The country that terrorized the world during the late 90s with Helmut Lotti goes Classic I, II, III and Final Edition (holy crap, enough already!) decided to treat us to another round, meet Axel Hirsoux!
They shouldn’t have bothered. Really. Because apart from the highly questionable lyrics, no one in their right mind can claim Belgium’s entry this year is high quality music. Perhaps it’s an entry most people will like, and it might end up doing quite well in ESC. But who said most people have good taste? Heck, most people eat crappy food, watch trashy reality shows on TV, go on vacation to Costa del Ingles and buy Helmut Lotti cd’s off discount racks in gasoline stations.
It’s pretty obvious what Axel is aiming for here, but unfortunately he fails miserably. By trying too hard to be that grandiose crooner, but without having the proper confidence, the undefined star quality or the exceptional talent, his performance falls flat on the ground leaving us stone cold. Banal and simple can be extremely effective when done in a clever way, but both the song and the performance lack the refinement to make it interesting. More is definitely not more in this case. We don’t think he sings particularly well either, and find his voice to be forced and lacking the depth that at least could have added some soul.
It’s bound to be compared with Norway’s balladeer Carl Espen, and with running the risk of sounding patriotic we predict that Mother will be completely upstaged by Silent Storm. At least we hope the viewers around Europe will prefer beautiful, poetic lyrics, bursting with restrained emotions, performed with sincerity and control over a Belgian bloke waving his arms and yammering on about how much he loves his mummy.
I’ve got a things about omens and there’s one linked to this song – Sunday 11th May is Mother’s Day throughout most of Europe…will this encourage voters to pick up the phone? I’ve just got this feeling that this will do better than most people think it will.
Oh dear, we hope your hunch is wrong. The question is whether Axel will make it as far as the Saturday show.