Sometimes persistence is key when it comes to Eurovision. There have been countless times where we have seen an artist take part in a national selection, only to fall short but yet return in future years. In some circumstances, it takes years and numerous attempts to reach Eurovision if ever, and for others the road is much less bumpy.
The latter (no, not ladder) is the case for Ukrainian artist Mélovin who we first saw at the Ukrainian national selection in 2017. Fighting for the chance to represent Ukraine on home soil proved to be a tough challenge as the national selection was fairly strong. Throughout the competition, former X Factor participant and fan favourite Melovin was seen as a top competitor, particularly with the televoters – but was their support justified when we take a closer look at his competing entry Wonder?
At the time, I quite enjoyed the studio version of Wonder but I also recognised what was lacking from the song. The song starts off well, with a nice melody backed by piano. We reach the chorus, and it’s also nice, but then you begin to realise that the song is fairly one dimensional. The melody hasn’t been pushed far enough, and neither has the music. The strength of the song could have increased with a punchier backing track, but also the melody needed to break free from being consistently monotone.
Towards the end of the song, Melovin starts to show off his vocal capabilities which although were not as strong as some of his fellow competitors, would have still been strong enough to tackle Eurovision (of which he did just a year later). Although we do start to hear the potential in his voice with a few big notes, it doesn’t detract from the fact that the song is really quite flat for majority of the three minutes.
What the performance would have had going for it had it won Eurovision would have been Melovin’s stage presence and charm. He is quite a curious character and that is easily recognisable by his stage appearance, but he is really likable. Plus, with it being Ukraine, this could have been staged in a spectacular fashion just as Under the Ladder was this year, but it’s fairly safe to say that 2017 was not going to be his time to shine.
Overall I think this is a good song, but doesn’t quite reach the potential it would have needed to achieve a successful result at Eurovision. It’s a song that I would happily listen to, but wouldn’t actively seek out, and for that reason I’ll give it a 7/10.