Ah Eurovision. You either love it or you hate it. Personally, I love to hate it but I always find myself watching it every year – I think it’s because of Graham Norton and his sassy commentary!
This year it was hosted in Kyiv in Ukraine and representing us we have Lucie Jones with a song called “Never Give Up on You” – although I don’t know why we are bothering because we won’t win, especially after Brexit! But hey ho, you never know. We last won Eurovision 20 years ago so fingers crossed!
There are a total of 26 countries competing this year as we see them all parading the stage with their flag on the screen behind them – a new addition to the show this year. Also Russia has had to withdraw from the competition due to their performer ‘illegally’ visiting Crimea in 2015 and because of Ukrainian law; she has been banned from the country for 3 years – so much drama already!
1 – Israel – “I Feel Alive”
Wow. First off the bat we have Israel and oh boy that was bad. The beat and mix of the song was good with a great rhythm, but the singer ruined it. The big night nerves must have got to him because the vocals were shaky and pitchy throughout. He was very charismatic though – i.e. loved being the centre of attention. And to top it off he thanked the wrong country at the end! “Thank You Australia!”
2 – Poland – “Flashlight”
First ballad of the night and not bad! The singer’s voice is very powerful and almost aggressive. But the song itself wasn’t the best composition. It felt like it went in the wrong direction all the time – she went low when it should have gone high. Nonetheless, it was very enjoyable.
3 – Belarus – “Story of My Life”
First duo of the night and first song sung in the native language. Channelling Ed Sheeran with a guitar based folk song which worked really well. The singers’ voices went very well together and you could tell they had chemistry between them in their performance – especially with that kiss at the end. I just don’t understand why they were singing on a hovercraft.
4 – Austria - “Running on Air”
A very good voice. Straight away I’m digging this song. Again, it seems like he is channelling the Sheeran. Soft and rhythmic mix to the song with a very powerful singer. His voice surprised me and the song is a very nice song lyrically too. My favourite so far.
5 – Armenia – “Fly With Me”
The vision mixer knew this song with fades and cutting on the beat throughout the performance. This song is a slow builder, starting off soft and quiet and ending heavy and loud. Not a fan of the voice of the singer though. I didn’t think the song suited her voice at all.
6 – The Netherlands - “Light and Shadows”
Oh look, it’s Steps without the male members and not cheesy! Actually scrap that, its Wilson Phillips! I really like this one! Each member of the band has a really strong and powerful voice and they harmonise together really well. I loved the instrumentation of this one too. Might have to add this one to my Spotify!
7 – Moldova – “Hey Mama”
I loved this one! Funky, fun and upbeat with saxophone, fiddle and synths! The band has great stage presence too. I couldn’t stop bopping along. Although, I don’t understand why there were 3 brides on the stage with them...
8 – Hungary – “Origo”
Second native language song of the night and I strangely enjoyed the mix of singing and raping and not understanding a word of it. I even enjoyed the milk churner instrumentation going on. I didn’t enjoy the OTT dancer though.
9 – Italy – “Occidentali’s Karma”
Italian Walt Disney with a gorilla. Yep, that’s the perfect description. Nope, I don’t like this one. The singer is kind of creepy, especially when dancing and rolling around on the floor with a gorilla. The mix of the song underneath is enjoyable though. Shame the vocals and performance was just plain weird.
10 – Denmark – “Where I Am”
Another powerful vocal. This woman really goes for it and gives the performance her everything. The last act of the song was really great but overall it was pleasant. To me it was something I would see on The X Factor.
11 – Portugal – “Amar Pelos Dois”
It’s like I have been transported into a classic Disney movie. This one is very slow and simple and reminds me of Sleeping Beauty with its swelling violins. It is actually quite beautiful to listen to, even though I can’t understand a word.
12 – Azerbaijan – “Skeletons”
This one is quite eccentric. Nice vocals and good beat to the song with synths mixed with piano. I was really enjoying it until the first chorus. I was expecting the song to kick into overdrive – and the song did, but the vocals fell flat. Also a man horse on a ladder, why?
13 – Croatia – “My Friend”
One man, two voices. Half the song is in English with a higher, ballad-y type voice, the other half in the native language in a deep, operatic voice. All this mixed with a great rhythm, a cello and violin. This guy has such a powerful voice and when he gets going, he’s off. This was a grower for me. Wasn’t too sure when it started off but by the end I liked it.
14 – Australia – “Don’t Come Easy”
This was another pleasant one. But that’s really it. It was very easy on the ears with a lovely smooth voice, but it was actually very boring to watch, I was expecting a big drop in the song and for the graphics and lighting to actually do something interesting, but it never did. It was okay.
15 – Greece – “”This is Love”
This one is quite cheesy. Cheesy lyrics. Cheesy disco beat. Cheesy half naked men dancing around in a paddling pool. I suppose this is a quintessentially Eurovision one. But you wouldn’t think it but the songs slow start and the long flowy dress the singer is wearing. Although, the vocals fell a bit flat on this one. Not a fan.
16 – Spain – “Do it For Your Lover”
Another native language one and all I could think as I watched this one is that these guys are the Spanish Vamps. No amount of cute hairstyles and guitar jamming on stage can make up for how boringly repetitive this song is. As well as it being boring, a lot of dodgy notes throughout.
17 – Norway – “Grab the Moment”
Despite the negative Norton commentary before hand, I really liked this one. It was very catchy with great beats and synths throughout and live vocal distortions. Another I might have look up after the show. The singer is obviously influenced by Justin Timberlake’s dress sense. Also, great job by the vision mixer again with cuts on the beat and on screen graphics – my media brain was happy. I liked this song and performance very much.
18 – United Kingdom – “Never Give Up on You”
A good job on our part! Lucie performed a blinder and showed off her powerful voice with powerful lyrics to a slow yet upbeat song. One of the best performances of the night and that’s not me being biased. The performance also had some beautiful staging with fire and lighting.
19 – Cyprus – “Gravity”
Well this is basically “Human” by RagnBone Man with different lyrics. Literally, all I could think about is the song underneath the vocals. Everything about the instrumentation is the same is “Human”. The vocals were okay but I can’t help but compare to RagnBone Man because it is practically the same song.
20 – Romania - “Yodel It!”
Nope. Yodelling meets N-Dubz. This was just wrong. The vocal performances was good until the yodelling started. Now all I can think about is yodelling N-Dubz. Make it stop.
21 – Germany – “Perfect Life”
Another rip off. “Titanium” by David Guetta and Sia but with different lyrics. Again, that’s all I could think about is how similar this song is. If you’re going to take a Sia song and rewrite the lyrics, at least sing it well. But the vocals were weak and by the end, you could hear how tired the singers voice was. I’m sorry but just no.
22 – Ukraine – “Time”
First rock number of the night! This made me happy. Until the band started singing. Loved the song and instrumentation but the vocals are just a no-no. They were too weak for the song and when the song gets going in the chorus, the vocals just didn’t hold up. Disappointing.
23 – Belgium – “City Lights”
I started off really liking this song. I thought this one was going to be a great pop number with a great beat and vocal. But the singer didn’t change the note she was singing until the very end. It was really boring to listen to and watch because of this. However, you could tell that the singer was petrified so this probably had an impacted on her performance. Shame.
24 – Sweden – “I Can’t Go On”
Now this is what I call a great pop song! This song has a great flow to it and insanely catchy beats and lyrics as well as an undertone of vocal distortions which I have been digging lately. I also loved the staging of this one with a small team of dancers in suits working a treadmill. Loved it.
25 – Bulgaria – “Beautiful Mess”
Another Eurovision banger! I can’t believe I just wrote that but this one was really great. Slow and meaningful with a great thumping beat throughout. The vocals on this song were really powerful and emotional too. As well as this, awesome editing and graphics on screen throughout this performance. Another I need to look up later.
26 – France – “Requiem”
And finally we have France and one more native song. This one has a good catchy beat and an almost Indian influence to it. However, I’m not digging this one. There’s something about the singers voice that I just don’t like.
So there we have it. All 26 songs have been sung and performed and now it is time for the results.
My Top 6
Here are my 6 favourites. It was going to be a top 5 but I couldn’t take one off!
1 – Norway
2 - Sweden
3 – Moldova
4 – Bulgaria
5 – Portugal
6 – The Netherlands
The results are in and we didn’t do too bad this year, scoring 111 points with only 1 set of 12 points coming from the Australian jury. This is the best year we have had in the Eurovision since 2011 when Blue was our entry. Good job Lucie!
And the winner is... PORTUGAL! Yes the classic Disney/La La Land song beat all the upbeat songs and wacky performances. I am pleased with this result as I adored this song, even though I didn’t understand a word of it. The top 5 scorers are as follows -
Did you watch Eurovision? Tell us what you thought of our entry, the winner and what your favourite was on the night on Twitter @npcityradio and @shannonnicdyer or on Facebook!