Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Dana's Almost-International Smash

Forgetting it was not 1997, Dana International really spiced things up on Romania's televised 2004 Eurovision selection broadcast, performing the intoxicating English-language Summer legs-to-the-ceiling anthem Matadoras - a scintilating salsa serving spiked with cock-teasing lyrics that Sam Fox, Sabrina, Tatjana, or even Alexia, and whoever else has had hits that went down a storm in 90s Ibiza, would all kill to jiggle their jugs to: 'from here to Argentina, we step into the arena / the boys are waiting for us, we are Matadorus' is just masterful!

The groin-gagging would-be holiday anthem was in fact due for release as part of an international contract with Sony, but was aborted when the deal fell through and the fervent fan favourite remains unreleased to this day: only the live version is available. Its transfixing refrain 'ooh ahh, oh la la' is the language of love and also transsexual for 'follow me home.' Dana's career will forever be skidmarked for most people by Diva, but this bar-hopping bopper was intended to be part of a project with the kind of coherent scope that was not quite ready when the singer delivered a ropey cover of Woman In Love as the follow-up to her Eurovision success - her Hebrew material rarely translates well, so to hear a song that was deliberately aimed for mainland European success fertilizes a unique engagement with its audience.

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