You can count on Azerbaijan to deliver a great song to Eurovision each year. Chances are you’re going to hear a power pop ballad delivered by accomplished artist(s). They’re in it to win it, which they did in 2011.
Which is to say, they don’t take risks. You’re not going to hear anything weird or offbeat. Or innovative. When you don’t take risks, you miss out on the opportunity to be transcendent. Azerbaijan is hardly alone in this, but I point them out because they are a contender.
Which brings me to Elnur Huseynov who was chosen by internal selection to wave the Azerbaijani flag in Vienna with his song Hour of the Wolf. Does he transcend or maintain the status quo?
A little of both I would say. Hour of the Wolf is a lovely, introspective song with some powerful moments. Elnur Huseynov has a beautiful, plaintive voice with the range of emotion necessary to give listeners the chills. Go to 2:10 in the video when he turns and has that moment that makes you go “yaaas!”
That being said, the song is pretty safe. After it was done, I didn’t feel a strong, emotional connection, though that might change after a few more listens. Will I remember it this time next year? I don’t think so.
This will undoubtedly make it to the top ten, but I don’t see it as a winner. Even being predictably good is still predictable. Elnur Huseynov will give a great performance and I wish him all the best.
You can find out more about Elnur Huseynov here.