7 Day YouTube Views: 193,003
7 Day YouTube Likes: 7,004
Belarus offer Forever by Alekseev, a contestant marred by controversy regarding the song, his selection to represent Belarus and even his singing ability.
Forever is a dark and brooding song with a music video that starts in a similar manner, symbolically stabbing himself in the hand with a fountain pen and more. However it does lighten up towards the end with shots of him playing football and laughing as he pours water over himself, doesn't really seem to go with the song. The same can be said about a potential staging idea Belarus have had in which Alekseev wears a body suit that blends with the lighting effects in the background. They may or may not run with this idea in the semi-finals but it has something of the "Sergei"s (Russia, 2016) about it in that it has no relation to the song.
The song itself isn't bad, the build up in the verses is good, the melody of the chorus is very reptitive though and the tune begins to grate after the first few listens. Despite how long this song has been knocking around (the Russian version pre-dating the English version), it almost feels half-finished. The track doesn't seem to build and then ends very abruptly. Further, Alekseev may lack the ability to sing it, while the studio version sounds good, his live performances have been pretty terrible and he may be exposed come the live shows.
The betting markets have places Alekseev right in the middle, 21st out of the 43 countries competing. I personally feel this is about right but I'm very wary of his chances of qualifying from semi-final 1. He's sandwiched between the two big hitters of the competition, Israel and Estonia and I feel like he'll be forgotten between those acts. Belarus' YouTube stats don't inspire much confidence either. Once again, this goes down for me as a no-qualifier though things could have been different had Belarus had a more advantageous position in the running order.