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Eurovision Top 10 -2016

Published March 31, 2016 by Naomi Rettig

After listening to all entries again and again, I have narrowed down my top ten Eurovision songs for this year’s contest. (To save anyone feeling compelled to read through my reviews on all 43).

  1. Finland – I just love this song so much! I think I’m in the minority though as it’s 100/1 with William Hill (other betting sites are available) right now. I love the energy, the sentiment, the tune you can dance to, Sandhja the artist – I love her, her hair and the fringing on her leisurewear in the video. I’ve even ordered an electric blue swimsuit with heavy fringing on it to wear on Eurovision night in tribute. Yes, after repeat playing repeatedly, this is my favourite song this year.
  2. Russia – This is tipped by the bookies at 6/4 favourite and I can see why. Catchy tune, dance factor high, Sergey is gorgeous, eye-catching video. I just wonder if it’s too much like Mans Zelmerlow’s winning song last year. Gorgeous bloke, upbeat dance track, clever digital stage animation. I’m not complaining with that, but maybe something different for this year? (Like a girl, with shaved hair, and fringed clothing).
  3. Armenia – This is now on my mp3 player too. This is very Eurovision to me, beautiful lady, eastern European sounding stringed instruments, dramatic, and when the beat drops at 49 seconds in – I get a tingly spine. Tingly spines are good. 25/1 with the bookies. I’m predicting a wind machine on stage.
  4. France – Now I don’t normally like the French entry, I just don’t seem to be on a musical level with France, but I really like this one. It has a catchy chorus in English I can sing along to, verses in French I can pretend to sing along to, and some ooh’s. Good oohing in a song works for me. No fringing, but I’m happy with the ooh’s. 12/1 with the bookies.
  5. Belgium – An upbeat cheery song, good to dance to and sing along with. Cute singer Laura, but not overly cute. I think she will bring great energy to the stage in Sweden. No fringing but a sparkly silver jacket I am a little envious of. 100/1 odds at the bookies so not many people sharing my choice here.
  6. Iceland – Extreme fringing alert, combined with a wind machine. Excellent. Has a lovely Celtic feel to it, Greta has a lovely voice, slow bits and dancy bits, something for everyone. I think this will be staged very well. Wind machine or smoke machine? That will be my question on the night. If it’s both I don’t think my excitement levels will cope. 50/1 odds, the same as us in the UK so not much chance of winning.
  7. San Marino – When I first heard this song I think I scored it one of my least favorites’ but this is a grower for me. Serhat has a voice like gravel coated in treacle, rolled in oats and shoved deep in a volcano. At first listen I found this menacing and creepy and it came across, not as a love song, but as someone I would get a restraining order for. It has now grown on me, helped by the disco backing. In fact, it’s the disco backing that saved it for me. 100/1 odds but I don’t think this will make it past the semi-final stage unfortunately.
  8. Netherlands – Now I didn’t think I’d like this one, it has a country music twang to it, which is not normally my cup of tea. However, this is catchy and the chap singing and playing guitar is easy on the eye. Although I do get distracted by his name, Douwe Bob. I just think of the coffee Douwe Egberts. Other coffees are available, although Nescafe Jim didn’t make this year’s contest. 66/1 at the bookies, not looking good considering the UK is 50/1 and we all know there’s zero chance of us winning.
  9. Denmark – Three lovely men with three good voices. No fringing, wind machine or smoke machine but a good chorus with a bit that makes you want to punch the air. You’ll know when. 100/1 odds at present, I don’t think Denmark will be hosting next year.
  10. Cyprus – Something a bit different, gravelly rock with euro-pop vibes. Could Eurovision viewers want something alternative this year? I certainly enjoyed it and with odds of 25/1 it seems to stand a fair chance.

 

So there’s my top 10 of Eurovision 2016. I want Finland to win so much I am tempting fate by saying that if they make it through the semi-final I will record my dance routine to ‘Sing it Away’ while wearing my fringed swimsuit. If they then go on and win I shall post it online! But before a petition starts up to stop this happening (I’m well aware it won’t be a pretty sight) let me remind you it’s 100/1 odds. The UK is 50/1. We’ve got more chance of winning twice in one night than I have appearing on Youtube in an electric blue fringed swimsuit.

 

Now, what shoes would match my swimwear….just in case 😉

Eurovision Song Contest 2016 Preview

Published March 24, 2016 by Naomi Rettig

I’ve listened to and watched (via the official Eurovision videos) all forty-three entries for Eurovision this year. I know, sad, mad or dedicated, take your pick. Here’s my summary and my scores. The scores are out of thirty. I’ve scored them on their videos but during the contest that will change to scoring on their stage performance. So my winner is not set in stone yet! It’s also worth pointing out that my winner last year was Austria, who actually came last. I’ve also listed them in the order that they will perform in the two semi-finals, with the automatic finalists listed last. Wave your flags and get your dance pants on, here we go:

Semi-final 1:

Armenia – (LoveWave by Iveta Mukuchyan) 49 seconds in and I feel like I’m on a jet plane with g-force tugging at my sequins. Lots of oohs to sing along with. Wind machine usage in the video that I’m sure will be transferred to the stage. Beautiful singer. Arty video. Lovely man with long hair too in the video, he doesn’t sing but looks pretty and moody at the same time, I hope he’s on stage. Scores: Song 8, Artist 9, Video 8. Total: 25

Croatia – (Lighthouse by Nina Kraljic) The time lapse video of the coast by the lighthouse looks like the idents they play between songs on the night itself. Typical ballad, nothing new or exciting. Don’t know what Nina looks like as she wasn’t in the video, a surprise for the night. Scores: Song 5, Artist 5, Video 2. Total: 12

Finland – (Sing it Away by Sandhja) Leisure wear with fringes, a smoke machine in kids’ park, horses on a beach and in the woods. Interesting video. A small selection of sad kids in said video not so depressed after ‘singing it away’. Upbeat song. Scores: Song 9, Artist 9, Video 8. Total: 26

Greece – (Utopian land by Argo) Haunting stringed instruments, a Greek rapper that wouldn’t be out of place in Goldie Lookin’ Chain, as I swear I heard a Newport accent. Sung in Greek. Black and white video of a topless man running which got tedious after a while, this is Eurovision, not Baywatch. Scores: Song 6, Artist 4, Video 5. Total: 15

Hungary – (Pioneer by Freddie) Air traffic control glow sticks and a drumming monk, a gravelly voice on a handsome man. Nice song, too average though. Scores: Song 6, Artist 8, Video 6. Total: 20

Moldova – (Falling Stars by Lidia Isac) Wind machine usage high. Pretty Lidia reminds me of Paris Hilton. Typical sounding Eurovision uplifting song. Nice drum at the end. Scores: Song 7, Artist 7, Video 4. Total: 18

Netherlands – (Slow down by Douwe Bob) Good looking chap playing guitar with a country music twang. Video is of him and friends hanging about in a bar. I’d have a drink with him. Scores: Song 8, Artist 9, Video 7. Total: 24

Russia – (You are the only one by Sergey Lazarev) Love this one but is it too much like last years’ winner? Fantastic video, digital trickery, very creative. Interesting to see if they stage it like last years on the night. Hot bloke. Dancy tune. Scores: Song 9, Artist 9, Video 10. Total: 28

San Marino – (I didn’t know by Serhat) This has a seventies vibe for me. Serhat has such a deep voice he makes Barry White sound falsetto. I actually found his voice quite menacing though rather than seducing. Scores: Song 5, Artist 5, Video 4. Total: 14

Austria – (Loin D’ici by Zoe) A pretty redhead singing a pretty song, and a pretty video of her walking through the seasons. With a wind machine. Scores: Song 6, Artist 7, Video 6. Total: 19

Azerbaijan – (Miracle by Samra) An upbeat dancy song. Catchy. Scores: Song 7, Artist 8, Video 6. Total: 21

Bosnia & Herzegovina – (Ljubav Je by Dalal and Deen feat Ana Rucner and Jala) Very rustic and charming, good electric cello usage. Ambushed in middle though by a performance by a rapper which didn’t fit for me. I would have called security. Scores: Song 4, Artist 4, Video 4. Total: 12

Cyprus – (Alter Ego by Minus One) Ooh rock and euro vibes combo. A gravelly voiced rock band but good to dance to. Fun desert video. Scores: Song 8, Artist 9, Video 8. Total: 25

Czech Republic – (I Stand by Gabriela Guncikova) Beautiful lady with an amazing voice. Good solid ballad. Fun video, I loved the flowers at the end. Scores: Song 6, Artist 8, Video 7. Total: 21

Estonia – (Play by Juri Pootsmann) Very smart young man. Catchy tune. Another deep voice but not a scary one. Scores: Song 7, Artist 8, Video 5. Totals: 20

Iceland – (Hear Them Calling by Greta Salome) Extreme fringing and a wind machine! Celtic feel. Slow bits and dancy bits. Great energy. Scores: song 8, Artist 8, video 6. Totals: 22

Malta – (Walk on Water by Ira Losco) Good dance track. Middle of the road for me. Scores: Song 6, Artist 7, Video 6. Total: 19

Montenegro – (The Real Thing by Highway) Grungy, more hardcore. Lady dancing in a leotard was distracting as it was mismatched with the song. Different but not my cup of tea, too much of a downer for Eurovision. Scores: Song 4, Artist 5, Video 5. Total: 14

Semi-final 2:

Australia – (Sound of Silence by Dami Im) Ballad, beautiful lady, smoke machine, topless man dancing. Average. Scores: Song 6, Artist 8, Video 6. Total: 20

Belarus – (Help You Fly by Ivan) Didn’t grab me. Nice enough song but it doesn’t stick in my mind. Scores: Song 6, Artist 6, Video 5. Total: 17

Ireland – (Sunlight by Nicky Byrne) They kindly put the lyrics on the video so that you can sing along. Nice tune and Nicky, formally of Westlife, has a great voice but not shouting winner at me. Scores: Song 7, Artist 8, Video 7. Total: 22

Israel – (Made of Stars by Hovi Star) Nice but nothing special. Scores: Song 6, Artist 6, Video 6. Total 18

Latvia – (Heartbeat by Justs) Felt that this was missing something. Had potential but didn’t deliver for me. It could be a grower. Scores: Song 6, Artist 6, Video 6. Total: 18

Lithuania – (I’ve Been Waiting for this Night by Donny Montell) Uplifting song, fun video, fit bloke. Scores: Song 7, Artist 8, Video 7. Total: 22

Macedonia – (Dona by Kaliopi) I didn’t enjoy this one, too screechy for me. Scores: Song 4, Artist 5, Video 5. Total: 14

Poland – (Colour of Your Life by Michal Szpak) Ballad. Michal is a man with long hair and a wind machine. He gave lots of Zoolander looks. Found this song a bit cheesy. Scores: Song 5, Artist 5, Video 5. Total: 15

Serbia – (Goodbye by ZAA Sanja Vucic) The singer looks like she’s possessed, or had too much caffeine, lots of jerky movements. Quite dramatic. Nice orchestra. Scores: Song 6, Artist 6, Video 5. Total: 17

Switzerland – (The Last of Our Kind by Rykka) Dull ballad. Scores: Song 5, Artist 5, Video 5. Total: 15

Albania – (Fairytale by Eneda Tarifa) Average. Didn’t grab me. Although I liked her hood at the end of the video, she looked like a Venus flytrap closing. Scores: Song 4, Artist 5, Video 6. Total: 15

Belgium – (What’s The Pressure by Laura Tesoro) I thought it was ‘Another One Bites the Dust’ when it started. The video looks like an ad for GAP clothing range. It reminds me of another song too that I can’t put my finger on. Lively, upbeat, funky with high energy. Scores: Song 8, Artist 8, Video 7. Total: 23

Bulgaria – (If Love Was a Crime by Poli Genova) I liked the bits that sound like helium was used and some bits reminded me of the Clangers. Catchy. Dancy. Scores: Song 8, Artist 8, Video 7. Total 23

Denmark – (Soldiers of Love by Lighthouse X) They can be my soldiers of love, handsome men with good voices. Catchy tune. Uplifting. Has a bit where you want to jump up and punch the air. Scores: Song 8, Artist 9, Video 7. Total: 24

Georgia – (Midnight Gold by Nika Kocharov and Young Georgian Lolitaz) Nighties Manchester just arrived in Georgia with a synth-pop back up. Scores: Song 6, Artist 7, Video 8. Total: 21

Norway – (Icebreaker by Agnete) Sparkly blonde with a smoke machine and laser beams, but it didn’t do anything for me. Scores: Song 5, Artist 5, Video 5. Total 15

Romania – (Moment of Silence by Ovidiu Anton) Melodramatic West End Musical meets rock opera. Not for me. Scores: Song 4, Artist 4, Video 4. Total: 12

Slovenia – (Blue and Red by ManuElla) Vibes of country music and The Corrs. Spoiler: I knew she had another outfit on underneath her first outfit as she was an odd shape. It was no Bucks fizz moment. Scores: Song 6, Artist 6, Video 5. Total: 17

Ukraine – (1944 by Jamala) Crikey! The song starts with the line ‘when strangers come to you house and kill you all’. Cheery little number it is not. Wailing and miserable. Jamala sings ‘our souls’ but it sounds like arseholes to me. Scores: Song 2, Artist 2, Video 3. Total: 7

Finalists:

Sweden – (If I Were Sorry by Frans) Starts with talking which I dislike. Sweet but underwhelming. Scores: Song 5, Artist 5, Video 5. Total 15

France – (J’ai Cherche by Amir) Catchy. Bi-lingual. The singer reminds me of James Purefoy. Uplifting. Scores: Song 7, Artist 8, Video 8. Total: 23

Germany – (Ghost by Jamie-Lee) I was far too distracted by the weird outfit Jamie-Lee was wearing, this was just as well as I found the song quite dull. Scores: Song 4, Artist 4, Video 5. Total: 13

Italy – (No Degree of Separation by Fancesca Michielin) Not my cup of tea. Average song. Scores: Song 5, Artist 5, Video 0. Total: 10

Spain – (Say Yay by Barei) Good dance tune, cracking voice. Score: Song 7, Artist 8, Video 7.  Total: 22

UK – (You’re Not Alone by Joe and Jake) I like this one, I picked it in the UK vote when it was chosen for the contest. Catchy tune, nice lads, but we won’t score high. Scores: Song 7, Artist 8, Video 7.  Total: 22

So there you go, my opinions on the Eurovision entries for 2016. My results are: 1st Russia, 2nd Finland, 3rd Armenia & Cyprus, and 5th Netherlands & Denmark. Roll on May 10th, 12th and 14th! Get your Eurovision party started!