FYR Macedonia bring swinging electro pop by Jana Burčeska
FYR Macedonia is one of the least successful countries in the Eurovision Song Contest. The country never managed to reach the top 10 of the final and only took part in that final once in the past nine years, in 2012 when Kaliopi performed ‘Crno I Belo’. Their best result was back in 2006, when Elena Risteska reached a 12th position with ‘Ninanajna’. The country selected Jana Burčeska this year to change this all. With the swinging electro pop tune ‘Dance Alone’ she is ready to win the hearts of the European voters.
‘Dance Alone’ is one of the three entries this year written by a team of songwriters consisting of Borislav Milanov and Joacim Persson joined by Florence A. and Alex Omar. Milanov and Persson also wrote the Serbian entry ‘In Too Deep’ and the track from Bulgaria, ‘Beautiful Mess’. The team proved their ability to write a successful Eurovision song when they composed Poli Genova’s fabulous ‘If Love Was A Crime’, which reached the 4th place for Bulgaria in last year’s contest.
If you ask me, I think FYR Macedonia’s entry this year has the potential to reach a similar result if they manage to get the live performance completely right. ‘Dance Alone’ is a well produced pop track with an infectious melody and a very contemporary production, which at the same time plays with the synthpop sound from the 80s. Sonically it might remind you of some of Sweden’s finest pop stars and it honestly sounds like it could become an international hit. The chorus and especially the ‘I let it go, I let it go wild’ post chorus bit is super infectious and has a good chance of playing around in the viewer’s head. I love how the track has the perfect pop build up with a proper middle eight and even an outro. Also, ‘I’ll let the pavement be my catwalk’ is a fabulous lyric.
If FYR Macedonia’s team manages to capture the vibe of the intriguing video on stage in Kiev, this might become the country’s best result to date!
UPDATE – Review on semi final performance:
It must have been a night of mixed feelings for Jana Burceska from FYR Macedonia. She announced her pregnancy and got engaged on live television after her partner proposed in the green room, but in the end she won’t be dancing alone in the final of the Eurovision Song Contest, which is a bit of a shame. ‘Dance Alone’ is absolutely one of my favourite songs of the year with its 80s retro vibe and irresistibly catchy chorus and flawless production, but just like Serbia’s performance, FYR Macedonia’s team did not manage to do the song justice on stage. Yes, Jana is a charismatic performer who knows how to play with the camera, but vocally she was leaning on her backings too much and although the song is called ‘Dance Alone’, the act could have done with a proper choreography with dancers. Having said that, based on the songs, FYR Macedonia easily deserved a spot in the final!
UPDATE – semi final result:
Jana Burceska did not really stand a chance of qualifying either when looking at the result. She finished in 15th position overall, while juries place her 14th and televoters 13th.
Check all Eurovision 2017 reviews: Albania – Armenia – Australia – Austria – Azerbaijan – Belarus – Belgium – Bulgaria – Croatia – Cyprus – Czech Republic – Denmark – Estonia – Finland – France – FYR Macedonia – Georgia – Germany – Greece – Hungary – Iceland – Ireland – Israel – Italy – Latvia – Lithuania – Malta – Moldova – Montenegro – The Netherlands – Norway – Poland – Portugal – Romania – San Marino – Serbia – Slovenia – Spain – Sweden – Switzerland – Ukraine – United Kingdom