EUROVISION NEWS WITH ATTITUDE
They are among the most famous musicians in their native country. One half of them is a rock band that has stood on the Eurovision stage twice before, the other half are new to the contest. But Zdob și Zdub & Advahov Brothers will proudly represent Moldova at Eurovision 2022, where they will bring “Trenulețul” (The Little Train).
Scroll down to read the “Trenulețul” lyrics
Zdob și Zdub & Advahov Brothers became Moldova’s Eurovision 2022 representatives as a result of a shortened selection process. The group was one of 28 acts to be asked to audition live in Chișinău for an internal selection in January. A jury panel consisting of five judges, including Eurovision alumni Cristina Scarlat and Aliona Moon, chose the track among the auditionees.
But “Trenulețul” has a longer history than just that. The track was released back in December 2021 and was the promotional song for the reopening of the rail connection between Chișinău, Moldova, and Bucharest, Romania.
The two groups’ decision to enter Eurovision was not a surprise for many, knowing the history of their success. Zdob și Zdub has been the leading Moldovan folk rock group for decades and already performed at Eurovision twice. In 2005, the group finished sixth overall, establishing the country’s most successful result until 2017 and still their second-best overall. In 2011, the group managed to reach the left-hand side of the scoreboard again with “So Lucky”.
Meanwhile, the Advahov Brothers, have been among the leading virtuoso musicians in Moldova. Hailing from Cahul, they established a large orchestra under their lead consisting of over forty musicians. Next to that, they have plenty experience of performing abroad.
The meaning of Zdob și Zdub and Advahov Brothers’ “Trenulețul” has been the root of much speculation. Locally, it has been critiqued for containing lyrics that seemed to support a reconciliation of Moldova and neighbouring Romania as one unified state, a controversial political topic in Moldova.
However, the group has denied any allegations of this. In January, in an interview to Radio KP, Zdob și Zdub lead singer Roman Iagupov said the song can also be seen as a metaphor for an artist’s life:
“We decided with them [the Advahov Brothers], before Eurovision, to do a musical project. We are going to call it like that: ‘Folklore and rock’n’roll’, we started the work on an album, we recorded a single. The song is called ‘Trenulețul’. It’s the wild train on which musicians travel their whole lives with their songs. We rather decided to spontaneously participate in Eurovision, therefore saying that Zdob si Zdub is going for a third time to Eurovision is not exactly right. It’s Zdob si Zdub and the Advahov brothers. It’s a project.”
Both musically and lyrically, the song is a literal fusion of styles and cultures. This is highly symbolic for the song, as it deals with the fusion of borders and countries since trains manage to connect people. And when people are connected, it seems they are more similar than might be thought.
The group emphasises this in lyrics like: “And in every country / The violin makes magic / When the train arrives at the station / It’s like it’s out of the country / It was if it were walking without going outside / From home to home”.
This is highly related to the life story of Zdob și Zdub lead singer Roman Iagupov, who was born in Volgograd, Russia, and raised in Chișinău with a Moldovan mother. During an interview in 2019, he said:
“Probably they like to see us [Zdob și Zdub] in each corner of the world, because people from Moldova can be found everywhere. Take Australia, take America, take each corner of the world. People continuously come to me: ‘Hello, I’m from Moldova!’.”
Music and lyrics by: Advahov Brothers and Zdob și Zdub
What do you think of the “Trenulețul” lyrics? How do you think Zdob şi Zdub & Advahov Brothers will do at Eurovision 2022 for Moldova? Share your thoughts below.
Our Renske is a graduated Slavicist from the Netherlands. As a daughter of a Eurovision fan, she grew up watching and listening to Eurovision songs. wiwibloggs introduced her to a community of loving people from all over the world, including to her significant other.
Also, it is not “chisinau to bucharest” but rather”chisinau or bucharest”. Which strengthens the meaning of the song – if you would wake up in chisinau or bucharest, you would not see a difference.
Also, there is a small mistake in the translation in the most important part:
Când ajunge trenu-n gar?
Parc? n-a ie?it din ?ar?
Parc?-a mers, f?r? s? ias?
De acas? pân-acas?
When the train arrives at the station,
Seems like it never went out of the country,
Like it traveled without borders,
From home to home.
The main topic of the song is actually that Romania and Moldavia were one country brutally broken in 2 by Russia in 1945. Same people, same language, same traditions, same music. The topic of reunification is controversial since Russia (Stalin) moved lots of Russian people to the area since 1945 and sent romanians to Siberia. But even so, traditions remained the same and even Russian born singers like Roman from zdub and zdob love this.
The reunification topic is quite uncontroversial since Putin’s invasion of Ukraine though. Moldova appeared to be next on the hit list.
I like this song very much and wish them goed luck
These lyrics are in the “High IQ lyrics” category, for sure! I LOVE THIS!
It’s an important message and a beautiful way to mark the return of the train running between Chi?in?u and Bucharest. May the song be played on continuous loop across all the carriages for as long as the service runs!
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