Out of the light, like a star, like a hero

I’m terrified of this post. This is the genre most associated with Eurovision and the reason why people who hate Eurovision do. Oh, and I have to prove that this post is worthwhile in the wake of ESCInsight’s explanation of the genre. This genre is called schlager, and it’s…um…well…hmm…

You know how disco died a sad death in the U.S. years ago? Well, in Europe (or at least at Eurovision), that didn’t happen. They still have uncynical, delightful dance music that doesn’t have the clinical slickness of EDM. I’m outsourcing what the genre is to my unrequited friends over at ESCInsight; you can access their definition in the link above.

This is, in the minds of many of the more obsessive Eurovision fans (myself included), the music that should always make up Eurovision; schlager tends to do extremely well in pre-contest fan polls. However, it receives quite a bit of derision outside the Eurovision bubble and never does super well when the voters are, for the most part, not diehard Eurovision folk. To defend this genre from some of this criticism, we’re going to use Charlotte Perrelli’s 2008 entry for Sweden, “Hero.”

“Ughhhhhhh it sounds so dated.”

Three years later, Lady Gaga took this to a top 10 spot on the Billboard Hot 100, and I fail to see any serious difference between the two of them musically. The synthesized strings, the processed electropop, the pre-final chorus energy fakeout – it’s all there. This music is still being made; it’s just being made under a different name.

“Ughhhhhhh the lyrics are terrible.”

I’m not hearing this from a member of the same listening public that made “You know what to do with that big fat butt, wiggle wiggle wiggle, just a little bittle, little bittle little bittle” a thing.*

*That was an extremely difficult sentence to type because AutoCorrect kept trying to turn “bittle” into a word. The things I do for all three of you who read this.

“Ughhhhhhhh she can’t sing.”

Is there anyone working today who can pull off a scream as pained and in tune as “NEVER DIE ALOOOOOOOOOONE?”

So, with that song stuck in your head until the end of time, I’ll leave you with this mashup, which speaks for itself.

(A few others:

Iceland 2010 – Je Ne Sais Quoi

Sweden 2006 – Invincible

Sweden National Final 2015 – Möt mig i gamla stan

San Marino 2013 – Crisalide

Sweden 2009 – La Voix

Serbia 2015 – Beauty Never Lies

Arguably Georgia 2015 – Warrior)


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