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Things we have learned from the semi-finals part 962….

Posted by DINRIL on May 16, 2013

…..that the lyric in Belgium’s Love Kills is actually ‘waiting for the bitter pill’. And all this time we have been trying to work out what a ‘beat appeal’ is, exactly…..

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Tonight….

Posted by DINRIL on May 26, 2012

…..you can find your editor here.

 

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Welcome to the Live Blog!

Posted by DINRIL on May 16, 2009

The National Lottery is drawing to a close, the crisps have been laid out and we are all poised to bring you our liveblog coverage of Eurovision 2009. Bring it on……

2000 GMT Te Deum is sounding decided 21st Century these days, and ooooooh look, we are in Moscow. Time for Graham Norton to make his debut……

2001 Cirque de Soliel kick things off, telling the story of how last year’s winner Dima Bilan went off round the world seeking his fortune and became a star. Russian dolls and weirdness abound.

2003 There are peasant women and fireeaters on stage. Am scared.

2004 They’ve gone. And heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeere’s Dima, flying in on wires. He is going to sing a souped-up version of Believe by the sound of it. Spectacular stuff.

2007 Dima is singing Believe. Ooooooh, we like this one, can we vote for it?

2009 Dima has more than six people on stage with him. We seem to recall this is not allowed under the rules of Eurovision…..

2010 Our hosts Alsou (who came second for Russia in 2000) and Russian celebrity Ivan Urgant take to the stage. She looks like one of those dolls you stick over toilet roll holders

2012 The first song! It’s Lithuania. A huge cheer greets him. But we still don’t like it.

2017 Time for Israel now. Singing second is traditionally the kiss of death and as hard as they’re trying we can’t see this changing things……still nice to see them in the final.

2020 Patricia Kaas. Claaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaasy lady.

2024 Sweden. Still not convinced by this one live but sounded a bit better than it did on Tuesday.

2028 Croatia. Next!

2032 Portugal are on and this song is growing on us soooooooo much. It is as cute as anything. A good outside bet for a top ten place we think.

2037 It’s another beautiful performance from Iceland. This has to be reckoned with a chance at victory.

2041 Greece take to the stage. Sounded a bit shouty but who cares, it’s Sakis and few performances this year as as showy as this one. Still can’t quite work out why he’s striding atop a giant stapler however.

2044 Armenia. And it’s another thumbs up for the Jan Jan ladies.

2047 We get our first glimpse of Russia’s entry. And – yes! as in rehearsals she is wearing a bedsheet. This is doing absolutely nothing for us except to convince us that here is a country who really doesn’t want to host again next year.

2051 Azerbaijan, who are as infectious and likeable as on Thursday night. Top five for sure.

2055 And time for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Gosh, how do we love this song, let us count the ways. Ladies and gentleman, your winner. Possibly.

2059 Here in the UK we don’t have a commercial break since it is shown on the BBC so we are treated to video footage of Russian policemen singing. Meeps?

2100 Moldova next. Still utterly love this, what a joyous performance. Reckon it could be a dark horse for the top five.

2104 We were expecting brilliance from Malta and Chiara didn’t disappoint. Surely it’s about time she won this thing?

2108 Hurrah! Estonia have taken to the stage for their first final since 2003. And what a classy performance, scuppered for us only by the fact we noticed how much the violinist sitting down looks like a young Anthea Turner…..

2112 Denmark next. Are you Ronan in disguise? We are beginning to wonder, Mr Brinck. Very nice song however…..

2115 Time for us to see Germany for the first time this year. Good Lord, what is Oscar wearing? Why do we think he snuck into the Hungarian dressing room and half-inched those trousers the second they got knocked out on Thursday. Oh, now Dita Von Teese is on stage and Oscar’s shirt is falling off. ENOUGH!

2119 Germany have frankly left us speechless, so it’s down to Turkey to try and redress the balance. They are giving it some but does she sound ever so slightly out of tune or is it just us?

2122 Albania, we loved this on Thursday and we are loving it now, although getting ever so slightly excited about the imminent arrival of the pixie…..

2127 The pixie is here. And thank the Lord he is miles better than he was on Thursday night. We are beginning to think they may have this one in the bag……but then we haven’t yet seen Jade.

2131 Ukraiiiiiiiiine! Who once again are so awful that they are actually brilliant.

2135 Sorry but Romania still isn’t doing it for us. And besides, we are already thinking about what is coming next……

2139 Jade nearly got bonked in the face by a violinist. That aside she was ACE. So proud of our girlie…..

2144 Finland actually sound better than they did t’other night. But they still ain’t gonna win it.

2147 And finally…..it’s Spain. They’re in trouble for not broadcasting the second semi final that they were voting in and – OMG, what has happened to the intro? Ah, that’s better. Good lively end to the main part of the show.

2152 What does Yuri Gagarin have to do with Eurovision?

2211 Interval act. We don’t get it.

2218 The voting has begun and the UK got 10 points from Spain!!!!!!!!!!! That is 10 points more than we got in Riga…..

2226 Oh my goodness the UK is in second place. I rather think we may be going to Oslo however……

2230 Hmmmmm, Norway in the lead by 50 points.Anybody think they might win it?

2238 Duncan James from Blue is delivering our result. Pourquoi?

2239 We gave seven points to Germany?????????? Does someone want to explain that one to us?

2241 There is a break in the voting for some Russian folksters to play a song by Tatu. Well it ain’t as if it’s close and tense…..

2245 Greece have given the United Kingdom 12 points! Hurrah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2251 Do we think Norway might win it?

2252 Cyprus have given their 12 points to Greece. Quelle surprise. What a shame Greece couldn’t return the favour…..

2255 Norway have broken 300. And are now officially the biggest winners ever in Eurovision history. In other news, look how well France are doing…..:-)

2258 Moldova just got 12 points from Romania. And now Ireland are voting. Wonder where their 12 will go??????

2259 No!!!!!! They gave it to Iceland! But 10 is good, hurrah!

2302 It is overrunning, and the Slovenian juror has called for a moment of silence. ENOUGH!

2302 So……will Norway break 400?

2304 Russian lady is wearing a hairnet in the green room. Well it is 2am in Moscow……

2307 It is all over, and Norway have won. Why are we not surprised…….?

2310 Lys Assia is about 102, surely? We are on a high here. We love pixie’s winning song and the UK has had its best result in years. Soooooooooooo proud of our Jade. And with that in mind we are off for a nice cup of tea and a sit-down. Bring on 2010!

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Enjoy the show……

Posted by DINRIL on May 16, 2009

…..because we certainly will. And if you want to know who’s going to win, we confidently predict it will be – one of the 25 countries listed below……..

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It’s Ireland! No, it’s Portugal! No, it’s…..help?????

Posted by DINRIL on March 2, 2009

Is it just us or is there a growing tide of fan support for Portugal on the Eurovision stage? Frankly we’re not surprised – now that Finland have scored a victory they are the longest serving country never to actually win the contest – and their entry last year was so good that we almost thought it was going to be their year. Sadly we don’t think 2009 will be, either, although Flor de Lis’ song is certainly easy on the ear. Even if it does seem to be incorporating a few too many Irish-sounding folk twiddles for comfort. Dervish, anyone??

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We’re back……

Posted by DINRIL on December 6, 2008

…..again! Welcome to the run-up to the run-up to Eurovision season 2009, to the return of juries,  to Moscow hosting for the first time ever, and to a Bulgarian selection process that seems to be lasting even longer than James Cameron’s Titanic…..

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But before we go…..

Posted by DINRIL on May 26, 2008

…..a few final thoughts on how the voting system could be improved for 2009, to make it fairer to all:

1) Outlaw mobile phones across the whole of Eastern Europe and the Baltics, thus making it much harder for the population at large to vote for their neighbours.

2) Re-instate communism in the Eastern Bloc, thus meaning no nations take part in the contest again until at least 2024.

3) Come up with a really complicated qualification system which involves eight different qualifiers consisting of five countries each. Only the top two and a half countries from each qualifier based on the equal percentage of the votes they received, divided by their points average since 1996 and subtracted from the population of the country who drive red cars will be allowed to proceed to the final. Or something.

4) Only Ireland allowed to give any points. But then the UK probably still wouldn’t win.

5) Cost of single phone vote to be raised to £38.50, or equivalent in local currency, thus making it unaffordable to the average voter planning to vote for their neighbours.

6) No countries taking part allowed to vote and entire outcome of contest to be handed over to a sheep farmer somewhere up a mountain in Tibet.

And no, we’re not taking this seriously. But Svante, if you’re listening…..

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The Best Of The Rest – The Final!

Posted by DINRIL on May 23, 2008

And with the final looming, here are our views on the five remaining songs…

The first of the qualified finalists to grace the stage on Saturday will be our very own United Kingdom representative Andy Abraham – and the poor lad has the odds stacked against him. Andy is a very nice guy and would never actually admit it, but if we were him we would be getting a little fed up by now of all the negativity surrounding this year’s UK entry – he won’t win, he won’t get any points, why are the UK still doing this, and so on, and so on, ad infinitum. OK, we admit it, he probably won’t win, but that doesn’t mean we wouldn’t like all those naysayers to just SHUT UP for a minute, rather than continue to fuel their self-fulfilling prophecy. The fact is, Andy may well have about as much chance of winning Eurovision as the Eurovision Blog editor has of being chosen for the next England World Cup Squad (and why shouldn’t I be, exactly????? – Ed)  but at the end of the day he is still representing the UK, and surely that’s good enough reason to actually give the guy a little support? Besides his song, Even If, isn’t half bad – OK, so perhaps it isn’t particularly a ‘Eurovision’ song (actually it reminds us a bit of Belgium’s Love Power from 2007) but it’s perfectly respectable, and perhaps more importantly you can guarantee Andy will give it his all on the night. The guy is used to singing to live arenas, after all (having been on The X Factor tour) and perhaps more importantly, he can sing, and isn’t relying on some silly gimmick to get his song noticed. Chances are we’ll end up in the bottom half of the scoreboard again but we still think Andy might do a little better than everybody is predicting. At the very least he will be able to leave Belgrade knowing he hasn’t made the UK look stupid. We think.

Hot on the heels of Andy comes Germany, another country whose fortunes in the contest of late have been patchy to say the least (hitting an all time low with the execrable Run And Hide in 2005). This year they’re relying on a girl group, No Angels, with a bright and breezy pop tune called Disappear – although to be honest that’s pretty much what’s likely to happen to this song since it’s about as unmemorable as they come. So much so that with less than 24 hours to go until the final we’re still struggling to remember what it sounds like. It’s all too easy to forget that Germany, for all their largeness and prominence within Europe, have only ever won Eurovision once and have done fairly well, if not brilliantly, since – and this certainly isn’t going to be the song to chance their fortunes. In fact we’d be inclined to say they’ll be finishing bottom of the heap again.

And so to France, who have already attracted a fair bit of attention this year after their performer, the ‘credible’ musician Sebastien Tellier (he has worked with Daft Punk, doncha know) announced his intention to sing his song Divine in English. Well sacre bleu and all that. Whatever language he happens to perform in on the night, there’s no getting away from the fact that Divine is about as offbeat and quirky a Eurovision entry as it’s possible to get (well let’s face it, we weren’t going to get anything conventional from Monsieur Tellier, now were we?) but it’s actually not a bad song. Whether it’s suitable for a Eurovision stage is another matter entirely, but it’s certainly a distinct improvement on the identikit ballads France has taken to sending in recent years. A complete no-hoper but one which promises to be entertaining nonetheless.

Over the past few years the Big Four – the countries which automatically earn their place in the final due to their efforts in bankrolling Eurovision – have struggled to make much of an impact on the scoreboard, but we think this could be the year that their fortunes change – and it’s all thanks to Spain. After some genuinely disastrous years in which even former chart-toppers Las Ketchup were unable to drag them from the bottom reaches of the scoreboard, the Spaniards are back with a vengeance – in the shape of funnyman turned reggaeton singer Rodolfo Chikilicuatre. Now to be fair, there is a whiff of the novelty song about his entry Baila a Chiki Chiki, from its lyrics inviting one to ‘dance the Michael Jackson’ and going on about his granny’s underwear, to Rodolfo himself, who strums a child’s pink guitar throughout the performance. Yet unlike those efforts from the likes of Estonia and Ireland it’s actually rather sweet (more Verka Serduchka than Dustin The Turkey) and we’re forced to admit, is also insanely catchy. So much so that we confidently predict wobbly-bellied sweaty tourists will be dancing to it on the beaches of Benidorm by July. Ridiculous? Yes, absolutely? Likely to leap up the scoreboard? Er, yes, we think it just might. Could this be the one to finally drag the Big Four out of the doldrums and back among the big guns? Let’s hope so.

And last but not least, we come to the host nation Serbia. Now having won Eurovision on their very first try as an independent nation (i.e separate from Montenegro) they have a lot to live up to this time around – but frankly we’re not sure that the contest will be coming back to Belgrade for a second go. While Oro by Jelena Tomasevic is certainly pleasant enough in that kind of haunting, Eastern European ethno-ballad kind of way, it lacks the wow factor of Molitva, and there are certainly far better ballads in the contest than this (take a bow Portugal and Albania, for example). Being the host nation and being right among the Eastern block it’ll probably pick up a fair sprinkling of points but to be honest they should make the most of their hosting gig – because it doesn’t look like they’ll be getting it again in 2009…..

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And Here’s The Running Order…

Posted by DINRIL on May 22, 2008

Hot on the heels of the qualifiers, here’s how the final will shape up on Saturday night:

Romania
UK
Albania
Germany
Armenia
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Israel
Finland
Croatia
Poland
Iceland
Turkey
Portugal
Latvia
Sweden
Denmark
Georgia
Ukraine
France
Azerbaijan
Greece
Spain
Serbia
Russia
Norway

Are we the only people who are really REALLY excited about this?

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Semi-Final The Second – The Results!

Posted by DINRIL on May 22, 2008

And joining the first semi-final qualifiers in Saturday’s final are:

UKRAINE

CROATIA

ALBANIA

ICELAND

GEORGIA

DENMARK

SWEDEN

LATVIA

TURKEY

PORTUGAL

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