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Archive for February, 2012

Oh and just in case you hadn’t heard….

Posted by DINRIL on February 25, 2012

…..Jedward WON the Irish final last night. Don’t start acting all surprised (and was it us or did Niamh Kavanagh and co just sound a bit like they were going through the motions before the boys took to the stage with their inevitable winning performance?). In case you missed it look below. Go on, you know you want to:

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Posted in Eurovision 2012, Ireland | 2 Comments »

We Know A Man Who Can….

Posted by DINRIL on February 25, 2012

Are we all a-flutter with the rumours that the UK representative is being announced at midnight tonight? Er, maybe. Actually we’re torn between staying up till midnight waiting for something to happen a la New Year’s Eve or just going to bed. In the mean time, however, we shall use this window of opportunity to bring you the Turkish entry, Can Bonomo’s Love You Back – aka the Marmite song of 2012 in that you’ll either love it (we do) or be left utterly cold by its ethno-pop stylings. Then again Greece had a similar impact last year and look how well that did. Oh make your own minds up already:

Posted in Eurovision 2012, Turkey | 1 Comment »

Put it back already!!

Posted by DINRIL on February 23, 2012

So how excited were we, exactly, when we heard that Izabo were going to be representing Israel in Baku? Very very excited, as it happens, because we’ve been a fan of their retro-era psychedelic stylings for years, ever since there was a slightly half-hearted attempt to launch them in the UK around 2004 (with a track called Morning Hero. Go on, look it up. You’ll thank us). And right now, we would love to be able to bring you their Eurovision entry Time, a sneak peek of which leaked on to the Interweb a few days ago about a week before it was due to be officially unveiled on Israeli TV. However due to circumstances beyond our control (otherwise known as ‘some spoilsport removing it’), we are unable to do so. Which is a pity, because from the bit we heard it’s quite possibly our favourite entry so far this year – original, quirky and fun without actually slipping into novelty territory. Still, the finished version is officially being unveiled on March 1 so you’ll be able to hear it then you lucky lucky people. In the mean time this pointless bit of nostalgia may help you pass the time…..

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Go East? Er, no thanks….

Posted by DINRIL on February 23, 2012

Why are we beginning to get the distinct impression that the Eurovision crown may be heading back westwards this year? Could it have something to do with this trio of not-quite-so-lovelies which were chosen over the weekend perchance? Let’s start with the Ukrainian entry this year, Gaitana’s Be My Guest which swept to a blindingly obvious victory last Saturday during a national final in which the judges greeted all the other entries with polite applause and slightly bored expressions, only to break into a rapturous standing ovation when our winner had finished her song. Anyway, Be My Guest is an anthemic little dance number aimed at welcoming visitors to the country for the forthcoming Euro 2012 championships (as in those which Poland is co-hosting, and which resulted in them saying they were too busy to take part in Eurovision this year. Yes. That’ll be it. Not even partially a discreet flounce based upon the fact you came LAST IN THE ENTIRE CONTINENT IN 2011.). And Gaitana is part Ukrainian, part Congolese. Hang on a second. Football anthem? Part Congolese? Didn’t France do this in 2010? Oh whatever. It’s not their finest hour, but this is Ukraine, who as we all know could sneeze in a bucket for three minutes and still make the final:

 

 

Probably the less said about the next two the better. Latvia came up with an utterly bizarre final on Saturday night which made us almost long for the ridiculousness of UK rap acts and, er, Scooch as a cavalcade of mad people dressed in Willy Wonka costumes, medievally dressed bands playing the lute and a woman wearing a giant wedding cake took to the stage. But the eventual winner was this, the slightly tongue-in-cheek Beautiful Song by Anmary. Bit of a divisive effort this one, with some actually quite liking it and others failing to see the irony behind lyrics which include ‘I was born in a distant 1980, the year that Irish Johnny Logan won’. (what, not 1987?) Er, yes, and I was born in 1971, the year that Monaco scored their one and only victory, what of it?? On this basis, we are already looking forward to Eurovision 2042, which may well feature a song that begins, ‘I was born in 2012, the year that Latvia single-handedly failed to make it out of the semi-final yet again:

 

And then we have Georgia’s effort, in which Anri Jokhadze informs us ‘I’m A Joker’. You are indeed, aren’t you? Ahem.

 

Still, there was one redeeming feature over the weekend, and that was the lovely Nina Badric from Croatia revealing her entry Nebo, aka Heaven. Not a lot to say about this since we didn’t have the added entertainment of a national final to sit through but this is a nicely stirring ballad which may yet redeem the Eastern Bloc. And we bet she’ll belt it out on the night.

And on that note we are off for a nice lie-down…..

Posted in Croatia, Eurovision 2012, Eurovision News, Georgia, Latvia, Ukraine | Leave a Comment »

If at first you don’t succeed…..

Posted by DINRIL on February 12, 2012

In the words of Lady Bracknell, ‘To lose Eurovision once might be regarded as misfortune, to lose it twice is sheer carelessness.’ Not that such blatant mangling of Oscar Wilde has stopped Jedward from having another crack at the Song Contest title after spreading Jedmania all across Dusseldorf last year. Now initially we weren’t too keen on this idea, but then we heard the song – and we have to say that this year’s effort Waterline is actually pretty decent. It’s a good solid pop tune reminiscent of McFly and the like – and while they haven’t actually won the Irish final yet, at this stage it just seems like a formality.

What is interesting though is that we can’t help but have a spot of admiration for the way the stack-haired twosome’s Eurovision career has been managed. Last year the initial scepticism over them entering was tempered by the fact that Lipstick was a darned good pop song – albeit a song that still had the potential to do well regardless of who was singing it. Then the rest of Europe fell in love with the lads and their shiny jackets and suddenly they were serious contenders for the title. And very well they did too.

This year however things are a little different. Jedward are now ridiculously popular around Europe, so you would think they’d just churn out some identikit not-quite-as-good entry, sit back and wait for their fan base to vote them into the final. Not so. For they’ve got a song under their belts which is stronger, better and altogether more credible than the one they entered last year – and on that basis, should they win the Irish ticket to Baku, we don’t see how they can fail to do very well indeed. Whoever is choosing the songs for these two, you have to admit they’re doing a pretty good job.

And while we’re at it, we should also like to express a sigh of relief that Jedward are making their Eurovision bid for Ireland and not for the UK. Because you can guarantee if they were representing the latter that they would basically be regarded as some ridiculous novelty act and given a borderline comedy song to sing in which they had to dress up as giant chickens. Or something. Either way it wouldn’t be pretty. And we sincerely doubt it would sound anything like this:

 

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Shall we do a round-up then?

Posted by DINRIL on February 12, 2012

Gosh, sorry for being so behind in the current round of Eurovision mayhem (except we’re not really because you will also notice we are including the results of tonight’s shenanigans here). Once again a little thing called life managed to get in the way of our ability to blog. But anyway, here we are, with a big stack of songs for Baku – beginning with the French effort. Now we rather put our foot in it last year when we suggested that the Gallic opera lad might just walk away with Eurovision honours – only for him to flounder hopelessly as a result of his frightened rabbit appearance on the night. We suspect that the lovely Anggun however will do no such thing with this odd but very likeable effort Echo (You and I). And is it just us or does this have shades of Georgia 2007 about it (which in turn means it has shades of Madonna?) You decide:

And so to Malta, who chose their entry last weekend in their usual understated, short (well by their standards anyway) final – which we once again struggled to make head or tail of. Who was that random woman playing piano at the start? Why did the introduction go on so long? Where was Chiara? How could Claudia Faniello possibly be snubbed again? Should we stop asking questions? Anyway, following a scoring process which was almost as exciting as the contest itself and seemed to feature random people from all over the continent, this man, Kurt Calleja, was chosen with his song This Is The Night. And you know what? Meh. Claudia was better. There’s nothing wrong with this song exactly – and we’ve made it abundantly clear in the past just how much we love Malta’s enthusiasm for all things Eurovision – but this is already shaping up to be a strong year, and we sense this song will struggle to make an impact. Eleventh place in the semi again, maybe?

So that was last week, now on to this week, and let’s start with Hungary.  And having produced one of our favourite songs of 2011 in the shape of Kati Wolf’s What About My Dreams (even if the lady herself – who appeared on tonight’s national final in verbose mode, was mildly terrifying), they haven’t done too badly this year either. This year’s effort is by Compact Disco (which might just be the best name for a band EVER) and is called Sound Of Our Hearts. We quite like it. That is all:

Norway, meanwhile, rejected the charms of folk band Plumbo (possibly because they sound like the sort of people you would call out when your toilet gets blocked) in favour of this chap, Tooji – aka ‘this year’s Eric Saade’ – with this song, Stay. And it is actually quite fabulous. Except of course it’s too soon for Norway to win the contest again. Isn’t it. Isn’t it?

And finally we come to Iceland, who have opted for a big dramatic ballad this year in the shape of Jonsi and Greta’s Mundu Eftir Mer. We’ll be honest, we weren’t expecting to like this. We didn’t like it last time Jonsi entered a ballad for Eurovision in 2004, in fact we hid under the sofa cushions and pleaded with the producers to make it stop. This, on the other hand, is a very pleasant surprise – it’s strong, it’s performed well, it has violins. Could we possibly have another Icelandic dark horse on our hands?

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