Posts Tagged ‘Eurovision’

Eurovision 2019- SemiFinals Part 2, Part 1: The ALMOST THERE!!!

May 14, 2019

Ok… so we’re almost at Eurovision! We can’t watch it on TV in the US… so I’ll be following up with the winners on YouTube.

In the meantime… I have to haul ass and watch a ton of videos. SO HERE WE GO!!!

Starting with a land of wine and really good internet.. ALBANIA:

Points for the dark, Madonna in the Aughts vibe, but I’m not grabbed by it. It’s nice that it doesn’t scream ‘Europop Made To Win Eurovision’ but it doesn’t scream much else.

Next up, from a land of mountains and a brave transsexual parliamentarian.. ARMENIA:

Ok.. totally doing the ‘Imagine Dragons’ thing.. and it is mostly non-political. Armenia has done the occasional very pointed songs about the Armenian Genocide… and with Turkey out of the contest since 2014, and other political considerations about the site country.. it’s smart they’ve gone pop.

Now, from one of my three ancestral countries, and home of CONCHITA WURST… AUSTRIA:

Ok… it’s not really grabbing me, but it’s got a chance. What can I say.. nice, but not much there. But get this woman singing for soundtracks. STAT!

Next up, from a land of serious tea and alleged caviar diplomacy… AZERBAIJAN:

Ok.. I dig the Sexy Mortal Kombat Meets Funky Maroon 5/ Enrique Iglesias vibe. I legit dig it, and it could get a regional bump.

Next up… from the land of ‘Game Of Thrones’ locations and independent since 1995.. CROATIA:

It’s easy to forget that history never really stopped in Europe.. and singing songs wishing for love makes more sense given some of the really recent history. But sorry, the song just   doesn’t grab me.

And now, another Eurovision powerhouse and one of my fave countries in the world… DENMARK:

This is a real cute song, Leonara is both a skater and singer.. but she kind a scares me. Like, she’s gonna pop a regulator in her sub processors and start looking for Sarah Conner. But, she’s singing to a whole bunch of countries, so… she has a shot.

Followed by the bards of Europe and SEVEN TIME WINNAHHS… IRELAND:

Ok… I’m a dual citizen, so I’m biased as hell, but this is a fun song. Sarah, the make up makes me thing you’re from Long Island in the ’80’s. Come on girl.. you can do better. This is “Adele” light, but it’s fun. And Ireland… people like us. But, we’ve so many damn Eurovisions we lost count.. no, we haven’t.. SEVEN!!!… so unless we take the world by storm, a win is unlikely.

But I’m backing her. ALWAYS BET ON A GREEN! Well, bet on blue if it’s Leinster Rugby but I digress….

Now, from the land of the tallest women in the world and that IS NOT LATVERIA.. LATVIA:

Not great, but real singing, nice bounce, lo fi… yeah. GET YA SOME, LATVIA!!!

And now, a country with it’s own official scent and tons of Amber… LITHUANIA:

Ok… totes feeling ‘One Republic,’ and it’s not bad. Not grabbing me, another one that could go far, and I won’t be mad it it does. But suggestion… run from lions. Works better that way. I know people who ran with lions.. never mind.

Ok.. nine more to go, and of these nine… no real Eurovision Misery. Even the ones that didn’t grab me were fun…and even if they are less of the insane Eurovision videos of yore, people are putting in effort.

My picks are Azerbaijan, Czech Republic, Ireland and Latvia.. let’s see what we think of the Second Half of the Second Semi-Finals of Eurovision 2019!!!

Eurovision 2019: The Guaranteed Finalists

May 13, 2019

Of the 41… damn… contestants, 6 are automatically in the finals. Because they pay for the lions share of Eurovision costs, the UK, Spain, Italy, Germany and France are automatically in the Finals. The last nation is host nation and last year’s winner… this year Israel.

Now, there are people who argue this is unfair, and this is considered one reason why the Big 5 haven’t won in forever. No one wants to really vote for them. The last Big 5 win was Germany and 2010… and the last time UK won was in 1997 with Katrina And The Waves. Wait… what?

Jaysus Crispus, that’s bad. I mean… ouch. You get why people bash the contest… the winners can be awful. Sorry, Waves.. you are not leaving me walking on sunshine with this.

So, what about this year?


Bilal Hassani… ok, first up, we got androgyny and bilingualism. Lyrics about standing out and being yourself… think Conchita Wurst light. Look.. this is not a great song, but Hassani actually attacks this with charm and energy.  This is a solid like… I’m not rooting for it, but if it does well, I’m happy.

Next up… and yes, it could be  awkward… GERMANY:

S!sters.. not quite feeling that exclamation point. But… this is nice. Plus the whole lyrics apologizing for trying to crush each other and recognizing someone is family… hell, if you are Germany going to Israel for Eurovision, maybe a song with a strong current of reconciliation is not the worst idea.

This could be a good karaoke hit… two drunk gals working it out after arguing and rosé. Not winning me over, but nice.

Followed by the host country, and place you will have opinions about… ISRAEL:

Ok.. Kobi Marimi has a really hard act to follow. And… he’s nice. Soulful crooning of home, mixing gospel with Jewish/Middle Eastern notes. I don’t see Israel being a two time in row winner ( they actually pulled that off in 1978 and 1979,) but this is ok.

And now, from the land of opera and swinging resorts destroyed by volcanoes… ITALY:

Ok.. I actually like this song. A lot.. dude references Jackie Chan and Ramadan, there’s a rhythm you can bounce to… this is the first of the Big 5 I’m like, down with. Yeah… this is up there for me.

And now, from the country path split the undiscovered America’s with Porgtugal by papal decree… SPAIN:

¡Muchas gracias, Miki! This is another great song, feels very Spanish, great rhythm, and could wake you up amid the mid tempo ballads.

And now, from a country that hates and loves Eurovision with same mixed feelings it has for the EU… UNITED KINGDOM:

Now, the UK has actually won Eurovision five times… the last time, we can see above.

Is this the year they win again? No. Politics being what they are… nah, son. But they put up a fun, soulful song, and Michael Rice is feeling it. And since the Irish are feeling pity on our former bad neighbors by issuing them as many Irish passports as they can… well, what the hell.

So, of the Big Five Plus One… I’m going for Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom.

Onto the Second Semi’s… which will hopefully be more fun! Like, actual fun. Not me writhing in pain wondering what I ever did to San Marino to deserve that song….


Eurovision 2019 Semi Finals Part 1, Part 2.. YEAH YEAH!!!

May 4, 2019

Back to the road to Israel, with the wonders of Eurovision. Australia, Czech Republic stood out, Georgia got a ‘why not?’

Starting back up with… GREECE! With Egypt, a parent of Western European civilization and home of ‘Alcohol Is Free!’ one of my favorite non-winning past Eurovision songs.

This is nice. It’s a late Annie Lennox song, with a little Sam Smith and Florence And The Machine. Not massively memorable, but actually enjoyable.

Followed by… HUNGARY!!. Great swordsmanship tradition, horrible politics. But hey.. that’s Europe for ya.

Starts off feeling it like Everlast’s “What’s It Like” but then wanders off and gets lost. Not bad, not great. I have questions if not concerns about the dude’s hair. Ok.. concerns.

Next up… from the land of beautiful melodies and roads built around troll houses.. ICELAND!!!

Every year I joke about how Germany should send Rammstein. Cause.. that would rock. Well, Iceland said ‘Fuck you. We’ll build our own Rammstein. With pretty people in S&M gear and better gender diversity!’ And I dig it. Creepy as hell, but this is a decent song and anytime you have a BDSM collective sponsored by a soda pop company, well… SEND THEM TO EUROVISION!!!

Now… from a tiny nation that Trump considers to be scarily aggressive… MONTENEGRO!!!

Montengero has done some strange stuff before.. sadly this is just a travel video. It features country style music, with an obscure folk instrument (a Eurovision staple.) These are very nice, pretty people, and this song is awful.

Next from a land of great beer, mime, and the late film maker Krzysztof Kieślowski, POLAND!!!

Ok.. this is more like it. Folk music mixed with crunchy rock and vaguely Beatlesque lyrics. This pure Eurovision crack, evocative of the Bulgarian Womens Choir… this is good. I’d like to see it move on.

Onto the country that hosted in 2018.. PORTUGAL!!!

The fuck is this? No, really.. the fuck is this? Conan Osiris is a huge cultural mashup… mayhaps appropriation… which could score well with the judges. But.. the fuck is this?

Surely SAN MARINO can do better.. oh god, no…

Yeah… a bad Eurodisco number with an old guy in a bad suit. I shouldn’t be cruel. But I have no choice.

Now.. from the land of Tesla… our song from SERBIA!!!

Feels very ‘Dust In The Wind,’ dark love and submission… not a fave of mine, but it has a shot. At least it has some feels.

Finally, last band of Semi Finals Part 1- SLOVENIA!

This is a little understated, moody… great lounge music. Maybe a live performance with more emotion will take it further, but I like it. I could see it ending up on a Late Night Tales compilation a couple years from now.

So, of these.. Greece, Iceland, Poland and Slovenia stand out for me with these.. though Slovenia is more like a moodily slouch out for me than stand out. 21 countries of the first two semis will make it in.. so there are lot of chances for these groups to make the finals.

Madonna is playing the finals, it seems. Good for Eurovision… kinda bad for her.



Eurovision 2019: Semi Finals Part 1, Part…1. YEAH!

April 30, 2019

Eurovision has 41 contestants… 35 in the semi’s.. 6 guaranteed in the finals either because they pay so much for the competition (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK) or are hosting ( Israel.)

So.. I’m getting not four… five posts out of this.


Let’s start off with eight of the acts from the First Semis.

AUSTRALIA! Which is not in Europe, but has great music, and everyone was happy they were brought in.

Ok.. so we’ve got Techno Kate Bush Doing “Frozen” With Operatic Flourishes.  This was made to hit Eurovision right in the love buttons. Plus… what the hell… is that a a lady in a dress flying around, or is she supposed to be a centaur? I DON’T KNOW AND I DON’T CARE.

I often say other countries are trying to be Ireland. Australia is trying to be Sweden and I am loving it.

Next up… BELARUS!

Yeah… Zena is cute, but is doing Euro Christina Aguilera With Dubstep. Meh.

But hey.. she was the Russian voice of Moana, so she has that going for her!

Next up… land of EDM, Chocolate, Beer, and a colonial history even more terrifying than the UK’s… BELGIUM!!!

I dig this one a little more. Not just for the video production, but there’s some umph to it, and Belgium always sends this skinny dudes who aren’t quite pretty, but aren’t.. not… pretty. Give them a shot!

Now… from a divide island where your stolen luxury car may have ended up.. CYPRUS!

Ok… this a proper Eurovision video. Sexy people, incoherent imagery, more sexy people, wet sexy people, more Xtina/Brittany pop sounds. It’s a fun song, hey.. they just smashed shit up!!!… but not a winner.

Now from the Czech Republic:

Ok.. this is fun. The Lake Malawi want to make world wide, and bring to mind Paul Weller in his Style Council period and Scritti Politti. These guys are a nice mix of 80’s sound, Daft Punk production, and aren’t creepy. I don’t know if they’ll do well, but after Australia, my next pick.

Now.. Estonia going Country, Aviici style:

Ok… I blame the Mumford sons for this as well. This isn’t a bad song, Just could be any song, anytime. A pleasant remember that the world loves US Country music too.

And now… from the country that gave us ‘HARD ROCK HALLELUJAH’. FINLAAANNDD:

oh.. Lordy.. no. Finland is one of my favorite Eurovision countries because they usually are interesting, and fun, even if not great. Despite having Sansa Stark dancing on a spinning cube, this song is just… blah. Oh, so blah.


Finally, another country dealing with Russia pushing their borders westward on a daily basis, GEORGIA:

Georgia is also decent rugby nation, often suggested as a replacement for Italy in the Six Nations Tournament. As for the song… look. not a fave, but Oto is at least pouring emotion into it, and has some traditional choral singers backing him. Not a fave, but respect. And look.. that girl with the cute hair and Captain Kirk sweater is trying to feel it!

Ok.. so First Semi’s Part One… Australia and the Czech Republic stand out. Georgia get’s special mention because at least the dude sounds like he cares.

Next, First Semi’s Part Two followed by the Guaranteed Finalists, and SECOND SEMI’S.. where my countries ( Ireland, Austria, and Romania) are competing!!!

Eurovision 2019:Off To Israel We Go…

April 30, 2019

Eurovision is known for many things… politics between the member nations, odd musical choices that leave the world equally amazed and confused, and a lot of fun, the UK being shat on even when they actually have a good performance… a lot of things.

Israel won the Eurovision Song Contest in 2018 with this little ditty..

It’s actually hit some charts, and has been picked up by drag queens… which is the height  of heights for a Eurovision song.

I’m not being snarky. A Eurovision Song having a life outside of the following  Eurovision doesn’t always happen. After this post I’ll break down the two-semi finals into two posts, hopefully react to the winners in a timely fashion, and get some reaction to the finals.

I’m especially focused on my ancestral countries… Ireland- of which I’m a dual citizen, avid Irish Rugby supporter, and most connected to. Last years song from Ireland featured male dancer, gay romance, and irritated Vladimir Putin. It was also catchy as hell, and deserved to do better in the points.

Austria- home of Conchita Wurst, who SLAYED IT in 2014 with the best Bond movie song that never was. To be fair, Ceasr Sampson’s 2018 entry ‘Nobody But You’ was good, but it wasn’t… THIS:


And finally, Romania. Now, last year’s number by The Humans was great… but I wanted to post 2015’s entry. Eurovision is best when it’s songs have some heart, and Voltaj’s ‘Start All Over Again’ was about how millions of Romanians have to work abroad, leaving children behind. And while Romania will absolutely lean into the gothic imagery of Dracula or the folk sounds, it was nice to see them just speak a little bit of reality.

Oh… and Romanian history? If you don’t know… and I don’t know enough… it’s rough. When you’re basically a football between the Ottomans and Russia for most of your history, run by a Stalinist madman for decades, and you’re people abroad are targeted by bastards like the UKIP, yeah… you get to have some emotion about it.

Sadly, Eurovision won’t be shown live in the US this year. LOGO is not airing it again, so back to the YouTubes for,

Next post, Semi-Finalist Group 1, Part 1!



May 23, 2015

A little close to the finals, but hey, life happens. And now, onto a look at the 2nd Semifinals. Of my picks:

Ireland (IRELAND!), Portugal and the Czech Republic were sent home.

Lithuania, Israel, Latvia, Azerbaijan, Cyprus and Slovenia made it.

I turned my benevolent gaze away from Poland,  Sweden, Norway, and Montenegro. Yet they progressed?

Six of mine made it through. WUZ IRELAND ROBBED?

Yup. Good song, real performers, Molly was a charming colleen, the fuck? Mad you can’t vote England off earlier, targeted their nearest neighbor? YE BASTARDS KNOW THE FIRES AWAIT FOR YE YE FECKING FECKS!!!!
I feel, better. Now. Let’s look at my winners:

Cyprus – John Karayiannis with One Thing I Should Have Done

Still digging it. Sure, mellow, no back up impressionistic dancers. Good song, good job, son.

Azerbaijan – Elnur Huseynov with Hour of the Wolf

Ok… I loved the simplicity of the original video, still love the song. BUT TEH FUCK WITH THE WEREWOLVE BALLET DANCERS? Honestly, besides loving the song, the best part was when he pushed away the Baku Lycanthrope Dance Troupe and the crowd went wild. Kick ass, Elnur, but please, go to a simpler performance. You don’t need the goth glitz.

Latvia – Aminata with Love Injected

Good job. Good balance of the fierce and the fromage. Definitely needs to be bought by the CW channel for their next vampire love triangle show.

Israel – Nadav Guedj with Golden Boy

Love that Nadav got the New Kids On The Block to be his back up dancers. Fun song, has some chutzpah about the time limit, and golden sneakers made of the Ark of the Covenant. GO FOR THE GOLD, BOYCHIK!!

Lithuania – Monika Linkyte & Vaidas Baumila with This Time

Respect for the straight, gay and lesbian kissing. Monika, girl, you fine. The song is a nightmare one night stand of ‘Glee,’ ‘Nashville’ and the Mumford and Sons coming to kill the parents who abandoned it for the wolves to eat… ONLY IT ATE THE WOLVES AND CAME FOR VENGEANCE.
Plus Baidas looks like a serial killer. Sorry, Monkia. Run while you can. I can’t support this Branson worthy cheesefest any longer.

Slovenia – Maraaya with Here For You

Not perfect, but poppy and catchy.Yeah.. the air musicians are kinda strange. As are the ear phones. BUT GO YOU STRANGE PEOPLE!!!

Here’s the ones the rest of Europe picked:

Poland – Monika Kuszynska with In the Name of Love

God.This.Song.Sucks. The staging is bland, and you cover the wheel chair with a wedding dress? Why? Plus enough cherry blossom imagery to make even the most dedicated kotaku have an allergic reaction.

Sweden – Mans Zelmerlow with Heroes

Ok. So Mans is the the Swedish manly version of the Dazzler, making really crappy music into solid light projections and holograms while he dances awkwardly and smiles about demons in his brain. SWEDEN, YOU CAN DO SO MUCH BETTER!!!

Norway – Morland and Debrah Scarlett with A Monster Like Me

Uhm… this song live is so much better than the video. No, really. They dropped the weird food fight and stiff performances, and SANG THE HELL OUT OF IT. You won me back, land of Ibsen.

Montenegro – Knez with Adio

They liked the angry back up singers? Knez has a world fan base us Americans don’t get? No clue.

So, of the  Second Semi’s, I’m backing Israel, Latvia, Azerbaijan, Cyprus and Slovenia, with Norway kicking Lithuania to the curb. From the first semi’s I’m picking Estonia, Romania, Belgium and Serbia. Estonia is my overall favorite. From the guaranteed countries and the guest- UK, Austria and Australia.

Estonia remains my pick. UK doesn’t have a chance in hell, but I hope they do well. Getting into the top 15 would be amazing for them. BEST OF LUCK, NEIGHBORS!

So, tune in Sunday night, and we’ll see what happens!!


May 20, 2015

So, today, it began. Cheese, politics and yes TALENT coalesced in Vienna for the first of the three nights of Eurovision, 2015. I of course, was at work, so I followed along with the live stream from the Daily Mirror. Say what you well, but they’ve been good for this.

Oh, and I finally remembered how to properly embed video. Push the button.


I did pretty darn good on my picks. Of the final 10, 5 out of my 6 picks made it in. Only Macedonia didn’t make it. Shame… ‘Autumn Leaves’ was a good song. Energetic performance, slightly out of sync poc backing trio… different feel from the video. Hell with it. YOU WUZ ROBBED!

Honorable mention for Denmark. Anti Social Media, you tried, lads. The early 1960’s waves fondly and wishes you well.

Dishonorable mention for Moldova. I still don’t think it was a good song, but… fuck it. You went for it you mad juvenile delinquent sexhibitionist! And your performance was backed by the Super Troopers! RESPECT WITH MY SCORN AND DERISION!

Conchita was a fabulous and gracious host, btw. Ok,  let’s look at who made it to the next round.

My picks that made it-

Albania – Elhaida Dani with ‘I’m Alive’ –

Ok. Points for the simple performance, but it was rough. I’m glad she made the finals, but she needs to get some tea, honey and oomph. fast.

Hungary – Boggie with ‘Wars for Nothing’

Still a lovely little ditty, but the cocktail dresses and take away from the performance a bit. Plus, it just feels flat.

Estonia – Elina Born & Stig Rasta with ‘Goodbye to Yesterday’

THERE YA GO! Simple choreography, dramatic lighting, CHEMISTRY,

Georgia – Nina Sublatti with ‘Warrior’

OHMYGOD THE FUCKING MORRIGAN IS BEING SWALLOWED BY HER LIGHTS AND FOG!  Fierce! But, not really compelling. Glad it made the semi’s, but not the winner. Unless she goes with blood magic. MORRIGAN! BEHAVE!

Serbia – Bojana Stamenov with Beauty Never Lies

Struggling with earpieces? Bizarre and simultaneously over explanatory choreography? STRIP TEASE AND DISCO? you go to the finals, girl!

Finalists I didn’t pick-

Belgium – Loic Nottet with Rhythm Inside

The song is a massive earworm, plus Loic is just less creepy, more charismatic live. I think Belgium has a better chance than I thought before the live performance.

Armenia – Genealogy with Face the Shadow

Ok. Softened the imagery, but the lyrics made clear this is one of the happiest/self-helpy “FUCK YOU’S!’ ever,. Minus that, the song was still five songs at once, and overly dramatic. Crowd loved it, me less so.

Russia – Polina Gagarina with A Million Voices

Girl, that dress is selling what you don’t got. Just saying. Supposedly, this is the front runner. Screw that. Bland, fake dramatics, and THIS IS FROM PUTIN’S RUSSIA. Nope

Romania -Voltaj with All Over Again

Decent live performance, nice message. You won me back guys. Glad you made it.

Greece – Maria-Elena

Snoooorrreeeee. Wait, did I miss something? Sorry. I support Greece in their economic struggles and trying to right their government after a dip into right wing lunacy, but the song sucks.

So, we got some swaps here. From the finals, I’m picking with my #1 pick: Estonia, adding Romania and Belgium. I’m keeping Serbia, because they just went for it.
See you late Thursday, early Friday for more


May 15, 2015

I’ve been barreling through the 38 (38!?!?!) entries to Eurovision 2015, learned about whole countries I never head of before (HATE THE SONG, BUT LOVE YOU, SAN MARINO! PEACE!), failed to dodge the Europolitics and my own biases, but hey.. that’s Eurovision for ya.

The first eight of the Second semi finals were a little disappointing. I picked Ireland without reservations, Portugal, the
Czech Republic and Lithiuania made it through with mixed enthusiasm.

Onto the Final Nine.

1) Israel            Nadav Guedj            Golden Boy

Yeah, politically, this one is dead in the water. That being said.. it’s actually a fun song. Tel Aviv shouting out to “THIS IS HOW WE DO IT?” Rainbow flags? (Accusations of pink washing to follow…) And an actually good tune? Yup. One of my picks.

2) Latvia            Aminata            Love Injected

Nice Latvia didn’t just go for the sexy-sexy. Wait.. nice that they DID. Another song perfect for a tv show title.. CW, start watching Eurovision. Not bad. A pick.

3) Azerbaijan            Elnur Huseynov            Hour Of The Wolf

Save for some last minute extra gospel choir cheesiness ( cause gospel choirs are what Azerbaijan is all about.) this is just a damn good song. Turkish version ain’t bad either. Wow. Competition has gotten FIERCE!!

4) Iceland            Maria Olafs            Unbroken

Remember Denmark’s Emmelie de Forest? Well, Iceland found a distant relative hers, I guess.. and, yeah. Kinda disappointed. Iceland puts out so much amazing music, that they pick this? YOU CAN DO BETTER, GUYS!!

5) Sweden            Måns Zelmerlöw            Heroes

This guy is either a big Aviici or Firefly fan, or both. Song sucks. At one point he sings “The Greatest Anthem Ever Heard!”
Or is it a tribute?

6) Switzerland            Mélanie René            Time To Shine

Yay, fierce woman. Serious boo on the Native American drag.. unless she’s trying to be a Viking. No… later in the video, fringe leather jackets. Yup, Native American drag. Not a great song, we’ll just pretend this never happened, Switzerland.

7) Cyprus            John Karayiannis            One Thing I Should Have Done

Wow. Just a good, simple song. No snark necessary. Good job, John. PICK!

8) Slovenia            Maraaya            Here For You

Naked bored chick singing in the snow while her band’s instruments are ruined by said snow? Dude air-guitaring to everything?


Actually, a fun song. Another pick. Way to go SLOVENIA!

9) Poland            Monika Kuszyńska            In The Name Of Love

Wait, what? Was I typing a blog post about Eurovision? Sorry. Song put me to sleep. Much love, Poland, I guess Monika is world famous there, but sorry. lame.

So, of the final 17, here are my picks:

Czech Republic

Plan is to watch as much of semi’s on YouTube, repost, and spread the joy! And the musical cheese.

So, anyone else watching?


May 15, 2015

So, you can look back on my last 3 posts, checking out the first 16 and guaranteed grand finalists in this years Eurovision aka ‘Building Bridges’ aka ‘We don’t really hate the UK, but we we kind do.’

We’re now moving on to the next 17 countries, in two posts. Why? Because there is only so much Eurovision cheese even I can take at a time. It’s good cheese.. sometimes great cheese. But a lot of cheese.

1) Lithuania            Monika Linkytė and Vaidas Baumila            This Time

The video claims these people heard the song for the first time. I don’t believe that for a second. Points for Monkia – points off for her and Vaidas clearly having little chemistry, points for the gay and possible poly people listening. It has a pleasant ‘Nashville’ meets ‘Mumford & Sons’ vibe. But bland.

2) Ireland            Molly Sterling            Playing With Numbers

Ok. Not counting my massive bias towards Ireland- TWO TIME SIX NATIONS RUGBY CHAMPIONS, BOYO!- I like this song. The bards of Europe, having sent Jedward twice, a lame techno act, and rioted in the studio over the last Eurovision pick, did right with this one. Emotional, yet not sloppily sentimental. Not too many pointless vocal acrobatics. And no awkward ‘fuck off’s’ to other nations. Yup… one of my picks.

3) San Marino            Anita Simoncini & Michele Perniola            Chain of Lights

Ok… I didn’t know San Marino was a country. My bad. But, their bad for this cheesy travelouge/industrial promotion featuring magic iPhones and generic lyrics of working together. Yes, I get that being a small nation surrounded by Italy can be tough.. like how Austin is surrounded by Texas.. but, sorry.

4) Montenegro            Knez            Adio

If you ever get the chance, party with Montengrans. Seriously. In fact, look at this previous Eurovision entry to see a REAL Montengran party.


Knez is an aging Ricky Martin wanna be. Sorry.

5) Malta            Amber            Warrior

So, like, I have to become a Warrior, for like, love, and stuff. And Amber… kinda scary girl. And why is Death her mutli-instrumentalist/DJ? Nice, blandly epic song that should be the sound track of a CW show. Not grabbing me. Sorry, Malta.

6) Norway            Mørland & Debrah Scarlett            A Monster Like Me

Ok.. Morland is prettier. Sorry, Debrah. Don’t poison my wine. They are bored, we are bored. C’MON, NORWAY! YOU GAVE US ‘YLVIS!’

7) Portugal            Leonor Andrade            Há Um Mar Que Nos Separa

I have no idea what Leonor is pissed off about, but she’s singing over a decent U2 lost b-side. What the hell! She’s a pick.

8) Czech Republic            Marta Jandová and Václav Noid Bárta            Hope Never Dies

Muscled dude who sounds like Danzig and fauxhawk girl who I guess met at the gym sing so soulfully their words set the air on fire in the shape of their words? SINGING A BOND MOVIE SONG? FUCK IT! QUELLE FROMMAGE! THEY ARE IN!!

Ok. So the first eight of the second 17 was kind lame. Of the 8, I pick

Ireland- IRELAND!!!!
Czech Republic
Lithiuania.. ok. you just squeeze in. Thank Monika.



May 14, 2015


So, this series of four is now a series of five. Why?

Because the American charged into the challenge without researching, looking the fine cultural details, and kinda not caring.


You see, Eurovision has politics. Oh does it have politics. People vote in blocks to favor their region, to kiss ass to other nations, mostly to piss of the United Kingdom. Every one from the UK- I mean everyone, be they from Wales, Scotland, England or Northern Irish backing the UK in the competition – believes deep in their hearts. Everyone else in Europe agrees.

Another big political sticking point is the BIG FOUR.. no, BIG FIVE pre-qualified nations. In 2000, France,Germany,Spain and the UK demanded to be pre-qualified since they spent the most money on the bloody thing. In 2010, Italy got added to the final list. One of the several reasons Turkey bolted after 2013. Oh, and Russia is trying to organize their own. because they know they aren’t likely to win. And like the old days of the Warsaw Pact and Russia somehow ALWAYS WINNING AT WARSAW PACT FOOTIE, they want that old guaranteed win feeling back.

A side note- please do not assume the slightly (ridiculously obvious) anti-Putin tone is because I’m American born, bred, and based. I could be mad at Putin, because as an Irish dual-citizen, Russian bombers buzzed over Ireland to get to the UK over the channel. I could be mad because of the invasions of Georgia and Ukraine and the turning of Russia from a broken democracy to a theofascist kleptocracy that’s making gay bashing the new pogrom.

I know America is an evil sprawling capitalist consumerist culture destroying nightmare who invaded Iraq for no good reason. We also happen to be a place and culture everyone wants to be part of, where we are ever moving toward better diversity and inclusion, and oh yeah… are doing a good job of fighting our internal war hawks from going on further pointless invasions.

We have so many issues, we have volumes. Putin’s Russia has so many volumes they have libraries.

Got it? Good.

Anyhoo… besides the big 5 we have the Austria and Australia. Austria because they won last with their bearded beauty, Conchita Wurst.


Can’t deal with bearded beauties? Piss off. Again, Eurovision’s best songs are also great Bond movie songs. HEAR THAT, UK? MAKE IT HAPPEN!!! CONCHITA SINGS THE THEM TO SPECTRE!!!

Here is Austria’s pick for this year

Austria            The Makemakes            I Am Yours

Not bad. Actually, I’m really liking it. Good, laid-back 70’s vibe, I could totally see this song in a Cameron Crow movie. Nice change from Conchita- her beard is far prettier than the pianist’s, though. Like Denmark, Austria probably doesn’t want to win again, because, well, IT’S FUCKING EXPENSIVE, but this is a genuinely good song.

Australia is in as a guest country. Since so many Aussie’s have sung at the thing, and are part of the bloody Euro-culture, why not? More political maneuverings to follow as this is only a ‘one-time thing.’

So, this is their big toe in the water.

Australia            Guy Sebastian – Tonight Again

Cool. Nice Bruno Mars/Jamiroquai retro vibe. Not the most memorable song ever, but a lot of fun and funk.

Now, for the BIG FOUR, NO… FIVE!!!

Spain            Edurne            Amanecer

Now, Spain puts money in their Eurovision videos. They certainly put some pesetas in this homage to the Lord of The Rings and Ladyhawke- complete with the implicaiton that the real Eurovision trophy IS THE FRICKING ONE RING! And, oh yeah… lots of implied sex. I mean, Mount Doom is all but Mons Pubis. It’s not just me, right? Look, the singer, the model, the tiger and the oh-so noble falcon are FABULOUS, but the song is bland. Dramatic, sweeping bland.

France            Lisa Angelk            N’oubliez Pas

Blah. The video is a lovely tour of the French coast.. hey look, A GERMAN PILL BOX!, And yes… the sentiment is important, rebuild in peace, always remember. But… sorry. Blah. Bland. Also, I get grudges- eh. Just feels off.

Germany            Ann Sophie            Black Smoke

There are lot of jokes I won’t be making about the title. Fun song, but honestly, meh. I get English isn’t her first language, but I’m not getting any real impact from her singing. I mean, wo ist der Schwung? Der Oomph?  Blah.

Italy            Il Volo            Grande Amore

The only grand love I see is for American culture. I mean, come on, guys. Loud noises. OPERATIC SWEEPS. We play the clay scene form “Ghost?” Forget about it.

United Kingdom            Electro Velvet- Still In Love With You

Honestly, the UK, as stated, doesn’t have a chance in hell. Politics and what not. That being said, fun song. Feels English- poppy swinging fun with a delightful touch of cultural appropriation- and both the song and video would have ruled ‘Top Of The Pops’ for two minutes in 1986. This is one of my picks.

Yes, I’m rooting for the Rugby rivals. Sure, I want Ireland to win ( and have someone else fecking pay for it), but the UK deserves more than being in the lower 20 for… for… REASONS!

So, picks so far, both Semi-Finals 1 and the guaranteed finalists:

United Kingdom.

Maybe I’m biased for bands singing in English. So sue me. But I try.

Next up, the last 17 nations in two parts.