Category Archives: Eurovision 2010

Eurovision: Review of the Final.

This will get updated a few times before I finish, because blah blah blah.

I couldn’t see the beginning (screw TVE), but I know it had Alexander Rybak with a slow version of Fairytale and stuff. Whatever. Russia did it better, honestly.

And up to the songs!

Azerbaijan: Safura – Drip Drop.

That’s it, Safura! Take out the barechested dancers, and with them all that could possibly be interesting in your act!  BTW, look at the skirt. This is the fashion I was talking about last post. However, her dress is great (there had to be something good here). For whatever the reason it was, she’s wearing half of a glove, and there’s a man in black parading on the stage. Are we supposed to recognize him?

At the middle of the song, she goes to the little sidestage, they start the fans and she goes super dramatic. And then forgets to go to the center and has to hurry back. I can’t help but laughing every time I see her run.
5th. O Rly, Europe?

Spain: Daniel Diges – Algo pequeñito.

I’m impressed. The choreographer got the dancers in the most akward positions ever conceived, told them to hold the poses… and they did. Then some fucker sneaks onstage and they don’t even blink. Then THE GUARDS go onstage after that loser and they act like they weren’t there. Then the fucker goes onstage again… oh, wait, no, this time it was the backing singer. Also, here’s a nice work witht the fireworks.  Anyway, talk about professionalism.
15th. I wouldn’t mind if he and Safura traded places.

Norway: Didrik Solli-Tangen – My heart is yours.

What a shame. Such a hot man, with such a beautiful face, and specially such an amazing voice, wasted on that lame song! You can see he’s doing his best, but it’s impossible to save the song. Poor boy, poor, poor boy.

And Norway went simple and elegant about the antics. In fact, I was surprised that they put a lot of things on the stage, and only use lights for most of the song, and fireworks for like the last five seconds.
20th. The song deserved it. The singer didn’t.

Moldova: Olia Tira and Sunstroke Project – Run away

Now here are the antics! Because if it weren’t for acts like this, the contest would be too cheap! A violinist on a spinning platform, with a skeleton fluorescent violin! A girl doing her best to look at her worst, and then a sax and ohwaitwhatthehellishedoing???!!! Dude! There might be kids watching! Stop doing… THAT to the sax! Two dudes open their shirts to see if they can smug the gay vote, and the violinist makes faces. This is great!
22nd. What?

Cyprus: Jon Lilygreen and the Islanders – Life looks better on spring.

Here we have a high school band going to Eurovision. With a sweet song and a cute singer. I’m in love with Jon and with the song. For once, Eurovision was fair and had them at least pass to the final. You can tell Cyprus is not used to it because they didn’t know there were antics to use. Just lights. Cyprus, oh, Cyprus, I love you!
21st. Justice is in the floor, sore and bleeding. That’s at least 18 places lower than it deserved.

Bosnia & Herzegovina: Vukasin Brajic – Thunder and Lightning

Hey, look! There’s a fog machine! And intermitent lights with sound effects so we can realize the song is about thunders. Subtlety seems to be out of fashion this year.  And we get soft rock. So soft he puts his guitar carefully on the floor instead of smashing it. Too soft.
17th. And yet too high for the song.

Belgium: Brendan Fraser Tom Dice and his guitar.

This is kinda hipocritical, you know. Dude sings about how he and his guitar fight alone against the world. Dude has backing singers. Dude is a reality show runner-up!

Even with that, I liked the idea of dude singing on the catwalk. It gave the song a more intimate, close feeling. If something could make me forgive dude, it would be that.
6th. Sigh.

(Excuse me, I’m going to replay Jon Lilygreen. If you want to go indie, that’s how you do it)

Serbia: Milan Stankovic – Ovo je balkan.

Milan has teleporting booths, ready to take us from Crap land… to Craptastic land! After I read the translation of the lyrics, and heard the Spanish version, I don’t know if he should be tarred and feathered for singing it, or congratulated for daring to sing it.

Same goes for the performance, the dresses, and well, basically everything. It takes the bad taste beyond the extreme, right where it starts to become awesome.
13th. I would still have kept it on the semi.

Belarus: 3+2 – Butterflies.

If you ever wanted to see the lovechild of Tinkerbell and Mr. Lordi, watch at these women: unfurling wings, but, unlike Mr. Lordi’s, they sparkle. If Tomii Putaansu ever saw this, I bet he’d run to his bed and cover his head with the blankets. It’s scary. (My brother, a die-hard alternative rock fan, watched this and said he would need therapy after that. He didn’t)

The dresses, though, are fabulous. There have been entire editions with less glitter. And they obviously glued their feet to the ground so they wouldn’t accidentaly move and… there were no antics. They even didn’t change the lights more than once. Wow. So over the top, and yet so classy.

And one last thing: you have three women and two men, and the only name you can come up with is 3+2? Subtlety is in the floor with it’s nose broken.
24th, because… I don’t know.

Ireland: Niamh Kavannagh – It’s for you

Now, this is how a diva takes the stage: In a spectacular way and wearing a gorgeous dress! Look at the backing singers…. they are so mesmerized by her diva power that they don’t move at all. She can sing, not so much as many say, but she can, and the song is good… but she’s late by like fifteen years.
23rd. Damn. Even Charlotte did better with “Hero”, and she was waaaay cheaper than this.

Greece: Giorgos Alkaios & Friends – OPA!

Here it comes: the most overrated song this year. The singer doesn’t have a remarcable voice, or a remarcable presence, he isn’t hot, the song is kinda plain and without a good choreography, and even if the backing dancers are hot, they forgot their leather suits and had to dance on their pajamas.

Oh, and he promised a big surprise, never before seen, and what do we get? Fireworks in he drums. Meh.
8th, because Greece ALWAYS makes top ten. The times they don’t deserve it too.

UK: Josh Dubovie – That sounds good to me.

I hate doing this. And I hate it because I like the song but… Josh can’t sing. Not a single note. I would actually cry if the song wasn’t so lightearted and happy. Oh, and it’s totally obvious that he hooked up with at least one of the backing dancers last night.

25th and last. Why, UK, why?

Georgia: Sopho Nizharadze – Shine

Let’s face it: She was the best singer in the final. If you don’t believe me, just watch. The guys take her by her lungs and shake her, and she still keeps the tune. Nothing can come after that. Add that these are the best male chests we’re gonna see on the night (I know, it’s sad) and we have a winning combination.

9th. Well done, girl.

Turkey: MaNgA -We could be the same.

We can say what we want, but at least they are original. Dark scenery, a robot shaking it’s ass, a guy with a Jesus Christ complex… rock music! Are we sure they are the Turkish representatives and not some folks who got on the wrong stage?

By the end of the song, the robot starts cutting itself open, and there’s a girl inside. I’m not sure what are they trying to say.  It’s a highly conceptual performance. Or total rubbish, I’m not sure what. And then, the girl goes and seduces the lead singer, and they almost kiss. But it would be too straight for the contest. May be they do know where they are.

2nd. I’m not sure if they deserve it.

Albania:  Juliana Pasha – It’s all about you.

We have a say here in Mexico: The rich gone poor still has more than the poore gone rich.  Juliana being a perfect example of this:  She got a fat violinist slave, Whoopi Goldberg as a backing singer, a bad haircut and a tamer version of her original self… and she still outpowers any other contestant. Right about time of a GREAT act this year.

My brother, who was hiding in his room, goes out just to say he has heard this song so many times he even knows the lyrics. He doesn’t, of course, but it’s true that I might have overplayed it… except that a song like this can never be overplayed. There’s never enough.

15th. Fuck you, Europe.

Iceland: Hera Bjork – Je ne sais quoi

Beware Hera Bjork! She’s bigger than you, she’s better than you, and now she has minions! Little Heras parading all over the stage! And the background lights look like the electricians are on acid!

This is the second song in a row my brother recognizes, and I’m sure I played this a lot less than Juliana’s. In case you needed a proof this song is terrific. I love you, Hera.

19th, because Europe is out of it’s collective mind.

Ukraine: Alyosha – Sweet people.

With all the problems in their national selection, the Ukrainian broadcaster messed up, and sent a hobo instead of Alyosha.

No, wait, it IS Alyosha, it’s only that she’s dressed like a hobo. If there was any justice in the world, this would sweep at the Barbara Dex Award.

(In case you wonder, it didn’t)

The song is super-dramatic, super-hard, super-fan-enhanced and plain super-boring. But at least she can sing, and gets kudos for being the only artist in the night who dared to go truly solo.

10th. Damn me if I know why.

France: Jessy Matador – Allez! Olá! Olé!

Everything, absolutely everything, is wrong with this act, in a way InCulto can’t even dream to achieve. First a dude villagepeopleing, then he moves like he’s looking for a beach, a girl sings a little, they shake their crotches, and a full 10 seconds of bottom-shaking. And the way he says hello to the camera is the most stupid thing you’re gonna se in this contest. Even worse than InCulto’s sparkly trousers. A girl spanks Jessy’s ass, and we see a good looking dude with a horrible voice. He rips his shirt, but the camera never focuses on his chest. Too sad. Not that it could save this… thing, but at least there would have been something good to look at.

The nonsense goes on for another minute, and they keep on moving and yelling after the music stops. Right when you thought it couldn’t get any dumber.

By this moment, my brother is in shock and needs to go back to his room. Poor child.

12th. Like WTF, Europe.

Romania: Paula Seling & Ovi – Playing with fire.

You can’t say they aren’t putting effort. They got glowing fingers and real fire. The song truly is about fire, got it? I would have preferred both of them holding flamethrowers, but I doubt Norway would be pleased if they actually “burned this place down”. Although I would have loved it.

3rd. May be if they had destroyed the stage it would have been fair.

Russia: Peter Nalitch & Band – Lost and Forgotten

After fire, we get SNOW. And really, really bad quality. So bad it becomes funny and gets my brother to the couch again. When Peter looks at the “photo” we start cracking down, and by the time they start the fans we’re almost rolling on the floor. Peter,  my dopamine levels thank you.

(Oh, and almost a year later, when I’m reviewing this, my bro still recognized the song in the first fifteen seconds. It was THAT funny)

11th. Apparently, Europe doesn’t know crap about music.

Armenia: Eva Rivas – Apricot Stone.

That’s it. Subtlety is officially dead.

And I’m not talking about the boobflash on the very beginning (although that was smooth as a rhino) , but about the show. She has an apricot stone, hidden in her hand. You get it? Just like in the lyrics! And in case you haven’t got the idea yet, there’s an Eva-sized apricot stone in the middle of the stage.

And subtlety isn’t the only thing dead here. They also killed the act. It was perfect as it was in the national final! I don’t care if that guy is a national legend, or if you’re aiming for the Oldest People in Eurovision Record: KEEP. THE. HOOD.

KEEP. THE . SIMPLICITY.

And specially, KEEP. THE. DRESS. You don’t put jeans on a girl who’s singing an ethnic ballad. You just don’t, Armenia.

7th. Sigh.

Germany: Lena – Satellite.

There have been three times in the contest when I can tell for sure the victory has been because of politics: 1990 (Italy), 2003 (Turkey) and 2007 (Serbia).

This year isn’t so blatant, but yet I suspect Merkel’s hands had to do with Lena winning. Because Germany is paying the crisis for everybody else, and because I can’t see anything that would make this a worthy winner. They kept it in the same half-good level it has on the preview.

1st. I guess no other country was willing to pay for next year’s contest.

Portugal: Filipa Azevedo – Há Dias Assim

Now, this is one who did improve: her singing got better, her makeup got better, and even the dress got better. Not enought to take her to the big leagues, but it’s a worthy effort. Some moments she even looks pretty.

I have to say I admire Portugal’s determination… or cluelessness. They refuse totally to acknowledge the fact that any language other than English just doesn’t have a chance, and keep on sending their songs, in their language. That’s brave.

18th.

Israel: Harel Skaat – Milim

Another stubborn country. Less than Portugal (Or say… Spain or France), but yet, they stick to their own language more than most countries. And man, don’t they do an awesome job. Harel is gorgeous, the song is gorgeous and the stage show is gorgeous. He could have sung better, though, but with those looks I’m willing to forgive him almost anything.

14th. Too low.

Denmark: Chaneé & N’evergreen – In a moment like this

After all this, Denmark comes to teach us how you’re supposed to put on a good stage show, and suddenly they look like the only ones who truly know what they’re doing.

N’evergreen lost his suit and borrowed Juliana’s, even if it looked better on her. Chaneé is wearing a weird dress, and when the fans start I worry, because if they can move his hair that way, what won’t they do to her skirt. But somehow the skirt survives, and they go on to an epic closure. Way to make everybody else look like amateurs, Denmark.

4th. And well earned.

Then Spain goes to perform again, this time without intruders, we get a flashmob that most of people loved (I found it boring, except for the Verka Serduchka cameo), here come the votes and Lena wins. Bleh.

Alex Rybak goes onstage to give her the award and she asks him for a kiss. He points to his cheek. Bitch kisses him on the mouth and poor Alex runs away as fast as he can. I would too, totally. Then he tries to cover up urging the crowd to cheer for Lena. I won’t, sorry.

That was it. The top five, according to Europe, was:

1. Germany
2. Turkey
3. Romania
4. Denmark
5. Azerbaijan

My personal top five was:

1.  Albania
2. Cyprus
3. Iceland
4. Georgia
5. Denmark

The couch’s top five was:

1. Iceland
2. Spain
3. Albania
4. Denmark
5. Cyprus

Off to the next year.

In later news, Lena’s gonna represent Germany again. Sorry, but I don’t think the trick will work twice, so a Satellite clone won’t do. And everything that isn’t a Satellite clone would need more than Lena’s capable of, so I predict a bottom ten placing for Germany. Maybe even a bottom five.

Eurovision Review: Semi 2

Lithuania: InCulto- Eastern European Funk.

And the third one to the sack: this was not a good year for the Baltic States. Now, this is at the same time better and worse than Latvia and Estonia, because at least it’s interesting to watch. It starts like epileptic bartenders, goes downhill to stupid, then becomes so stupid it’s brilliant… and then jumps into being even more and more dumb. It takes talent to be under the bottom at that level, sure.

(Although I have to admit something: The background lights? The figures mimicking the singers? This was cuuuuuute and is, by far, the best use of that senseless lights this year. You win, InCulto)

Switzerland: Michael Von Der Heide – Il pleut de L’or

I wouldn’t call it outstanding, but sure it’s a solid performance, with a good use of the fans and the lights and the every little antic that stage could offer. And WOW: a golden jacket with golden pants. I want some, even if they could get me a beating if I went out to the street wearing them.

Sweden: Anna Bergendahl – This is my life.

Stop the whining about the political voting, Sweden, because if any country has ever benefited with block votes it’s you. But honestly, with an act like this, not even you could pass. Everyhing in this act, absolutely everything, is wrong, except the lights and maybe the voice. But the dress is wrong, the backing singers are wrong (if you want her to look like solo, don’t show them), the body language, the final scream… this is too wrong, Sweden! Not even a magical guitar can save her.

If you had sent “Yes man” instead of this I would have voted you top ten, but not with Anna. Sorry.

Netherlands: Sieneke – Ik ben verliefd

If you consider this went right after Alyosha’s boring and depressing song, Shalalie’s lighthearted spirit becomes even more powerful and evident. How could this NOT be voted into the final, Europe? What the hell is wrong with you?

Slovenia: Ansambel Roka Zlindere & Kalamari – Narodnozabavni Rock.

They are doing an awesome work with the lights… and that’s all that can be said about this. They didn’t bother in getting new clothes, new choreography or new anything. The accordion guy is cute, though. If he asked, I’d do him.

Bulgaria: Miro – Angel si ti

No. Just no. What have you done, Bulgaria? You had a classic in your hands and you ruined it! Why did you have to make Miro sing in English? The song was perfect! You gain points for the extragay factor, but you lose them for everything else. Incluing Miro’s clothes.

Croatia: Femminem – Lako Je Sve

Here’s the new trend in the contest: Short skirts with a long tail in the back. If I haven’t mentioned it yet it’s because all the other acts featuring those skirts passed to the final. Femminem didn’t and that really bothers me. This song was good, the performance was good and the choreography was acceptable. And they had a couple of Catwomen!

What was going on in Europe’s minds when they voted Azerbaijan and Ukraine over this?

Don’t answer that.

Eurovision review: Semi 1

Yeah, almost a year after. Blame lots of things of STFU.

I will only review here the ones that didn’t pass, because I’m lazy.

Estonia: Malcolm Lincoln and Manpower 4 – Siren.

Well, at leas one song this year got the oblivion it deserved. I don’t understand how people can say it’s a masterpiece and too good for Eurovision.  It’s the closest a song with lyrics can get to abstract art. Yup, I don’t get it.

Slovakia: Kristina Pelakova – Horehronie.

The fact that this didn’t pass is, to say it mild, outrageous. Kristina, honey, you were robbed. But guess what? It was your own fault. Well, of your camera director. You had the best act in the contest and we couldn’t see it because all the takes were either close-ups, long range pans or taken in weird angles. I watched this and got the feeling of “WTF is going on in that stage”. Show me the choreography. SHOW ME THE CHOREOGRAPHY!

Finland: Kuunkuiskajat – Työlkii Elaä

And this… this is even more outrageous! They had the perfect mix of sillyness, fun and class. Oh, Finland, I love you!

Latvia: Aisha – What for?

What the hell is she wearing? And for what purpose? They plucked her eyebrows to make her gaze like Oliver Twist, and she’s wearing a big crucifix around her neck because otherwise we wouldn’t know her song is about God.  Oh, my. And we’ve not even started with the song and the voice. And we won’t because is too painful. If there’s something redeeming here is that we finally get to see the lights at work.

Poland: Marcin Mrozinski – Legenda.

I’m sorry… what was that about? I guess there was a story in there, with all the apples, strangulation and stuff  (Apple bowling! Brilliant!) but I got lost after the first minute.

Malta: Thea Garrett – My dream.

Really, dude, what do you have to do to qualify here? She has a good song, a great voice, a huge bird laying at her fet and bad hair! This act was perfect for Eurovision! Why, Mr. God, why?

Macedonia: Gjoko Taneski – Jas ja imam silata.

I wonder how much they paid to get Madonna as a backing dancer. And it didn’t paid off, mostly because a rapper sabotaged their act. Awful!

And that’s it. The non-qualifiers on the first semifinal.

Eurovision Junior 2010: Preview

Eurovision Junior 2010 is in two days or so and yup, I haven’t commented. And I’ve got an exam to study for tomorrow, so this is gonna be really fast:

All the preview videos and etceteras are here, and I’m only going to comment them:

Lithuania is sending Zac Efron… sorry, I just got messed up. His name is Bartas, he’s fourteen and really, what are childs eating in Lithuania? He looks like an 1.80m Ken doll. When he’s seventeen he’s not going to join a boyband: He’s going to BE a boyband. Why sharing the stage with other boys?

The song, Oki Doki, is what you could expect: pop-ish, electronical and factory made. I like it.  And Lithuania gains the dubious distinction of sending to the Junior contest a better act than the one they sent to the main one.

Moldova brings us Stefan Roscovan with Alli-Baba.

After watching the rehearsals, he’s my candidate for a potential darkhorse. This song can make a really good act with the right choreography. And I’d say he has it.

Netherlands has Anna and Senna with My Family.

Oh, my. I don’t speak Dutch, and yet I can realiza how awful these lyrics must be. There’s a thin line between political correctness and bad taste, and these girls felt in the wrong side. Even so, they’re cute (And have a violin, violins are awesome!), specially the one who looks like Natalie Portman.

From Serbia, Sonja Škori? with ?arobna no?.

So, this is why Ovo Je Balkan was so shitty: Sonja had taken all the quality Serbia was allowed to spend this year. Shame on you, Sebia, your Junior act is kilometers above the adult one. Sonja actually could represent her country in the adult contest without any shame… and she’s one of the few kids this year that can carry a good tune without trouble.

(And here we can see how JESC, just like ESC, has it’s own bandwagons for everybody to jump in. It’s obvious that, as past year a 14-year old won, this year many countries will send older kids. There are few with representatives under thirteen)

Ukraine sends Yulia Gurska with Miy Litak.

The song isn’t half bad, but it isn’t in the same league than the big players this year. And, considering how my instints work, it actually could win (I have never been good at guessing)

Representing Sweden, Josephine Ridell with Allt jag vill ha.

And 2010 will pass to the history as The Year Sweden sent Boring Songs to Eurovision. Like, really, really boring. Both of them.

Now, ¿Remember how, after their first victory with ABBA, Sweden has kept sending ABBA reprises to the main contest? ¿And remember how Russia won the Junior contest with a jazz act?

Well, they sent the Tolmachevy twin’s evil twin the following year, and now are trying to doit again: Sasha Lazin and Liza Drozd, with love from Russia, singing Boy and Girl. Just like the Tolmachevy sisters, but now with mixed genders!

Latvia brings Viva la Dance in the voice of Sarlote Lenmane and the Sea Stones.

Another one to the sack: Watch and learn, Aisha: this is how you represent your country in an international song contest: Holding your tune. She seems to be hot in the polls, and I wouldn’t be angry if whe won, even if she’s not my favorite.

Belgium sends Anna and Senna… wait, we already were through this, didn’t we?

Wait, sorry, my mistake: Belgium sends Jill and Lauren with Get Up!. They’re just like Anna and Senna, except that they sing better and their melody is worse.

Armenia somehow managed to clone Dino Jelusic, speeding the clone’s growth so it looks like he’s twelve, called him Vladimir Arzumanyan and sent him to sing Mama. The problem is that they didn’t get a song as good as Dino’s, but this kid can sing and has lots of charm, so I’d say he stands a chance. But again, don’t trust my instinct.

(Besides, the fact that I think in three years from now he’s going to be an awfully hot dude makes me feel biased. And guilty)

Nicole Azzopardi, singing Knock knock! Boom boom!, comes from Malta.

One of the many things I hated about Safura’s Drip drop, (besides the song being completely pointless) was the way Safura moved to it. She tried to “drip drop” with her hands and head… and failed. Nicole, obviously, doesn’t have a problem. She knocks just like you’re supposed to knock when you’re knocking. Besides, she’s cute, has personality, and the song is one of the best this year. Go Nicole!

Belarus forgot to send a song.

Really.

Well, actually not, but Daniil Kozlov singing Muzyki Svet makes you wish they had. The song is bad, he can’t sing and there’s no way to fit a choreography in it. Damn, I miss Alexei. I even miss Ksenia. And the guys who sang Tantsui. What happened to you, Belarus?

Now let’s come to Georgia. Either I’m high or… no, I’m not high. They’re actually sending one of those songs: Mari-Dari, by Mariam Kakhelishvili.

¿Remember that Sweden won with ABBA? Now, remember how Georgia won JESC with an acid trip in a made up language? Well, they’re trying to get Europe to buy that again, but this time is even worse. This time it’s a solo girl. With minions. It’s scary.

And finally, Macedonia has Anja Veterova with Eooo, eooo.

JESC has got it’s own Aisha this year: Anja suffers of a very gross case of the Aisha disease. The song would actually be pleasant if she didn’t yell.

If I were a country, my points would be this way:

12 for Malta

10 for Latvia

8 for Serbia

7 for Armenia

6 for Moldova

5 for Lithuania

4 for Russia

3 for Netherlands

2 for Georgia

1 for Macedonia+

0 for Ukraine, Sweden, Belarus and Belgium.

Road to Eurovision 2010: Semi 2

We’re over with semi 1, now it’s time for the second semifinal preview (The five countries with direct ticket to the final will have a post of their own).

Disclaimer: This will get updated a lot, because there are 17 songs to be reviewed and I won’t do all of them at once, so if you get here and it’s not over, come back in a few days, OK?

And now:

Lithuania: InCulto – Eastern European Funk

According to Wikipedia, Lithuania was centimeters close to withdraw prior to this contest, until the telecommunications company Teo LT donated money so they could afford sending an act.

Watching this makes me wish Teo LT had decided to use their money to buy free ponies for lithuanian kids or something just as useful, instead of financing a shameful act. Like, really.

I know it’s supposed to be experimental music, and the beginning is way one of the most interesting thing I’ve seen this year, but from then everything goes downhill in so many ways it’s almost unbelievable that much badness is packed in only 2:44.

First, the fake instruments. I have no clue in what bloody universe this can be taken seriously. Right, Ksenia Sitnik did it back in 2005 and won with it, but it was the Junior Contest and she was ten years old. And she did it in a moderately cool way, not even getting close to the atrociousness we see here.

And then, the glittery underwear. (No, those are not shorts, they’re underwear, trust me) Yeah, Eurovision is Gay Territory, but there are certain things only allowed to Verka Serduchka, and even she made it into full suits. No gay points here because it’s done without class.

You, guys, are hot, but if you want to show your thighs, you better do it while showing also your bare chests. Having those trunks with shirts and ties is not hot, is not something I want to look at and is not… just not.

The good news: you still can do it. The music is good and interesting and you can sing, so just drop the fake instruments and, for God’s sake, rip your shirts instead of your pants.

Armenia: Eva Rivas – Apricot Stone

¡OMG! ¡Angelina Jolie is taking part in Eurovision Song Contest!

Sorry, no, just a lookalike, who I guess sings way better than Angelina and does a great, great job. This somehow reminds me Sertab Erener’s “Every way that I can”, but with style. Eva has winner quality, something I’m sorry to say Sertab didn’t have. (Yeah, I just said the 2003 winning song has no style or winner quality, and I stick with it).

The only thing I’m unhappy with is that Eva moves too much. It does’nt fit the song. But even so, this is the second time (after Kristina, of course) that I say: Now we’re talking.

Israel: Harel Skaat – Milim

First, let me drool a little. Harel’s got the kind of handsomeness only jewish genes can give. He’s like Yuval David, only less cute. (Once I got to see a man like these two live, and in person they’re even more breathtaking)

Second, let me drool a little more. Not about the minimalist stage, but about the lighting. I don’t know who did it, but I love them.

About the song, this will be the first man entering the Winner Quality Club, because yes, he does have it. I could see this song going high in a non-Eurovision way: they drop everything that is not necessary, abandoning the fireworks, the choreography and the backing stuff, so everything here is to serve the song, and it’s done amazingly. They turn what otherwise would be a dull song (compare with “Thunder and Lightning”) into a wonderful act.

Also, I could see it going high in an Eurovision way because, as I said, Harel is gorgeous. The only bad thing is his body language: he bends so much it looks like his back hurts or something.

Denmark: Chanée & N’evergreen – In a moment like this.

Wow. Just WOW.

A gorgeous stage, a wonderful performance with Wind Machine and Blinding Lights included, taking us really close for a third Winner Quality Act in a row. The only reason they aren’t is because the song is too simple and Chanée’s geisha makeup (Red Code in Denmark! Red Code in Denmark!). I don’t like the dress, but I guess we can get along with it. They also get gay points for looks. On both of them.

So, they’re a must and I’d like to see them passing and scoring high… maybe even winning, despite they’re below at least three songs in this contest.

Also, ¿Isn’t that guitar at the beginning stolen from the Carebears II movie ending?

Just listen:

Switzerland: Michael Von der Heide – I’ll pleut de’lor

Deen, you better run, because Michael Von der Heide might just be the gayest thing ever shown in Eurovision. It depends on the kind of pants he chooses to match his golden jacket (which I hope he keeps for the ESC performance, because golden jackets are awesome… damn, now I want one). He also has a great voice (the best in this semi so far), only that it’s wasted in a rather bland song.

Also, ¿Is he really hitting 40 years old? He looks a lot younger to me. Not handsome, but young… and that explains a lot about the gayness.

Sweden: Anna Bergendahl – This is my Life.

I watched the performance. I watched it again. And again. Still looking for something clever to say about it, and I didn’t find it. Is it a good or a bad thing?

The only thing to comment here is that there’s no fastest way to go from Best Dressed frontrunner to Barbara Dex Award frontrunner than wearing a totally classy white dress with totally classless pink (or are they red?) Converse shoes. Anna, even I know that.

Azerbaijan: Safura Alizadeh: Drip Drop

Warning: If you suffer epilepsia or thing you might, perhaps you shouldn’t watch this. The background screen caused me a headache, and I don’t suffer epilepsia.

The backing dancers, oh, those backing dancers! They’re just mesmerizing. Now I’m in trouble to choose between Giorgio’s and these ones. I didn’t hear the lyrics, or paid attention to Safura’s voice and performance. Whatever, I didn’t miss anything important.

I’d say the only chance to score this act has are the dancers (let’s face it, Safura is only an excuse to show off them) and the brilliant choreography.

Ukraine: Alyosha – Sweet People.

Here’s the full story: Ukraine internally selected the artist who would represent them. It’s not uncommon, in fact, it’s the same choosing procedure that gave us Ruslana and Ani Lorak.

They picked Vasyl Lazarovich and gave a national final, in which the song “I love you” was chosen:

It just happened this time people didn’t like the fact that the artist was handpicked, and so, less than week before deadline, a new national final was held and Alyosha was chosen, with “To Be Free”:

And then, they discovered “To Be Free” broke the rules in at least two different ways: It had been released two years before, and it also plagiarized some other song. So, Ukraine was in a no-win situation: they couldn’t send Alyosha with that song, and they couldn’t change it or withdraw it without a fine, because deadline had already passed. So they took the fine and changed it, which leads us to “Sweet People”.

Now, if only all that trouble had been worth it. They finally stuck with a profound, dramatic song with nothing remarkable, and a singer with a nice voice, but who suffers the same disease Aisha does. Europe really should think about making a vaccine.

Netherlands: Sieneke – Ich ben verliefd (Sha-la-lie)

This is from the same guy who composed the Smurf song. So Yeah.

Nope, it can’t be taken seriously. Nope, it can’t win, and I doubt it even make it to the final, and I still love it. Like Työlki ellää does in the first semi, Sha-la-lie is responsible for giving us a true funny moment to enjoy here, and take away seriousness for a while. Thanks, Sieneke.

And she can sing more than it might seem. Come on, listen to it again.

Romania: Paula Seling & Ovi: Playing with fire

Sorry, can somebody explain to me what I just watched?

Ok, he’s not so bad looking, she’s hot and wearing leather, they have a good translucent piano and, right when I was giving up my hopes, a “Fire/Desire” rhyme which, you know, is a Must here (a contest can’t properly call itself Eurovision if there isn’t a “Fire/Desire” rhyme) but somehow then you gather all of it together, nothing manages to make sense.

The song has some high points (Might be on the best songs in this semi) and Paula gives us an impressive vocal showoff as a bridge, but it doesn’t work. And it’s not only the fact that Ovi is so obviously gay that you can’t buy him singing those lyrics, its… something else. I don’t know what.

Slovenia: Ansambel Roka Žlindre & Kalamari – Narodno Zabavni Rock

Yeah, I get it. You’re merging folk with rock. That’s why the girl’s got what may likely be a Slovenian traditional outfit, while the guy is supossed to be a rocker.

You can bold “supossed” if you want. That’s not a proper rocker look.Lose the scarf, cut your hair shorter and grease it, and give him a full black shirt, with no prints on it. The idea is good and not so bad-done, but the looks have some trouble here.

Even so, although it’s a refreshing concept and so, I don’t see it getting in the final (neither in my wishes nor in reality),in spite of having the first stage in this semi actually worth drooling.

Edit: second, there’s also Denmark.

Ireland: Niam Kavanagh – It’s for you

Another pretty stage, nice. About the song…

Hum, not bad at all for a previous winner, but it’s too 1990’s and the 90’s have been over for a decade. This is not anymore the times where you could win only by having a decent song, singing it in a decent way and being Irish (which are all fully acomplished by Niam) so, even if this is good, doesn’t make the cut to winner quality.

However, if at the end I happen to have a free seat in The Five Who Should, it will probably go for her. Because, on top of all I wrote before, she also has great lighting and amazing hair. Well, everyone there has amazing hair.

Bulgaria: Miroslav Kostadinov “Miro” – Angel si ti

Wait. Is there really in nature facial hair featuring that color? I was so shocked the first time I saw it that I had to rewind and watch again. Yep, it IS that color.

You’ve got more than half the road walked, Miro, but if you’re going to pretend to lose your shirt, you better damn lose it and become the next Sakis. You’re hot enough to afford doing it.

Also, lose the chains. Completely. You don’t need them.

This is, in fact, really close to winner quality, it only needs a little more sophistication… which doesn’t mean “plastic”, by the way, don’t take me wrong. In fact, the opposite.

Cyprus: Jon Lilygreen and The Islanders

One of the true awesome consequences of having your chances dead even before you start is that you don’t have to make an effort to please everyone. That’s the case with Cyprus (And I’m not dramatizing: they have reached the bottom of top five only three times, and 2005 was the last time they made it to the final, and their best semi result was fouteenth)

In a nutshell, they’ve got nothing to lose, just like Andorra and Portugal, so they can send virtually anything. That’s the reason we got “Jugar’em a estimar-nos”, “Todas las ruas do amor”, and “Life looks better in spring”. This guy, singing this song, is like a Christmas present.

Forgive me if I get corny, but somehow I don’t even care by being almost certain that this won’t pass to the final. Having on the contest is enough. Thanks, Jon.

(Sorry if I got too heartfelt, but… well, I’m in love)

Croatia: Femminem- Lako je sve

I’d say we might have a winner for best lighting. Is this or Israel. Also, one of the most beautiful stages in the contest, a powerful, passionate song, and three girls strong enough to sing the song in the level it requires.

All that said: What, in Heaven’s name, are they doing on that stage? What’s-with-the-dance? This song doesn’t deserve that performance, it really does.

The good news is that even if the performance is not up to the song, they still could do it. Yeah, the song is that good.

Georgia: Sopho Niharadze – Shine

“Shine” is “Drip Drop”, but with better lyrics, a better singer, more class, and unfortunatelly, fully dressed backing dancers.

Now, I’m biased against this song because it has been overpromoted on Facebook, but looking through my bias, I’d say this is good. Not winner quality, but good.

Turkey: MaNga – We could be the same

Oh, now we have not only a “Fire/Desire” rhyme in this semi, but also a “Eyes/Surprise” one. Classic, guys, just classic. Not a Must, but almost. Couple it with a white outfit, Deli-like music and Hard Rock Hallellujah-ish lighting and fireworks, and we get officially the most eurovisive song on the semi. It also makes harder for me to pick who I want to pass, because this is quite good in a Deli-ish way.

Now, let’s end this with the nominations and awards for this semi:

The Five Who Should:
Eva Rivas, representing Armenia.
Harel Skaat, representing Israel.
Chanée & N’evergreen, representing Denmark.
Miro, representing Bulgaria.
Jon Lilygreen & The Islanders, representing Cyprus (again, dreams come for free).

The Five Who Shouldn’t:
InCulto, representing Lithuania.
Alyosha, representing Ukraine.
Anna Bergendahl, representing Sweden.
Ansambel Zlindra & Kalamari, representing Slovenia.
Paula Seling & Ovi, representing Romania.

If i had to complete the ten whom I want in the final, it would be Netherlands, Azerbaijan (just because I want to see those dancers twice), Switzerland, Croatia and Turkey.

Best Song: Angel si ti, by Miro.
Worst Song: Drip Drop, by Safura.

Best Performance: In a moment like this, by Chanée & N’evergreen
Funniest performance: Ich ben verliefd (Sha-la-lie), by Sieneke
Worst performance: Playing with fire, by Paula Seling & Ovi (yeah, they ruin a really good song, and it’s all in the performance)

Best Male Singer: Michael von der Heide, representing Switzerland.
Worst Male Singer: InCulto, but it’s only because I have to name somebody, they’re not that bad.

Best Female Singer: Sofia Niharadze, representing Georgia.
Worst Female Singer: Alyosha, representing Ukraine.

Best Idea Onstage: The translucent wall on In a Moment Like This, by Chanée & N’evergreen.
Stupidest Idea Onstage: Tie between the fake instruments and the shiny trunks in Eastern European Funk, by InCulto.

Best Dressed: Eva Rivas, Sieneke and Michael von der Heide (Golden jackets FTW!)
Frontrunners for the Barbara Dex Award: InCulto and Anna Bergendahl.

Best Teeth: Paula Seling, of course! Look at her teeth!

Comparing both semis, the second has a more consistent quality, in fact I had to force me a little to pick the last two on The Five Who Shouldn’t, as they’re not that bad (In semi 1, in the other hand, I had to handpick Macedonia to stay out of the list), and also had trouble picking the worst song. Chosing the best one was hard, too, because besides Bulgaria there were Armenia, Turkey and Cyprus.

Oddly, it seems Niam Kavanagh, who’s a previous winner, is the only one who didn’t get mentioned, for good or bad, in this list.

Now we’ve got only five songs left to review: the Big Four plus Norway, i.e: the ones with a direct ticket to the final. They’ll be reviewed on Monday, I hope.

Edit: Here’s the missing part: Vanity Fair, i.e: Beauty awards.

Best looks on a girl: Niamh Kavannagh. She looks great (and I had to include her somewhere)
Hottest girl: Paula Seling.
Cutest girl: Sieneke. Completely.

Best looks on a guy: Harel Skaat.
Hottest guy: Miro and his gymnasts.
Cutest guy: Is it really necesary asking? Ok, Jon Lilygreen.

Road to Eurovision 2010: Semi-1

Here we go: this is the preview for the first Semifinal on Eurovision 2010. There are ceirtan things I hope get changed for the actual performances on the contest, as these are only the ones on the national finals, but I think it gives us a glimpse about how it can get in time. The acts featured in this semifinal are listed below:

SunStroke Project and Olia Tira represent  Moldova with “Run Away”
Peter Nalitch and Friends represent  Russia with “Lost and Forgotten”
Malcolm Lincoln and Manpower 4 represent  Estonia with “Siren”
Kristina represents  Slovakia with “Horehronie”
Kuunkuiskaajat represent  Finland with “Työlki Ellää”
Aisha represents  Latvia with “What For?”
Milan Stankovi? represents  Serbia with “Ovo je Balkan
Vukašin Braji? represents  Bosnia and Herzegovina with “Thunder and Lightning”
Marcin Mrozi?ski represents  Poland with “Legenda”
Tom Dice represents  Belgium with “Me and My Guitar”
Thea Garrett represents  Malta with “My Dream”
Juliana Pasha represents  Albania with “It’s All About You”
Giorgos Alkaios and Friends represent  Greece with “OPA”
Filipa Azevedo represents  Portugal with “Há dias assim”
Gjoko Taneski, Billy Zver and Pejcin represent  Macedonia with “Jas ja imam silata“
3+2 represent  Belarus with “Butterflies”
Hera Björk represents  Iceland with “Je ne sais quoi”

The rest of the post, under a cut because so many youtube videos make some browsers crash:

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