2016 Reviews – Cyprus – Minus One – Alter Ego

At the start of the national final season, there was nothing that hit me as winning material, nothing really hit me at all as a really great song (since then, some songs have grown on me). Along came Cyprus with a band I was very happy to see returning, this time to Eurovision, after last time missing out in the national final. Minus One is the band, and the song is called Alter Ego, and was a collaboration with Eurovision master Thomas G:son and the band. The result of this collaboration is far beyond what I expected, and I expected big things to begin with.

The song has a punchy start, and already shows signs of a rock song intertwined with some pop elements, which is perfect for Eurovision. When I first heard it, I immediately played it over and over – the melody stuck in my head immediately, and it was easy to follow along with the song. The bridge gives us a short break from what is a very intense 3 minutes, but then we hear the last chorus, which for me, leaves me wanting to click replay.

Historically, rock hasn’t been the most successful genre, but it had its moment after Lordi won back in 2006. This song is a more modern reinvigoration of the rock genre, and compared to their entry in the national final last year, Shine, this song has a bit more pop to it, which gives them the best chance for a great result in a predominately pop-filled contest. I think there is a great chance for this to be proof that rock music can be successful in Eurovision once again.

I found the first few live performances to be a bit shaky, but I think they will bring everything to Stockholm and give it their best performance yet. It will be interesting to see what effects they use on stage – this is the type of song that could use a smoke machine, or pyrotechnics, and I think this would add to the performance, so we’ll have to see what they choose to do. Literally the only criticism, and it’s miniscule, is that I think they need to engage more with audiences to get them really pumped up, and make sure they’re using all the cameras to their advantage, as it’s not just a live audience their performing to, it’s millions of tv viewers who want to feel a part of the performance as well, even at home.

Overall, this song will always have my top spot for 2016. From first listen I was completely in love. This makes for one of the first times in recent history where I’ve completely supported Cyprus (one of my countries of heritage, just for a bit of context). I can’t wait to see how it goes down in Stockholm, and I hope that we see this in the final so I can vote for it!

I’m giving it a 10/10. No surprises there!

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