2. Finland – Dark Side
Anyone who’s followed my blog for a while will be aware that I’m a huge rock fan! While I consider my music taste pretty diverse, rock is easily the genre I listen to the most of. I love the sounds it uses, the intensity and passion involved, the range of emotions that it can evoke, from anger to sadness to sheer joy. So when it comes to Eurovision, anything that falls under the general rock umbrella has an advantage when it comes to me liking it. It’s not a guarantee, there have been plenty of rock songs in national finals and Eurovision itself that I don’t think are that great, but that is not the case with the final two songs in this ranking! With the number of songs I love this year, I did make sure to do my due diligence and properly assess them all. I think that on the whole Dark Side is a probably a worse song than the last four I’ve ranked, they’re certainly far more interesting and unique entries, but however much I love them, I enjoy listening to Dark Side slightly more.
Dark Side is not the most original track, but it doesn’t need to be. It’s a nostalgia trip back to the early 2000s musically, but it’s also nostalgic on a personal level taking me back to my teenage years. The energy starts strong, from the moment the first chorus kicks in I’m already singing along, and it only builds from there. There’s just enough variety to stop it from getting too one-note, I like what they did with the bridge taking it down a level before it pumps it all the way back up for an explosive finish! The message is also a pretty familiar one for this genre – expressing frustration and pain in the verses, but its an overall positive message about unity for the outcasts and the determination to keep living and enjoy it despite the struggle. It’s a message that’s always resonated with me, especially when done like this.
I don’t have much else to say, this song is a solid rock track, and it does exactly what it sets out to do. It’s not going to change the mind of anyone who doesn’t like the genre, but I love it as it is and it’s slotting right into my non-Eurovision playlists seamlessly.
2020 vs 2021
I might have been a little harsh to Askel last year – after enough listens I was able to finally remember how his song went, and appreciate it for what it was, but Blind Channel absolutely blow his song out of the water for me. I was always gonna prefer some kind of rock song over Looking Back, and Dark Side is just a great track!