Top 12 Songs of Melodifestivalen 2015 | Museled

Here at Museled, we've been bringing you weekly coverage on the glorious spectacle that is Melodifestivalen. But now that the contest has finished, and we'll have yet another year to wait for more songs, staging, and all-around Swedish silliness, what better way to send off this year's show than count down our top 12 songs from this year's line-up! There were so many solid (mostly) pop numbers in this year's contest and though not all could make the cut, we thought it only fitting to give recognition to some of the stronger songs that may not have made it to Friends Arena, but have certainly earned a spot on our playlist. So let the countdown begin!

12. Kristin Amparo - "I See You"

Kristin may have gotten off to a rough start in the competition, as her surprisingly shaky vocals earned her a spot at Andra Chansen instead of the finals, but her second time out more than redeemed herself. Not only were her vocals better, there was more life in her overall performance and by the end, she had sent our hearts soaring. There is a wide range in "I See You," as Kristin's voice can masterfully swell in the bigger moments but also flow in a quieter falsetto. We're not as surprised that this song didn't do as well in the contest, but we're hoping Kristin will return to Melodifestivalen with a more uptempo song that she can drop her incredible voice all over and show everyone what she's made of.

11. Kalle Johansson - "För din skull" (For your sake)

Little Kalle Johansson may be only 18 years old but he left quite the impression on us. The boy makes solid feel-good pop music with a boy-next-door charm and his voice bears the utmost sincerity as it sings those sweet melodies. The fact that his songs are in Swedish only enhance the authenticity of his artistry and so long as you know the translation of the song title, Kalle can communicate the emotion of the song and tell you the story regardless of whether or not you understand Swedish. "För din skull" is unassuming in its charm and warmth. Kalle's live performance was decent, given how young and upcoming he is. But for our sake, we hope this is just the beginning for him.

10. Linus Svenning - "Forever Starts Today"

We were rightfully critical of Linus Svenning's live performance throughout the competition, as he let everyone and everything around him carry his dead weight. But make no mistake, "Forever Starts Today" is a good song. It's bright, uplifting, and has a well-executed Celtic influence. He also sounds good singing it, and once you remove his lack of stage presence from the experience, Linus will have you up and motivated and ready to take on the world.

9. Jon Henrik Fjällgren - "Jag är fri" (I am free)

Before this year's contest, we had never heard of "Joiking" before. A Joik is a traditional form of Sami song, and for those unfamiliar, Samis are an Indigenous group of people that are mostly found in regions of northern Europe. A Joik doesn't often have lyrics and can bear some similarities to chanting found in other Native cultures. It's all very fascinating and we'd highly recommend reading up more on the subject but as for "Jag är fri," there's an almost transcendent spirituality to the song and the weight of the inspiration that Jon Henrik offers to so many underrepresented people only magnifies the impact of his song. The live staging of the song was quite beautiful as well, as Jon Henrik had meticulously developed various pieces of imagery to illustrate cultural staples of his Sami upbringing, from the Northern lights, the Sami dancers, his traditional attire, and even the tree. The music video is also representative of Sami life, as Jon Henrik can be seen tending to his reindeers amongst other things.

8. Rickard Söderberg & Elize Ryd - "One By One"

Though Elize Ryd is often billed as a "metal" singer, due to the fact that she sings vocals for a metal band, we'll tell you straight out that this is false advertising. Her voice has all the loveliness you want in a pop singer but unlike many an established popstar, she can actually carry a tune. "One By One" paired her up with opera singer Rickard Söderberg and both are more than capable of making dramatic musical impact. The production of the song is good but it's the the beautiful blending of their voices that is at the forefront of why this song is so strong. The live version was most certainly worthy of a better result than 5th in their heat, as we love a well-used wind machine to add more flair to an already enjoyable song.

7. Magnus Carlsson - "Möt mig i Gamla Stan"

Shame on anyone who ever thought that schlager would stop being relevant. Thank goodness for Magnus Carlsson, who arrived on time to prove to everyone that there's always room in life for a bit more sparkle. Magnus looked dapper as ever in his sharp suit, and rightfully advanced straight to the finale from his heat. The music video is of course set in Gamla Stan, stirring feelings of sentimentality in us of partying at a gay club while watching Eurovision. (That's what we did the last time we were in Gamla Stan). "Möt mig i Gamla Stan" starts off with alluring come-hither verses before transitioning into a pleasant, cheery chorus that reminds you all of why schlager will never die.

If that wasn't enough to convince you of the power of schlager, check out this viral (in Sweden) hit of one of the official sign-language-signers getting his groove on and having the time of his life signing to this slice of schlager heaven.

6. Samir & Viktor - "Groupie"

We did not expect this song to grow on us as much as it did. We had initially felt let down that "Groupie" wasn't as clubby as Samir & Viktor's first single, "Success," but lo and behold, these two managed to win us over. If there's one thing we can say for certain is that these two improved enormously during their time competing, from the semi-finals, to Andra Chansen, all the way through the finals, which concluded with them in bed together. Literally. The energy and enthusiasm of these two is unmatched and there's something truly endearing about how much fun they have on stage together.

5. Midnight Boy - "Don't Say No"

We've almost always hated Melodifestivalen songs that are heavily influenced from a past decade, but Midnight Boy's passion and commitment to the magic of the 1980's is felt in the synth-heavy, magnificently camp "Don't Say No." Midnight Boy is precise in his development of a sound that combines all of the magical melodrama of the 1980's without feeling like a relic. It's sleek enough to fit in nicely amongst all your favourite 21st century club songs and another strength of Midnight Boy is that he places high importance on the visual element of his art, too. From the live performance to the music video, Midnight Boy has laid out his vision in a manner that only serves to strengthen his music. Don't you worry, Midnight Boy, we'll never say no to you. Keep delivering that sweet, 80's goodness!

4. Molly Pettersson Hammar - "I'll Be Fine"

By far, the biggest 'WTF moment' of this year's Melodifestivalen was the elimination of Molly Pettersson Hammar, as a technical glitch of the contest's app prevented her from making it past the first round of voting in her heat. "I'll Be Fine" is a punchy, up-tempo song that is ripe with attitude, soul, and Molly's vocals are fantastic. Molly herself is also brimming with personality and energy, which translates well on stage, so all the ingredients are in place for her to be the next big female powerhouse in Sweden so long as she manages her career right. "I'll Be Fine" is modern, well-arranged, and sounds much like something that an established UK diva would drop and become the breakup-anthem of the year. Your ex didn't treat you right? Doesn't matter because Molly's got your back, and you're gonna be fine.

3. Andreas Weise - "Bring Out The Fire"

Andreas Weise is one of the biggest breakout stars for us in this year's Melodifestivalen. From his vocal ability to his on-point showmanship, the groove of the song, and the good use of instrumentation, this ended up being one of our favourite songs of the whole contest. It was downright criminal that this didn't make it to Friends Arena because we are confident that Andreas Weise was one of the few artists that could work a crowd of that size. It's our understanding that much of Andreas' back catalogue is a bit more old-fashioned, but we're hoping that this hybridisation of big band music with a modern groove will be present in more of what he puts out next.

2. Dinah Nah - "Make Me (La La La)"

Dinah Nah is undoubtedly the Queen of this year's contest. "Make Me (La La La)" was thoroughly well-produced and while that break-down is already strong to begin with, it was magnified a thousand times over with the most epic shaky-cam action of the year and some decent choreography to boot. Dinah Nah has made it clear that she's not a dancer, but though some might not realise this because of how heavily produced the song is, she's actually a solid vocalist. Dinah Nah can reign supreme as the only act to give us a banger this year. It's the type of song that grabs hold of you and compels to unleash all your stresses by dancing it out. It can be a highly cathartic experience, so surrender yourself to Queen Dinah Nah and go on and La La La!

1. Måns Zelmerlöw - "Heroes"

Don't pretend you didn't know this was coming. All the (mostly international) fans that have been clamouring for Måns Zelmerlöw to make a big come-back have been vindicated for the years of unwavering support. "Heroes" is a highly current, radio-friendly song, with it's plucky-guitared verses, big sweeping chorus, and Måns' so-good-it'll-change-your-life vocals. Yet again, the Debs (Joy and Linnea Deb) are billed as composers on the break-out hit of the year. Last year it was Ace Wilder's "Busy Doin' Nothin'" but while that song was a delightfully clever statement on the attitude older generations have about younger ones, "Heroes" has a more inspirational message: that of being a better example to our children so as to bring about change in the world. If that all weren't enough for you, "Heroes" has the hands-down strongest visual staging we've ever seen. With projection mapping, animation, lighting, and Måns making grey the new black, it's a visual treat from start to finish. Following Måns' multi-record-breaking victory, "Heroes" quickly rose to the top of the Eurovision betting odds and we'll be (loudly) cheering it on when it competes in Vienna in May. So treat yourself, be a hero, and watch this Melodifestivalen masterpiece again and again.


Which songs were your favourite of this year? Let us know in the comments section below and stay tuned for our commentary on this year's Eurovision!


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