Montenegro haven’t had the best run at Eurovision since their independent debut back in 2007, however it has made their successes a little sweeter. If they were to qualify this year, it would mark the third time the nation has qualified, with both previous qualifying entries put into the Balkan Ballad category. This year representing Montenegro is the group D-moll (or D mol) with the slightly more upbeat song, Heaven.
Song + Vocals
Having briefly heard all the competing songs of this year’s Montevizija national selection, I was definitely more on team Andrea and was surprised to see that someone other than Andrea had won the selection. Upon first full listen of this song, I wasn’t too impressed. Not because it was bad, but more because it didn’t stand out from the crowd.
As we know, the song did have a revamp, and my feelings towards this song have definitely changed. The backing track now incorporates more of those Balkan elements which we all love to love, and overall the instrumental definitely sounds a lot more polished. Despite that, there’s something still quite outdated about this, but outdated in a nostalgic kind of way – the kind of way that would make this song a total guilty pleasure.
Looking at the studio version specifically, it’s nice to hear different vocal tones throughout the song and how they blend so well during the chorus. The chorus is very catchy and easy to sing along to, and despite originally not enjoying the song, the chorus was memorable. The studio version is one thing, but the live version is another.
Yes, the song has had a revamp, but will be enough to cover the vocal sins in the live performance? The national final performance left a lot to be desired, and their individual parts within the song really revealed an issue. As a group, they sound good during the chorus, but otherwise, they certainly have a lot of work to do. Being a group of six, that leaves no room for backing singers to perhaps cover some of those issues, so it really is up to them to improve their live performance before Eurovision.
Act + Performance
This is definitely a different approach for Montenegro who more often than not choose solo acts to represent them at the contest. I think there are positives and negatives associated with having a group represent a nation, not just Montenegro but in general as it changes how the song should or could be staged, and it’s six lead vocalists in the spotlight rather than one or two with backing singers in the distance or out of sight.
Their national final staging perhaps wasn’t the best concept (although doing a google search of D-moll has made things a little clearer), but it was positive in the sense that too much choreography may have hindered their vocals more than what we already heard. With the maximum of six people in the group itself, there’s no room for dancers either, so if there is any movement within the performance, it will be up to them to create that flow on stage. As much as a good stage show is important, I’d argue that good vocals is more important for this entry, and any additional visual interest might, or should come from props or backing imagery.
Will this reach the final? I’d have to unfortunately say no, although the semi-final is fairly open which leads me to believe that there is the faintest chance that if they can pull off a good staging and all perform well on the night, mixed with a few other factors like a good running order position, this has the tiniest chance of making it. With that said, I’m not feeling too hopeful for Montenegro.
I don’t think this is a bad song, but it just isn’t gripping nor modern enough to really capture the audiences.