This Saturday, it’s the big final of the big national selection for Eurovision – Sweden’s Melodifestivalen.
It’s taken five weeks to whittle down 28 entries to the final 12. And we’re mere days away from having a winner – to be decided by public televote and international jury.
As we head towards Saturday night’s final, SVT can proudly lay claim to having delivered the HITS this year. At the time of writing, a whopping eight of the top ten tracks on Spotify are Melodifestivalen songs, with 15 of the top 20 coming from the contest too. When approximately a third of the population tune in on Saturday evening, they’ll be seeing performances of songs that they themselves have been streaming, and hearing on the radio. And that, readers, is not just how to do a Eurovision national final – it’s also precisely how to do Saturday night TV entertainment. Kudos, once again, to SVT and this mega entertainment format that is Melodifestivalen.
So what’s gonna happen on Saturday night? Christ knows. But we’ve gathered together the 12 entries in the order they’ll be performing, looked at their popularity on Spotify and YouTube, broken down their chances of a win, and looked further into why Saturday night is gonna be so great for each and every one of them.
This is what the Melodifestivalen final is gonna look like;
1. Norrsken – Jon Henrik Fjällgren
Spotify streams? 1m
YouTube views? 235k
Could he win? Definitely. He’s done very well the first two times he’s competed in Melodifestivalen, and this entry is his best yet. After finishing in 3rd place and 2nd place in the final, the stars might well be aligning for a 1st place finish. No doubt with those northern lights he loves so much, dancing around those said stars.
What else is he getting out of it? The ability to demonstrate that he’s more than just a one-trick pony. He’s at the very least a one and a half trick pony.
2. Torn – Lisa Ajax
Spotify streams? 862k
YouTube views? 215k
Could she win? It sounds like a winner to us – it’s an incredible show-stopper of a performance. But none of the pre-contest signs are pointing towards a win for Lisa, which is a shame. If anyone could pull off a surprise on Saturday night, however, we hope it’s her.
What else is she getting out of it? That’s unclear until we see the results on Saturday night. After two finishes in the bottom half of the final leaderboard, she won’t really be achieving much by repeating that feat a third time.
3. Hello – Mohombi
Spotify streams? 1.2m
YouTube views? 289k
Could he win? This entry is probably the hardest one to predict. But we’ll say that while he’s not one of the favourites, he could well sneak in a win while the big two faves are squabbling amongst themselves.
What else is he getting out of it? A second coming. Which he needed.
4. Victorious – Lina Hedlund
Spotify streams? 570k
YouTube views? 91k
Could she win? Unfortunately not. Ten years ago, perhaps. But while we’re glad the contest hasn’t moved on so much that a song like this can’t still make the final, it has moved on so much that a song like this probably can’t still win.
What else is she getting out of it? She’s the gay fave of the year, and reaps all of the glory that comes with that honour. And she gets the best possible launch to her solo career post-Alcazar. She should be very happy with what she’s achieved with ‘Victorious’. And it’s our number 1, we’re very proud to say.
5. On My Own – Bishara
Spotify streams? 1.5m
YouTube views? 492k
Could he win? He’s likely to hoover up a lot of the public televote. But the whole thing might just be too much on the sickly-saccharine side of things for the juries.
What else is he getting out of it? Probably quite a long career ahead of him. And puberty is sure to dawn upon him soon, too.
6. Ashes to Ashes – Anna Bergendahl
Spotify streams? 1.7m (in four weeks)
YouTube views? 449k (in four weeks)
Could she win? Yes. She’s the underdog going into the final, and the most likely to cause a big upset to the favourites. ‘Ashes To Ashes’ has been the biggest radio hit of the 28 Melodifestivalen songs so far, and her performance at Saturday night’s Andra Chansen was that of a contest winner. If it did go on to win, it would be the best story that the contest has had in years.
What else is she getting out of it? No matter what happens on Saturday night, she’s getting her redemption arc.
7. Chasing Rivers – Nano
Spotify streams? 1.2m (in four weeks)
YouTube views? 387k (in four weeks)
Could he win? He won the televote in the final the last time he competed in Melodifestivalen, but he won’t even be coming close this time around.
What else is he getting out of it? A hit. And affirmation that his association to an unpleasant scandal last year hasn’t, in fact, tainted his image after all.
8. Hold You – Hanna Ferm & LIAMOO
Spotify streams? 1.6m
YouTube views? 285k
Could they win? Most definitely. They’re currently second in the odds and second on the Spotify chart. But if the juries prefer this over the number 1, the win will definitely be theirs.
What else are they getting out of this? LIAMOO really needed a big hitter on his hands, after his debut in Melodifestivalen last year was overshadowed by two much more popular male solo stars: and he’s gotten it. Hanna meanwhile, well, what a way to demomstrate to the nation what you’re capable of vocally. A star was born.
9. I Do Me – Malou Prytz
Spotify streams? 874k
YouTube views? 216k
Could she win? Probably not, as she’s up against far too many heavyweights.
What else is she getting out of it? Reaching the Melodifestivalen final directly, with an enormously likeable song, is the best possible introduction you can make to the nation as an artist, when no one had even heard of you four weeks prior. Result.
10. Too Late For Love – John Lundvik
Spotify streams? 1.8m
YouTube views? 384k
Could he win? It’s starting to look like he already has. The song has been number 1 on Spotify ever since its release. That’s the biggest indicator of how the public televote will go, and the song is already sounding like catnip for juries. He might well have this in the bag.
What else is he getting out of it? While last year’s ‘My Turn’ positioned him as perennial songwriter and background singer finally getting a moment in the spotlight, this year’s ‘Too Late For Love’ sees him ascend to the A-list. And deservedly so.
11. Not With Me – Wiktoria
Spotify streams? 1.1m
YouTube views? 276k
Could she win? Alas, whereas in previous years she was seen as a front-runner going into the finals, this year she’s looking more and more like an also-ran, in the context of the competition. Albeit one with a scene-stealing performance.
What else is she getting out of it? She’s gotten to demonstrate her versatility by showcasing her considerable chops as a diva. Flawlessly, at that.
12. I Do – Arvingarna
Spotify streams? 796k
YouTube views? 172k
Could they win? No. But they’ll probably do better than dansbands usually do in modern Melodifestivalen finals. So, basically, they won’t be finishing at the bottom of the table.
What else are they getting out it? After quite a few years out of the relative spotlight, a place in the Melodifestivalen final has reaffirmed their position as one of Sweden’s biggest dansbands. This has been the perfect way for them to mark their 30th anniversary, and they’re gonna be getting a shit-load of gigs throughout 2019. Member number 4 will be glad he got his family holiday out of the way during semi-final 4 week!