Azerbaijan hopes to find Eurovision success again with Chingiz
Azerbaijan had an incredibly successful start in the Eurovision Song Contest. They made it into the top 10 of the final on their first six(!) attempts, of which one victory, two top 3 finishes and two top 5 positions. 2013 was however the last year that the ‘Land of Fire’ made it into the top 10. From 2014 to 2017 they reached the final every single time, but 12th was their best result in those years. Last year, the country even failed to make it to the Saturday night of the competition when Aisel finished 11th in her semi final. Singer Chingiz was selected to bring Azerbaijan back on the road to Eurovision success with his song ‘Truth’.
Chingiz co-wrote his song with a team consisting of Borislav Milanov, Trey Campbell, Pablo Dinero, Hostess and Bo J. Milanov co-wrote the successful Bulgarian entries of 2017-2019 and has shared songs with Serbia and FYR Macedonia before. Now that Bulgaria is not participating, Azerbaijan gets the chance to try their luck with one of his compositions. ‘Truth’ is an upbeat pop songs with a mostly electronic production, but not without some touches of native instruments. ‘Truth’ mixes pulsing beats with guitars and Chingiz delivers straightforward pop vocals, as well as more traditional sounds in the intro and middle-eight. The production mostly sounds contemporary, but has some influences from 80s synth pop as well as disco. There sure is a lot going on, but surprisingly enough, ‘Truth’ does sound like a cohesive pop record with eclectic influences.
On first listen, I experienced ‘Truth’ as pleasant and I immediately appreciated the swinging and catchy chorus, being able to sing along to the ‘shut up about it’ parts almost immediately. At the same time, the track, including the chorus, does not really work towards a climax and I think that this is the reason that ‘Truth’ did not leave me all the way impressed. I thoroughly enjoy it, but would I pick up the phone to vote for it? Now Azerbaijan is known to always deliver on the visual part of their entries, so this might make ‘Truth’ more impactful and memorable. At the time of writing, Chingiz had not performed the song live yet, but it will be interesting to see how he holds his own with the falsetto heavy chorus in a live setting. if the team from Azerbaijan manages to deliver an at least decent performance, they should not need to be worried about missing the final again, but they need to have a pitch perfect stage show if they want to return to the top 10 on Saturday night.
Review on semi-final performance:
Azerbaijan was not really on the bookmakers radar until the rehearsals in Tel Aviv kicked off. Chingiz and his team found a smart and playful way to stage the slick electro pop tune ‘Truth’. There is robot arms, lasers, jumping projections and prominent biceps. What’s not to like? Chingiz also delivers a strong vocal performance with falsetto in the chorus. I don’t necessarily see a winner in this performance, but top 10 should be within reach for Azerbaijan, which would be the first time since 2013.
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