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New Swiss national anthem?My friend +Elaine Housby​ _has a special interest in the modernisation of…

New Swiss national anthem?

My friend +Elaine Housbyhas a special interest in the modernisation of national anthems; she already asked me about the competition going on in Switzerland. So today, when the six candidates were released, I forwarded the link to her. Here is the assessment of a genuinely independent non-Swiss observer:

A – sounds like a particularly dreary church hymn. Definitely not.
B – ditto, plus it has those clunking forced rhymes you associate with a bad national anthem.
C – Hmm, does sound sort of singable, but still boring.
D – Actually quite like this. More upbeat.
E – Quite catchy. Can easily imagine a crowd standing up and singing this at the Olympics.
F – This is a rip-off of the US ‘My Country Tis of Thee’.
So I listened to my favourites D and E again, and then I listened to them both in German, and then I read the lyrics in both French and German.  I realised that D mentions God, which a bunch of Swiss atheists are bound to complain about. Not clear if the ‘toi’ in E is supposed to be God as well, but at least it doesn’t actually say so. I really like the line about ‘un reve puissant comme nos montagnes’.  So my vote, if I had one, would definitely be for E.  I don’t think any of them are very inspired – I notice all of them have more dislikes than likes on Youtube – but I suppose that having to write lyrics that scan in four languages makes it difficult to be very original.

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