Germany opts for Girl Power ballad performed by S!sters
Germany’s success at the Eurovision Song Contest last year was much needed. In 2015 and 2016 the country finished dead last and they reached 25th place out of 26th the year after. Michael Schulte was their to save the day for the Germans last year with his touching ballad ‘You Let Me Walk Alone’. He reached an impressive fourth position on the final scoreboard and had a hit after the contest in parts of Europe. To find a suitable act to follow this up, German broadcaster ARD organized the national final Unser Lied Für Israel with seven artists and songs fighting for a ticket to Israel. While Aly Ryan (with a Dua Lipa styled bop) and Lilly Among Clouds (with a Kate Bush-like performance) were the favourites beforehand, duo S!sters walked away with the victory! Will they do the same later this year in Tel Aviv?
It seems like the German were going for a safe bet with S!sters. While there were some songs in their national final that weren’t typical for Eurovision, they sent a power ballad co-written by Laurell Barker, who also penned the UK entry ‘Bigger Than Us’ performed by Michael Rice. This time she had help from co-writers Marine Kaltenbacher, Tom Oehler and Thomas Stengaard. If you ask me, I would say that ‘Sister’ is a slightly more interesting composition with a more dramatic production and a stronger message. The girls sing about how they used to compete with each other until they realized that women stand stronger if they stand together. Although the message is there, ‘Sister’, just like ‘Bigger Than Us’, has got quite a few cliche sentences thrown in like ‘shine like city lights, torches in the sky’. S!sters perform a ballad that has a universal appeal, but one that could just as well be forgotten if performed amongst 25 other entries, as it is quite middle of the road and potentially forgettable on first listen.
Although their performance was vocally one of the strongest during the German national final, they still need to improve before they are ready for the big stage in Tel Aviv. I know these girls are all about not wanting to compete with each other, but I have to say that Laurita Spinelli’s solos come across more powerful and confident than those of her ‘s!ster’ Carlotta Truman. Visually, I would advise the girls and the German delegation to start from scratch. The elevated turning stage is not doing them any favours, at least not with the camera angles used tonight. Them being too far apart for most of it, makes for a distant, quite cold performance and with the stage moving, they often have their backs towards the camera, not interacting with the viewers at home. If they get all these things right, Germany might be looking at a mid-table result, but I don’t think they will come anywhere near Michael Schulte’s 4th place of last year.
Review on their performance and result:
First up of the countries we hadn’t seen in the semi-finals yet, was Germany. S!sters gave a vocally decent and definitely passionate performance of their song ‘Sister’, but with a staging that sober, it was no surprise that the televoters forgot all about them after hearing 22 more songs. Juries saved them from the last spot as televoters did not even award them one point. They finished 24th overall. Let us hope this won’t stop these girls from continuing to make music together!
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