Eurovision 2012 – Semi Final 1
It is that time of the year again. Eurovision time, love it or hate it you can’t avoid it. Especially not if you live in Ireland where we are very proud of our record of winning the contest seven times. Forget Euro 2012, Eurovision 2012 is where the real action is.
People often ask me why I love it so much and I find it hard to articulate why. I do love the cheesefest it is. It is unapologectically kitsch, feelgood and, as an Irish person, we have a long history in the contest since Butch Moore first sang about Walking The Streets In The Rain in 1965.
Every year I go through each of the entries, weighing up their song, the performance, god help me sometimes the lyrics, and it has to be taken into account, their geographical location. There’s always the talk that we’ll never win because of the block voting with the influx of eastern European countries into the competition. We seem to forget there has always been block voting, look at Sweden/Norway and Denmark. Check out the stats for who’s give the most points to who within that location and I doubt you’ll be surprised!
This year there are some really good entries, some bad entries and some entries where even I am sitting there wondering what they hope to achieve. Also to all you people who are negative about Jedward and their entry, I will confess something. I am not a Jedward fan. I am a Eurovision fan. Whatever you may think about those two boys they have been wonderful ambassadors both last year in Germany and this year Azerbaijan. We need their energy, their eternal optimism and you know what their song isn’t half bad either
Without further ado, let me talk you through the entries that in the first semi-final which is ours and is airing tonight. I will give you a brief synopsis of the song and an Interesting Fact About The Entry, hereto referred to as IFATE to save me typing so you can dazzle people at whatever Euro party you end up at tonight. We start with one of the weaker entries in this semi final.
Montenegro: “Euro Neuro” – Rambo Amadeus
There are always songs that you hear once and after a while of listening to them, they grow on you. Not Rambo god bless him. Not even like a fungus, its like nails on a blackboard. Remember when Andrea asked us to just get out of her, out of her, out of her bed? Or maybe it was head, I was distracted by her dancing. Anyhew, that’s what Montenegro is capable of.
IFATE: The self-called “World Mega Tzar” is famous for his crazy jazz-funk music.
Iceland: “Never Forget” – Gréta Salóme & Jónsi
Next is one of those songs that I love even though I know not what they say, I like the delivery and the overall performance. Note to self, pick up some Icelandic so I can sing along. Strong song, I expect them to qaulify.
IFATE: Jonsi has already represented Iceland in 2004 so he’s no stranger to the contest. Greta is a violinist in the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra.
Greece: “Aphrodisiac” – Eleftheria Eleftheriou
Next up is one of my favourites, its a classic euro pop song from Eleftheria. Simple lyrics which I can sing along with, good dance beat and she’s a bit of a cutie. Sure who wouldn’t want to boogie to this eh?
IFATE: Born in Cyprus, she’s an former X Factor Lady. Seriously, that’s all I could find on her!
Latvia: “Beautiful song” – Anmary
This one is a strange one. I didn’t like it at the start, though they did get extra points for mentioning Ireland and Johnny Logan. It’s off-putting that she sings like Yoda in some parts. Jagger Mick did call me? Not sure what that’s all about, but I like it. Also not sure about the costume thingy, maybe they won’t stick with that.
IFATE: Her greatest fan is her two-year-old son Marts Gabriels. Or should I say Gabriels Marts
Albania: “Suus” – Rona Nishliu
I skip this song every time I go through all the entries. I did listen to it once the whole way through and that was 3 minutes and 14 seconds of my life I can’t get back. Honestly, next!
IFATE: She is also a devoted experimental jazz musician.
Romania: “Zaleilah” - Mandinga
I LOVE this song, the drums, the congas, the other various instruments they squeeze in? Fabulous! Douze points for Romania! Sing it with me, Zaleilah, everyday, everybody, When you love you say everyday, everybody.
IFATE: The band started 10 years ago. Since then they have become known as the best Latino band in the country.
Switzerland: “Unbreakable” – Sinplus
A bit too serious for Eurovison I think. The bookies have them odds-on to qualify. Then again the bookies have the UK as third favourite. The betting will all change once the semis start I feel.
IFATE: They’re brothers.
Belgium: “Would You” – Iris
She’s only 17, god bless her cottons. Good song, here’s hoping the big stage doesn’t overwhelm her. Needs a bit more oomph though. I must check out her rehearsals and see what she has planned.
IFATE: Belgium has received the most points from the UK and given the most points to the Netherlands. I know, mad right?
Finland: “När jag blundar” – Pernilla Karlsson
I don’t have any feelings about this song.
IFATE: It was written for Pernilla by her brother for her mother who is a huge fan of the Eurovison apparently. I need to get me some kids who can write and sing and enter them into the Eurosong. I’m really missing out.
Israel: “Time” – Izabo
God, Bring back Diva International. Israel, WHAT?! You’re the man in my playground? What?
IFATE: Izabo are best described as a brilliant, action packed combination of Psychadelic Rock, Disco, Punk flavoured with Arabic spices.
San Marino: “Facebook uh oh oh” – Valentina Monetta
Then we come to San Marino, before this entry I knew very little about San Marino it has to be said, I knew it was located down there somewhere near Italy. The ‘song’ was originally title the Facebook Song, but they found out they were not allowed enter it with that title so they had to some up with some new and inventive. They dropped the word Facebook. Inventive eh? And the lyrics, oh god the lyrics. Do you want to play cybersex again? Play? Again?! Lordy, my ears. I can’t wait to see her live performance. Is she going to roll around on stage with her laptop? Just click me with your mouse. Appalling.com
You’re logging in
Then it begins
And your computer is swinging
And taking your time away
IFATE: San Marino is the oldest surviving sovereign state and constitutional republic in the world.
Cyprus: ”La la love” – Ivi Adamou
LOVE it. Its just fantastic! Catchy easy to remember lyrics, you can see I don’t ask for much. It would be a travestry if she didn’t get through. I would cry.
IFATE: She’s 18. Either I am getting older or the Eurovision entrants are getting younger!
Denmark: “Should’ve known better” – Soluna Samay
A mate of mine is so sure this is going to win, she’s putting a bet on it. It’s a good song and Denmark always do quite well, but I reckon getting into the final is about as far as its going to go.
Not sure what the uniform is all about.
IFATE: She often performs as a busker, both in Copenhagen and in other big cities around Europe.
Russia: “Party for everybody” – Buranovskiye Babushki
The grannies. The Russian grannies. They have surprised everyone by climbing to second favourite with the bookies. I hope they are not seated in the same area as our boys, can you imagine their faces as Jedward carthwheel past them?
IFATE: They have said if they win they will use the money to build a church for their village.
Hungary: “Sound of our hearts” – Compact Disco
Another track that’s too serious for the Eurovision I think. It’s disappointing as I loved Katie Wolf representing them last year with, What about my dreams.
IFATE: They are a very serious band. That’s all I got?! The gospel according to Google gave me zilch!
Austria: “Woki mit deim Popo” – Trackshittaz
These chaps. Well apparently they dropped with the bookies even though they had a tractor in their video. I kid you not, those Europeans must rate tractor usage quite highly in their videos. Is it my imagination or does one of their lyrics sound like noodlesoupen gay? I’m not quite sure what a gay noodlesoupen is, maybe I’ll do some research.
IFATE: Their style of music is said to be tractor gangster party rap. That would explain the tractor in the video. Somewhat.
Moldova: “Lautar” – Pasha Parfeny
This is another catchy number with a different style of music. A vast improvement on the cone heads they sent last year, those yokes still give me nightmares.
IFATE: Pasha Parfeny’s real name is Pavel Parfeny.
Ireland: “Waterline” – Jedward
The boys! I have a really good feeling about them this year, here’s hoping to do well! The song isn’t as catchy as Lipstick but its Ireland so who cares! Come on Jedward!!
IFATE” Jedward make Irish Eurovision Song Contest history as for the first time Ireland sends the same act two years in a row.
- You can catch SF1 on RTE2 from 8.00 with Marty Whelan and on BBC3.