08 February 2017

Eurovision 2017: Albania: Lindita Halimi: Botë

Eurovision Albania 2017 / Lindita
Lindita Halimi to sing for Albania

The 2017 season of the Eurovision Song Contest has kicked off with Albania once again becoming the first country to choose its entry. Although it missed the final last year, the country has chosen yet another solo female artist as its representative.

27-year-old Lindita is a veteran of music and vocal competitions, having participated in Albania's version of Idol, in addition to the internal TV contest Top Fest  which she won in 2009. A brief spell of popularity in the US appears on her CV as well, thanks to her appearance in the later stages of the last series of American Idol.

Flag Albania
Botë  marks Lindita's second attempt at winning Festivali i Këngës - the Albanian route to Eurovision glory - with the song following the (almost) exclusive tradition of Albania sending an overblown melodramatic ballad to the Eurovision stage. Lindita doesn't disappoint with the delivery: the song requires a powerful vocal and a showstopping stage performance and that is exactly what she provides. It impressed enough of the jurors, topping the scoreboard by a spectacular margin at the 55th staging of the show.

But what of its chances in Kiev in May? As it stands, Eurovision voters have generally been unimpressed by the vocal gymnastics of the Albanian entries. Granted, they have all been very good singers, but most of the songs have not been memorable for the right reasons.

At the moment, Botë  has very little of a hook to draw in the listener on its first play. However, there promises to be some significant changes to the song by the time it is performed in the first semi-final on May 9. Amongst them is a revision of the lyrics to English. This change usually offers little middle ground of opinion: it's either a definite help or a miserable hindrance. At the moment, we can only wait with bated breath for the end result.

The same could be said of its musical backing. Festivali i Këngës  provides a full live orchestra, but there will be no such lavish production in Kiev. Hopefully, the Albanian team's overhaul will give us something much more edgy and modern.

Could it qualify? Right now, it's all speculation in its present form. Lindita looks good and is obviously used to the big stage, so no problem there. The song's future really depends on the quality of the other national final winners and its own update.

Nevertheless, the song seems to have very marginal appeal to progress any further.


Live Version

Studio Version

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