So here we are in 2012. Another year in which Eurovision has yet to happen, and here we stand teetering on the brink of another national finals season. With a contest which will be late in more ways than one, falling as it does right at the end of May, and – for the people in Baku at least – in the middle of the night. And once again the Swiss and the Albanians have beaten everybody to the touch by having chosen their songs already.
This year Switzerland, fresh from the sweet smell of – well, reaching the final for the first time in yonks, even if they did finish last in the entire world – were first out of the gate, playing host to a final which included a song from the contest’s first ever winner, Lys Assia. Sadly for the 87-year-old a return to the Eurovision stage was not to be, as her song C’etait Ma Vie was ultimately beaten by a pair of young whippersnappers called Sinplus and a track called Unbreakable. Which isn’t bad at all in a sort of ‘this doesn’t have a cat’s chance in hell of winning but we quite like it anyway’ sort of a way, but is it just us or does this sound a teeny weeny bit like The Killers’ Mr Brightside? Judge for yourselves, people:
Onwards to Albania, and in a Festival i Kenges full of songs which can only be described as ‘better’ (and included 2007’s representative Frederick Ndoci, he of the memorable pudding bowl haircut) this little number, Suus by Rona Nishliu ultimately triumphed. Now, since our Albanian’s a bit rusty and we found ourselves faced with a long list of song titles which made no sense to us whatsoever, we took the liberty of putting them all through an English-Albanian translator online and discovered what most of them meant. Except that is for this one, which translates as, er, ‘Suus’. We’re guessing it’s not a heartfelt ballad about the author of the Cat In The Hat, but if anyone can enlighten us further then do please get in touch.
As for the song itself….well let’s be honest it’s a bit of a messy effort which is around 47 minutes long (or at least feels like it is) and is backed by some slightly worrying screeching from the winsome Ms Nishliu. That said, we’re not going to file it under ‘no-hoper’ just yet given that the Albanians always do a clean-up job on their song and it always ends up sounding comparatively different by the time the contest rolls around. There is a kernel of a decent tune in there and potentially this could be OK in a Slovenia 2011 sort of way but they’re going to have to do some serious work on it to get it up to scratch. And somebody PLEASE buy the woman a hairbrush:
Coming soon: Denmark, Belarus and Malta. Which contrary to popular rumour is not being represented by Russell Grant. If it were we might find ourselves having to watch THIS in Baku (we know, we know, this clip has nothing to do with Eurovision. But it is damned funny):