Eurovision 2020 Review: Armenia – Athena Manoukian – Chains On You

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(This article was updated on the 13th of March when the revamp of the song was released)

Armenia opts for contemporary pop with Athena Manoukian’s ‘Chains On You’
Although Armenia was off to a good start in Eurovision with five top 10 finishes in a row in their first years, the country has not been as successful ever since. In the past two editions, the Armenians did not make it into the final, while the 4th place (achieved in 2008 and 2014) remains their best result. This year they are trying to change that with Armenian-Greek singer Athena Manoukian, who won the Armenian national final with ‘Chains On You’.

Manoukian won the national final with quite a margin, thanks to the juries who gave her top marks, while she ended up third with televoters. The singer co-wrote ‘Chains On you’ with Konstantinos Pantaloudis. The upbeat pop tune has a contemporary feel with clear hip hop influences in both the production and her vocal delivery, which resembles rapping in the verses. The tune takes it sweet time to get to the first chorus, while the first version of the song started to repeat itself after the first chorus, the revamp (released on the 13th of March along with the music video) has a more satisfying finale that will give room for an exciting dance break on stage too. The whole production of the song is a lot fuller, more finished and stronger than the version she performed during the national final and does the contemporary sound they are going for more justice.

in the national final performance, Manoukian does already show off quite a bit of confidence and attitude. She knows how to sell ‘Chains On You’. The choreography is serviceable and so are her live vocals. She owns the stage for sure, and if they could bring some of the stunning visuals of the music video to the stage, I could see their chances rise. Definitely don’t count out Armenia just yet.


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