Hungary, Israel and Malta

HungaryAWS: Viszlát Nyár

AWS will be shouting at us in Hungarian to the background of heavy metal music. The performance contains all the endearing metal characteristics:  brutal guitar riffs, relentless drumming and mid-pitch screaming. Whist true to the genre, AWS manages to squeeze in a Eurovision-style keychange – impressive. I think the bio description says it all: “The band wrote their Eurovision entry, Viszlát Nyár, themselves”

Review by Mariella Herberstein

IsraelNetta: TOY

‘Pam pam pa hoo, Turram pam pa hoo’ – no truer words have been sung at Eurovision. Admittedly, the lyrics are senseless (even Wonder Women can’t rescue them), but the song is catchy, poppy,  quirky and could be, dare I say it,  a winner! Not since Dana International (in 1998) was Israel the favourite for Eurovision, so I have high hopes for Netta – douze points from me!

Review by Mariella Herberstein

Malta Christabelle: Taboo

Christabelle’s song is set in a dystopian future, where ruthless tyrants stage brutal fights and go ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha (in that tyrannical fashion). Despite being savagely oppressed, Christabelle keeps her soul intact and travels to Lisbon for Eurovision. Sadly she does not make it through the Semi-finals, which will probably not bode well for her upon returning to Malta. End of story.

Review by Mariella Herberstein

 

Greece & Hungary

Greece

This is Love by Demi

 

I had high hopes for Greece this year, expecting an explosive crescendo after the gentle build up. But sadly, Demi just does not reach the screeching heights that Anja from Denmark easily scales. Still, Demi’s video promotes diversity, which surely is a good thing….although with a maximum of 6 people on stage in Kiev, the effect might be somewhat restraint.

Review by Mariella Herberstein

 

Hungary

Origo by Joci Pápai

Hungary has gone from strength to strength over the last few years. Freddy did a great job last year, and my all time favourite is Katie Wolf back in 2015. But Joci is giving us something special. A haunting ethno sound over electronic beats sung in Hungarian. I like it so much that I am willing to forgive the fiddles and the fact that Joci is a samurai.

Review by Mariella Herberstein

 

Greece, Hungary and United Kingdom

Greece
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Utopian Land by Agros

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Greece has had a tough couple of years: ongoing financial instability, continuous arrival of refugees and now this! Agros dishes up an annoying ethno-urban melange that goes nowhere. It starts off with pesky fiddles that always sound a half-tone off and some Balkan wailing. It’s downhill from there: a simplistic chorus interspersed with rapping (admittedly in Greek). Even the robots back in 2002 (S.A.G.A.P.O.) were more inspiring.

The video alludes to Pheidippides’ heroic run by from Marathon to Athens reporting the defeat of Darius’ Persian forced by Miltiades. And indeed Argos’ 3 minute song does feel like a 42 km run!

Review by Mariella Herberstein

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Hungary
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Pioneer by Freddie

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Hello Hungary!!! Look, I like this a lot (to be honest, I like everything Hungarian), despite the ridiculous hair, the rustic shirt, the superfluous whistling, possibly illegal use of a buddhist monk look-alike drumming and backing singers wielding light sabers. Go Freddie!!!

Review by Mariella Herberstein

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United Kingdom
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You are not alone by Joe and Jack

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With a free-pass into the finals one would hope the UK would take some risks, but in instead they inflict upon us the visually and aurally indistinguishable Joe & Jake. In a clear attempt to tap into the fanbase/profits of the now-defunct One Direction and the now-adult Bieber, we’re dragged through three minutes of being ‘in this together’, ‘ready forever’, and ‘your parachute when you fall’. If you listen carefully, you can hear the gears of the autotuner groaning under the weight of melodic mediocrity.

Review by Tom White