Austria – ORF need to think about what is going to happen

LUM!X feat. Pia Maria from Austria rehearsed their song Halo for second time
LUM!X feat. Pia Maria from Austria rehearsed their song Halo for second time

We all suspected Pia Maria was, frankly, a liability live and I hoped the pre-parties were just an aberration and it would be all right come the show.

I got precisely five notes into this first performance before I said, out loud ” Fucking hell fire”. This is the literal definition of a car crash set to music. Pia and the backing vocal (track or live) are out of sync and don’t match. Luca may well be trying to get the crowd enthused by being a DJ and asking them to throw their hands up in the air, but unless that first run-through was a test, and something was properly “up”, they have a lot of work on their hands to stop this being deliberately last.

By the end of the second run through I’m proper worried about this because it gets no better. Pia gurns into the camera and the effect of the lead dubs combined with her voice is “shrill” at best and “ear bleeding” at worst. There are notes that nobody is hitting with confidence and, sadly, they tend to be the ones needed for the song. I know they are young, but I worry reading things like this and the (now) inevitable poor result coming ORFs way will destroy them both musically.

Between the second and third run through, Pia wants the backing vocals turned down “a bit” so clearly her mix is “fine”, but the overall output clearly is not. Stage-wise, though, Imagine the Romanian circular piano turned into a lighting rig with a DJ box in the middle – that’s what you have here. It looks great. It sounds fucking awful.

ORF needs to take them to one side, now, and tell them that it’s going to all be OK when they lose. Either that, or fetch reinforcements from Vienna!