Bulgaria called it quits in 2013 when their highest-scoring artists Elitsa and Stoyan couldn’t repeat their success of qualifying for the final, but they decided to return after they hosted Junior Eurovision and searched for Poli Genova’s dress.
Given her success presenting at JESC last November, BNT decided to internally select her to return to the contest after 5 years, this time with the song “If Love was a Crime.”
While Poli’s 2011 entry was pulsing with anger to stay in a relationship despite outsiders’ doubts, her 2016 entry feels a lot more lighthearted. And since the words run a lot faster than in Na Inat, the phrasing reminds me a lot of one of my chemistry professors, who tends to jam a few syllables together into less than 2 seconds, pauses, and repeats until the sentence is over.
Once the verse shifts into the refrain, the tone changes from lighthearted to somewhat more sad-wishful-emotional, like the relationship described is there but it can’t be made public. I really like the say she says “miracles” and “criminals”, kind of like in one of those songs that shove too many syllables into one line to show that there’s so much emotion or back story it wouldn’t fit the syllable count. And then comes the chant-refrain of “o, daj mi ljubovta”, turning the song into one of the most Ohrwurm-y songs in the contest along with France’s “You-ou-ou-ou.” I can’t get the song out of my head after simply looking at the lyrics, and I’m pretty sure a lot of fans will be able to sing along after one or two refrains.
Given the hype, I really hope that Bulgaria at least qualifies to the final. Top 10 (or even top 5) would be fantastic, but given how bad I am at predicting the scoreboard prior to the semis, having them qualifying would already be a step up from staying in the finals every year except 2007.