for the Melodifestivalen entitled My Heart is Refusing Me and of course, her Eurovision winning entry Euphoria.

The setup at the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre in Ta' Qali will be different noting that the inside of the event will not be used as seen within the annual Malta Eurovision Song Contest with the outskirts being used as seen within the Zucchero concert which was also organized by Antonella Vassallo on behalf of Stand Out Events. Taking to the stage as the main guest alongside Loreen tomorrow night will be none other than the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest representative Kurt Calleja who will surely be performing his two hit songs Over and Over and This Is The Night but there will be other performances during the night including those by Brooke who will surely be performing her latest song Fairytale and the internationally renowned dance group Tenishia who have just released their debut album with Armada Music, which is one of the leading companies in contemporary dance music. If you still would like to acquire tickets for the event, make sure to visit www.ticketline.com.mt and obtain your very own tickets. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news as soon as it becomes available. 

Source: Times of Malta, Stand Out Events

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dny9HrxPsEY

Sunday, 15 July 2012 15:30

Sweden: Loreen Performs for Royalty

SVT, the Swedish broadcaster responsible for hosting the 2013 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest are set to be delighted at this prospect and it would not have been possible without Loreen whose iconic Euphoria has become a huge hit all over the continent with clubs, radio and general events playing it round the clock. Nevertheless, the artist herself has become an icon in her native Sweden and is therefore being invited to every show possible in the country noting that her most recent performance came in front of the Swedish Royal Family who are set to be great fans of Loreen.

The Crown Princess along with her husband were present with the senior members of the Royal Family and such a performance opportunity could have definitely not been turned down. Loreen herself was wearing a white dress which was covered by a black leather jacket. She was given the opportunity to perform two (2) songs in total and she decided to do last years' Melodifestivalen entry entitled My Heart Is Refusing Me which did not manage to qualify to the finals of the local competition as well as the winning entry of the Eurovision Song Contest entitled Euphoria. She continues to grow in popularity, prowess and confidence with every performance that she gives and it shows that she will always be remembered as one of the leading artists in Sweden as is the case for Abba, The Herreys, Carola and Charlotte, the four previous winners. The 2013 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest will be hosted in the city of Malmo, which also hosted the 1992 edition.

Source: Scandipop.co.uk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQMziaKWgR4

Thursday, 05 July 2012 07:50

Sweden: Video for Euphoria Released

Sweden does tend to take their participation in the Eurovision Song Contest seriously especially due to the fact that the representative is normally one of the upcoming or notable names in the country and thus signed to a major music label. Nevertheless, the music video to their entries has normally been recorded late on several occasions with the preview shows across the board showing the performance of the national final instead. Loreen was the sheer favourite this time round and when Euphoria picked up top honours, Warner Music Sweden wanted to make sure that promotion was done right and started working on a conceptual idea for a music video.

We have seen the video along with the extended version of the song as published by leading Swedish tabloid Expressen and one has to say that it reflects the artist more than it speaks about the song in general. Throughout her stay at the Eurovision Song Contest, Loreen was seen to be that type of mysterious figure who seems quite shy in front of the cameras when it comes to an interview but nevertheless, that sort of quirky character made it more interesting when she ended up being the winner. In the music video, the setting is a field along with terrible weather conditions which alternate from rain to sun and then finally snow keeping the effect as used in Baku, Azerbaijan. Nevertheless, her long stares at nothing and editing has made this track look visually stunning once more. The track has become one of the most successful winners of the Eurovision Song Contest in history.

Source: Expressen

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcnWysA9gxo

The 2012 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest came to an end just a couple of weeks ago with Loreen from Sweden and the track Euphoria winning convincingly with the second largest score in history, only somewhat outdone by Fairytale performed by Alexander Rybak on behalf of Norway. Following the victory, promotion has been key noting that Warner Music Sweden has released the track digitally all across the continent, topping the charts in Austria, Belgium (Flanders), Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Norway, Sweden, and Switzerland whilst also managing top five in Australia, Israel, The Netherlands, Moldova, Romania, Spain, and the United Kingdom. One of the means of promotion is definitely a music video and that is why, it has been recorded and is now ready to be released.

The music video to the track Euphoria will officially premiere on Thursday, 5th July at 10:00 CET. There is a lot of speculation over the scenery of the video noting that it has been shot mostly outside. Here in Malta, there is quite a lot of interest in the track especially having led the iTunes chart for a considerably long time before an announcement late last week which basically noted that Loreen will be giving a concert in Malta on the 25th July supported by the likes of Kurt Calleja, Tenishia, DJ Ruby and Brooke. The event is being organised by Stand Out Events and you can purchase your tickets starting at €25 through this website. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com more information about this years' winner of the Eurovision Song Contest as soon as it becomes available.

Source: Warner Music Sweden

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pfo-8z86x80

Wednesday, 27 June 2012 14:45

Malta: Loreen is Making a Promotional Visit

Euphoria was the winner of this years' edition of the Eurovision Song Contest and the track seems to be very much popular across Europe due to the fact that Loreen is jetting over to a number of countries making appearances on behalf of promotion noting that her debut album will be out in the next couple of months. It has just been revealed by our friends at esctoday.com that she will be stopping in Malta later on this year, presumbaly on the 25th July for a special performance which is set to last about half an hour. This is quite an interesting venture especially when the track is being heavily played in all of the leading clubs in Paceville apart from receiving countless airplay on the radio.

Nevertheless, it seems that the concert which is being organized by Stand Out Events known for bringing about Italian sensation Zucchero last year, will also include the Maltese representative at the Eurovision Song Contest especially due to the ambient of the show. Kurt was one of the two artists to have opened for the Italian legend last year and therefore, it was an easy decision to include him in the proceedings. The show will be taking place at the Malta Fairs and Convention Centre in Ta' Qali and more details will be revealed this Tuesday in a special press conference. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news especially as this story unravels. 

Source: esctoday

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GqYtlpZ-9N4

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