Eurovision 2017 Review: The Netherlands – O’G3NE – Lights and Shadows

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The Netherlands bets on vocals and harmonies with O’G3NE for Eurovision
In the past few years, O’G3Ne was an often mentioned name in discussions about who should represent The Netherlands in the Eurovision Song Contest. The girlband consisting of the sisters Lisa, Amy and Shelley were clear in interviews that they would be open to the option and this year they are actually internally selected! The girls will represent their country during the contest in May in Kiev, Ukraine. Today they premiered their Eurovision song, the powerballad ‘Lights And Shadows’.

O’G3NE first rose to fame in the Netherlands when they participated in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest under the name Lisa, Amy & Shelley, reached an 11th place. They signed a record deal, released some music and came back swinging in 2014 when they auditioned for The Voice with the three of them. From their audition on they were the ones to beat in the show, having their cover versions high up in the iTunes charts and the coaches praising their performances every single week. They ended up winning the competition and their single ‘Magic’ became a moderate success. They however failed to make much of an impression with their next releases, but earlier this year they returned to the spotlight in the television show The Best Singers of the Netherlands, where Dutch artists cover each other’s songs. Their covers received some great feedback and not long after the show they launched their latest album We Got This.

As their little bio makes clear, their biggest successes were achieved with covers of other songs, something that is not allowed of course on the Eurovision Song Contest. Like most of their singles, ‘Lights and Shadows’ is co-written by their dad, Rick Vol. They dedicate the song about hope to their mum who is currently battling an illness. But what does it sound like? ‘Lights and Shadows’ is a powerful midtempo pop track with some hints of R&B. It starts out quietly, mainly focussing on the girls harmonizing, while it builds up to the chorus, of which the ‘cry no more’ parts are actually quite catchy! Towards the middle eight the bass gets more prominent as the track works towards a few key changes with some excellent vocal work.

‘Lights and Shadows’ keeps building from start to finish which will hopefully keep the viewers on the edge of their seats and the track is definitely suitable for them to capitalize on the fact they are sisters who perfected the craft of harmonizing. The only problem might be that the track sounds more like a song that would have had a huge appeal in the 90s and not so much today. The way it is produced is slightly dated, but in a year full of ballads, this one could stand out thanks to their strong vocals, the uplifting message and the build up. If the girls sell the hell out of this track on stage in Kiev, they might bring home a decent result for the Netherlands!

UPDATE – Review on semi final performance:
The girls deliver a truly moving and impeccable vocal performance. The harmonies are stunning and their every single move is perfectly synchronised. ‘Lights and Shadows’ might bring back the sound of the 90s girl bands, but does so in a way that is still appealing in 2017. The camera work during the last minute of their performance does need some work as we want to see more of the girls instead of those wide shots of the arena, but they thoroughly deserve their spot in the final on Saturday. They might even deliver the most impressive vocal performance there!

UPDATE – Review on final performance and result (11th):
The O’G3NE girls delivered another vocally stunning performance of their empowering pop song ‘Lights and Shadows’. Written by their father, sung for their mother, they touched the hearts of the juries around Europe, as they were in top 5 in that part of the voting. Unfortunately the televoters weren’t as impressed, causing O’G3NE to just fall out of the top 10, but the girls sure can be proud and I hope to see them back on the Eurovision stage one day, hopefully with a slightly more contemporary song.

Check all Eurovision 2017 reviews: Albania – Armenia – AustraliaAustria – AzerbaijanBelarus – BelgiumBulgariaCroatiaCyprus – Czech Republic – DenmarkEstoniaFinland – France – FYR MacedoniaGeorgia – Germany – GreeceHungary – IcelandIreland – Israel – ItalyLatviaLithuania – Malta – MoldovaMontenegro – The NetherlandsNorwayPoland – Portugal – Romania – San Marino – SerbiaSlovenia – Spain – Sweden – SwitzerlandUkraine – United Kingdom


Eurovisie Recensie: O’G3NE – Lights and Shadows

O’G3NE lanceert Eurovisie lied ‘Lights and Shadows’
Vandaag was het eindelijk zover! De zussen Lisa, Amy en Shelley, die samen de band O’G3NE vormen, presenteerden hun lied voor het Eurovisie Songfestival. De dames die tien jaar geleden al eens meededen aan het Junior Songfestival en landelijk meer bekendheid vergaarden dankzij hun winst in The Voice of Holland in 2014, gaan Nederland in Kiev vertegenwoordigen met het krachtige ‘Lights and Shadows’.

‘Lights and Shadows’ is zoals de meeste liedjes van de zussen mede geschreven door hun vader Rick Vol. Hij heeft tot nog toe nog geen grote hit voor zijn dochters kunnen schrijven, gezien ze vooral scoren met covers, maar wellicht wordt dit de eerste! De meiden dragen het lied op aan hun moeder die momenteel ernstig ziek is. ‘Lights and Shadows’ dat over hoop gaat, bouwt langzaam op. In het eerste couplet is er vooral ruimte voor de dames om hun harmonieën te laten horen terwijl de ‘cry no more’ gedeeltes van het refrein best pakkend blijken te zijn. Richting het tweede refrein krijgt de midtempo track meer kracht door een baslijn, die het een vleugje R&B meegeeft. Een aantal modulaties en wat uithalen verder komt het lied tot een einde en blijf ik met het gevoel zitten dat het bepaald niet eigentijds is, behoorlijk gedateerd klinkt, maar toch wel blijft hangen. In de jaren ’90 was het wellicht kansrijker geweest, maar als de dames in Kiev een wervelend optreden weten neer te zetten met veel nadruk op de vocale harmonieën, sluit ik een succesje zeker nog niet uit!

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