Look, I’m grateful you’re encouraging handwashing in 2022. But also you’re spreading some medical misinformation, and by that I can’t abide. For one, deep under-eye circles say nothing about the status of your liver, unless you’ve been up all night drinking. Two, those spots around your lips say nothing about the attractiveness of your spleen – it’s probably just herpes, and that’s ok. Three, Meghan Markle’s hair secrets are simply beyond our feeble medical understanding. And four, the autonomic nervous system is also the reason why you’re sweating as you eye the vastly superior competition. Serbia, let me clarify one last piece of confusion for you: Fomites are surfaces that can spread infection between people by contact, and hand-washing will help you here. FOMO is what you’ll experience watching the Finals you didn’t make, and no amount of hand-washing or hand-wringing can save you now.
Score: 6/10 for scrub technique, 3/10 for the music
Review by Scott Fabricant
Finland – The Rasmus: Jezebel
Glam rock is back and ticking all the right boxes: heavy mascara, screeching guitars, biblical references, thundering percussion, a chorus snatched from Alice Cooper’s Poison and, best of all, one hell of a key change!
What’s not to love??? Douze points!!
Review by Mariella Herberstein
Lativa – Citi Zēni: Eat Your Salad
Being green is hot, cool and sexy!!! Set against a big-band sound, the non-sensical lyrics (some of which so shocking, they were censured…) and the controlled chaos of this high energy performance is most enjoyable. Joke entries can sometimes go far in Eurovision (Ukraine Verka Serduchka made it to second place in 2007), but I am not sure Latvia is in the same league, although I like the message!!!
Abandoning the usual Portuguese, lead singer Tatanka, delivers a this soulful love ballad in English and in earnest. The overall style is a bit of a hodgepodge…. the band name evokes heavy metal (cum Kill Bill), while the band appears in tuxedos…and then there is that hat. The whole thing is just too confusing for me…not in my top 10.
With possibly the best hairpower of the competition, Hurricane does deliver a classic Eurovision feast – trashy beats, saccharine lyrics and an ill conceived key change with only a hint of the macarena. I sure hope the windmachines will be on full blast!
You know that final song the DJ plays at 3am to clear the dancefloor of drunken buffoons? Well, this is it! Delivered with the confidence often found in people with curly hair, Spain’s sunny boy, Miki is having a great time. And why not – La Venda will inevitably be on rotation in clubs on Ibiza this summer … around 3am.
Waylon seem to be a proper band. Solid vocals, tight playing, this puts them at an immediate disadvantage at Eurovision. Their brand of Dutch-Americana might not be too bad with a couple of pints of NEIPA down at your local on Friday night. Eurovision, however, demands more of performers than competent musicianship (this is hardly required!). No soaring key changes and all the wind machine will do is blow away the atmospheric stage smoke. Sorry lowlanders, another year in the second division for you, I’m off for a pint.
Bald guy with a long beard, women in matching outfits with an appropriate amount of hair for wind machine awesomeness, a drummer with lots of chains and Einstein playing (smoking?) some sortof pipe. Looks promising….…. Nope, boring song.
Adi, Alin, Alex, Alex, Corina and Cristina (must be confusing at band practice) could be the Romanian Brady Bunch, but they aren’t, they’re The Humans (not sure what that implies about the rest of us). “Goodbye” is a pretty standard Eurovision power ballad, likely to get lost in a lukewarm porridge of mediocrity. There is however one hope, that the creepy horror movie mask people from the video make it onto the stage. At least then we can imagine that it might turn into some sort of horror movie version of the Brady Bunch (Un Foarte Brady Halloween?). Otherwise this one isn’t going anywhere near the final.
Azerbaijan has a short but successful history at Eurovision, winning in 2011 and controversially coming 2nd in 2013, perhaps due to an inability to seduce the pivotal Scandinavian bloc. Since then they have been on a bit of a slide and I’m not sure that Diana Hajiyeva, aka Dihaj, can rectify that. That is unless the Datsun 120Y from the video appears on stage, then who knows? Perhaps the nostalgia vote? Or even the sympathy vote? Buy a decent car Dihaj, you can pick up a 180B on Gumtree for $895 (negotiable), last driven in 1995.
This one is great value, two songs in one, part light opera (even sung in Italian) and part soppy pop song, with bonus inspirational talking at the start. Jacques Houdek isn’t called “Mr Voice” (perhaps the subject of the Johnny Farnham hit or did Johnny just predict his existence?) for nothing, he has impressive vocal range. It will be interesting to see if he can pull it off on stage, worth watching for the prospect of a car crash. Otherwise, nothing to see here move on.
If inane lyrics are your thing, look no further than Tijana Bogićević’s In Too Deep. Actually, you probably wouldn’t be reading this if you cared too much about such things. Anyway, Tijana spends much of the song attempting to rhyme “deep” with “deep”, I dunno about this – I reckon using the same word doesn’t count and it isn’t as if there aren’t heaps of options; peep, creep, Meryl Streep. Apparently, this is Tijana’s second crack at Eurovision, she was a backing vocalist in 2011, that song finished a respectable 14th, In Too Deep will be lucky to do so well.
I think the full orchestra is largely ornamental here but it’s a gutsy song with oo-ooo-ooo BVs that amp up the soulful feel nicely. Is it OK to channel Amy Winehouse yet, though? Too soon??
Review by Nansi Richards
I Didn’t Know by Serhat
San Marino is probably most famous for a defunct car race that occurred in Italy. Being used to this level of anonymity, one might have thought that the citizens of the Most Serene Republic (look it up) would shy away from the brutality of Eurovision competition. But no! They have Serhat, a man who seems to think to that singing isn’t necessary at a song contest. If this is an attempt to raise San Marino’s profile, I’d say it is a failure, perhaps they should get the Italians on the phone and ask about the race.
Review by Matt Bruce
Fairy Tail by Eneda Tarifa
Eneda Tarifa manages to pull off a reasonable impression of a James Bond theme song. Unfortunately for Eneda, this isn’t a movie soundtrack, it’s Eurovision and this number doesn’t quite hit the heights required to pull in the douze points. Soaring finale, nope, memorable key change, nope, culturally inappropriate costume, nope. Sorry Albania, no grand final for you.
Review by Matt Bruce
Slow Down by Douwe Bob
This year the Dutch have dispensed with their (unintentionally) entertaining , yet ultimately unsuccessful dalliance with novelty acts. Here we have a boy band meets James Taylor ditty from Douwe Bob and his two mates. A bit dull really, perhaps the Dutch should stick to whatever they are good at for Eurovision [I can’t think of anything at the moment, insert your own thoughts here]. Either way they seem to be stuck in the second division for now, but at least they could have some more fun.