Eurovision 2019 – an irreverent love-in Guide to the Songs

 

A list of comments as I watched, with a few add-in’s where I was hopelessly wrong or pleasantly right….

 

1. Malta | Michela | Chameleon:

Nice to see Malta in the final. The verses are fab, in the style of the late Avicii, the chorus is a bit naff, but it’s got that 2010’s vibe overall, and a great way to start the show, she does a fab performance and won me over. 78/100

    2. Albania | Jonida Maliqi | Ktheju tokës:

Darkly-dressed lady, ethnic rhythms. The black lace frills and golden earrings work, not sure about the wailing. She gives some wallop vocally, but that doesn’t disguise a morose melody. I feel I should like it more than I do, as I enjoy ethnic toons. 55/100.

  3. Czech Republic | Lake Malawi | Friend of a friend:

Smiley canary-coloured singer, drummer clearly not drumming, and a mockney accent, sort of gentlejazzboyband. Mildly pleasant in bland Hue & Cry fashion (80’s jazzed-up band), enjoyed the windows featuring again in the visuals. 63/100

  4. Germany | S!sters | Sister:

They’re tired poor dears. Know how they feel, I’m effin’ knackered. Presumably adopted sisters, as I see no resemblance. This P!nk-inspired current obsession with using “!” instead of “i” is getting on my t!t. It’s OK, nothing bad, nothing great. 66/100

  5. Russia | Sergey Lazarev | Scream:

Sergey’s gone overboard on the hair gel. I find myself talking about the dress-sense rather than the song. Just as well, or I’d be screaming too. Earnest, yet strangely forgettable. Great singer though. 58/100

  6. Denmark | Leonora | Love is forever:

Pretty little ditty this one, I hope they all sit on the giant chair and sway comically together in unison. Oh good here, come the ladders. Hope they don’t fall! That would change the mood a bit. 70/100

  7. San Marino | Serhat | Say na na na:

33,000 population. Not so much a country as a suburb of Bournemouth. Under those circumstances, the Leonard-Cohen-voiced disco oldie is a pretty good effort. No chance of big points of course, disco always dies the death at Eurovision. Cheesy and repetitive. I quite like it. 60/100

  8. North Macedonia | Tamara Todevska | Proud:

Green-frocked blonde gives a piano-led low-key ballad. Adele could probably have jazzed it up a bit more. A bit dull for me. It’s not bad as such, but I’d never sing along to it. Not unless I was blind drunk and it was the only song on the screen in a karaoke bar and they wanted everyone to leave quickly. 50/100

  9. Sweden | John Lundvik | Too late for love:

He co-wrote our UK song, and has a great voice. Must have pissed himself laughing at fobbing that one off when he had this one for himself. It’s very John Legend and a great hook to it, though as a cohesive whole, it’s lacking in parts. Rousing with those backing ladies, though. Best track so far. 82/100

  10. Slovenia | Zala Kralj and Gašper Šantl | Sebi:

Are the horror-movie vampire lovers simpering along to each other? They really should be dressed in black, and singing it over the end of a Twilight movie credits. Poor young dears can’t afford trousers that fit them, so we should be kind. Not a winner. 45/100

  11. Cyprus | Tamta | Replay:

Still pissed Fuego didn’t win last year. Best Eurovision song of 2018. She’s had a few tips from Madonna on dress sense, but she hasn’t the legs for leather/pvc. The song, though, is really bangin’. Great dance rhythms, at last 11 songs in we’re getting to the good stuff. 88/100

  12. Netherlands | Duncan Laurence | Arcade:

Bought this before I knew it was a Eurovision track, the song style is very Coldplay (as commentator Graham Norton stole my thunder stating, how very dare he). The best actual SONG in the contest, which is why it’s been a hit in Europe already. I would be happy for it to win [NB yay it won!], but it takes a couple of listens to register properly. Just fab, sung well, no flash outfits, no stage gimmicks. 95/100

  13. Greece | Katerine Duska | Better love:

Very hippie frilly lace-obsessed, expecting Swan lake! Her voice is unusual and endearingly off-key at times, though I like the stomping chorus. A bit odd, a bit OK. 68/100

  14. Israel | Kobi Marimi | Home [defending champions]:

The Kobyashi Maru was a test in Star Trek with no winning solution. The Kobi Marimi was the earlier version, also with no winning solution. Dinner jackets? Check. Operatic pop? check. Leaves me cold? Check. Look at the size of my errr vocals. Biased crowd much! 47/100.

  15. Norway | KEiiNO | Spirit in the sky:

Already in the UK itunes charts this one (ie the ones that make up 5% of the actual chart “sales”) and quite deserves to be big. The 3-vocalist set-up has personality, the big Avicii-ish arrangements and chorus are fab, the hooks great, the bald novelty hey-o’s work in small doses, and a great tune. Contender to win, easily [NB it won the popular vote quite rightly]. Possibly my fave! Love it 97/100

  16. United Kingdom | Michael Rice | Bigger than us:

Not even the best version of this song in the UK A Song For Europe, so not normally expecting great things were it not for the number of duff songs this year. It must be pretty big if it’s bigger than him and his partner. It’s not bad, quite reasonable in comparison, really. He has a good voice and gave it wollop. 74/100

  17. Iceland | Hatari | Hatrið mun sigra:

They’ve escaped from the Gran Canaria fetish week by the looks of it. Where’s the gimp masks? They want to be Slipknot basically, with a hint of Depeche Mode synths. The shouty one can carry off the leather trousers though. I mean I wouldn’t play it again, but I approve of being different. 57/100

  18. Estonia | Victor Crone | Storm:

He has a good pop-star face, a nicely country-ish style, and a very catchy Eurovision singalong chorus that builds. Now this is the sort of bloody song called Storm the UK should be entering and this is bloody Estonia, not the all-conquering UK music scene! Pretty good. 86/100

  19. Belarus | Zena | Like it:

16 is barely legal, so the boots are prob a bit dodgy. Kids will love this one though, identifying with it, and it sounds 2019. It’s professional, has a chart-hit song structure to it, should do well [oops it didn’t!]. 84/100

  20. Azerbaijan | Chingiz | Truth:

Truth be told, he’s hot, the track is fab, and the robot-workers don’t hurt. Got to hand it to Azerbaijan, all that oil money goes towards buying the best songs they can get, are you listening skinflints BBC? Of course not. Classy, and what a fab hook. One of the best 5 or 6, easily. 92/100

  21. France | Bilal Hassani | Roi:

Think the singer has modelled themself on Game Of Thrones Dragon Queen so it’s odd the song is called “King”. Full marks for the stereotype-breaking performance & dancers, but the song is shrill and annoying. One of my least-fave French entries in years 53/100

  22. Italy | Mahmood | Soldi:

What no opera? No torch ballads? No it’s Italian rap with some singing. He can carry it off. Great eyes, naff shirt. The track’s one of the better, classier, more original and contemporary songs. Like it. 83/100

  23. Serbia | Nevena Božović | Kruna:

It’s Serbia so it must be another funeral song. Sure enough. I approve of the dustbin lid recycling as a neck ornament and the Wonder Woman bracelets. That’ll be handy to metaphorically dodge all the bullets music fans metaphorically aim at her. Got a gob on her though, and that always goes down well. 52/100

  24. Switzerland | Luca Hänni | She got me:

Luca is very endearing, good-looking lad, and the Latin rhythms are also irresistible. The Dirty Dancing refs will go down well, and it’s a proper bangin’ dance tune. Honestly I would SO dance to this in a Gran Canaria club after a couple of bacardi & cokes. Swing those hips! 90/100

  25. Australia | Kate Miller-Heidke | Zero gravity:

OK, it would be fab if this operatic odd tune had some balancing on the end of poles as if they were defying gravity. Oh f… it, it works! You’d have to have a heart of stone not to love her. The song isnt in anyway the best song in the competition (it’s all over the place stylistically), but its memory will last decades. Frozen fans will love it. 91/100

  26. Spain | Miki | La venda:

It’s got energy, and  great performance to end on. In a normal year this might go top 5 [err bottom in the popular vote cos a) Spanish music rhythms bomb in eurovision and b) everyone buggers off for a cuppa tea when the last song comes on)? There are 10 fab entries and 16 yawnsome ones. 83/100

 

RESULTS:

 

MINE:

  1. Norway 2. Netherlands 3. Azerbaijan 4. Australia 5. Switzerland 6. Cyprus 7. Estonia 8. Belarus 9. Italy 10. Spain

FINAL RESULT:

  1. Netherlands 2. Italy 3. Russia 4. Switzerland 5. Norway 6. Sweden 7. Azerbaijan 8. North Macedonia 9. Australia 10. Iceland

PUBLIC VOTE:

  1. Norway 2. Netherlands 3. Italy 4. Russia 5. Switzerland 6. Iceland 7. Australia 8. Azerbaijan 9. Sweden 10. San Marino

So, 6 of the final top 10 were in my top 10 faves, and 6 of the public vote (Sweden were my 11th fave so pretty much 70% in both cases) but the public vote matches my top 2 and 3 of the top 5 exactly. Bring back public votes only!

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