2016 Reviews – Serbia – Sanja Vučić ZAA – Goodbye (Shelter)

Serbia internally selected their act this year, and after a bit of a wait, we learnt that it would be ZAA Sanja Vučić to sing the song Goodbye (Shelter). We don’t think Sanja will be saying goodbye to us in the semi-finals, and here’s why.

Goodbye is a powerful song sung by a powerful singer. From the first moments of the song, we know the song is full of emotion, both through the music and Sanja’s voice. The music is stunning – the strings section adds so much to this song, and there’s a slight hint of traditional instrumentation which makes this so much more than just a ballad. It’s a shame we don’t have a live orchestra anymore, because this would have been an absolute winner.

Sanja is truly the right artist to be singing a song like this. Her voice is absolutely incredible, and that was proved by her appearances at the pre-party performances, which were spot on, every time. She has a soulful quality about her voice which is unlike many of the voices this year, and even though it is a ballad, I think this stands out, especially with an outstanding vocal performance.

It was interesting for me to watch the official video, because Sanja comes across as such an over the top performer, in all senses, in her movements on stage (which were actually quite off-putting) and even in her dress and makeup, but seeing her at the pre-parties across Europe I feel like we got to see the real Sanja. She is bubbly, energetic and still a bit over the top, but it’s more endearing. She comes across as quite sassy in her performance, which is perfect for the song, but I think she needs to tone down the movements, somewhere between too over-the-top and too rigid, there needs to be a happy medium.

I think this is almost definitely a qualifier. I think juries will appreciate this song, but I also think televoters will go for it. In semi 2, I think it’s got a spot in the bag, and even in the final I think this has potential for a top 10 position.

I’m giving this an 8.5/10.

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