This year they had two semi finals with voting restricted on the night – this was apparently designed to stop the tactical voting by neighbouring countries (ie Greece and Cyprus are now on separate evenings, as are Finland and Sweden, Slovenia and Croatia etc) and get a better mix of countries on the final night.
A brief description of the first batch of finalists who got through on Tuesday...
Mid tempo power ballad sung by attractive blonde lady with blue dress – heinous lyric alert = rhyming “sometimes” with “bad crimes” in the very first verse.
As above, but slightly more Celine Dion-esque. The ladies even look/dress similarly, but the Polish one has worse fake tan/capped teeth.
Obscure central Asian countries bringing the camp! Hurray! Completely bonkers falsetto power ballad sung by bloke with blue white hair dressed as an angel, duetting with bloke in black leather dressed as the devil. Meanwhile, sundry nymphets enact a Meat Loaf video with goblets and expressive dancing.
More crazitude, this time from Sarajevo’s answer to Bjork, and her slappable Pinnochio-esque brother. Also there are grannies knitting on stage singing backing vocals. Once you get over the whimsy, the song is actually very good and almost indie-ish, with a driving bass and some cool tempo changes. My fave so far, I think.
More hard rock from the Finns, this time in an Iron Maiden stylee from some shirtless metal dudes, who are sadly not dressed as goblins this time.
Ballady duet that sounds like something out of a Disney cartoon. The bloke is quite handsome and the lady is wearing a weird dress with glowsticks stuck to it, which would definitely get you booted off Project Runway.
Sensitive ethnic-y sounding power ballad, in typical EV style, sung by young bloke who won Israeli Pop Idol. He is kind of funny looking but has got nice arms.
Gushy ballad by that young dark haired bloke who was on last year and scared the living shit out of me when someone climbed out of a piano mid performance like some freakish Ring/Andrew Lloyd Webber horror hybrid. This year the gimmick is an ice dancer bloke who twizzles round on a teeny tiny ice rink and flirts outrageously with the singer.
Poppy but average sub Beyonce type song sung by very pretty girl who gyrates enthusiastically with male dancers and threatens to escape her bustier
As above, but in Armenian, and less Beyonce, more ethnic-y.
There are also 5 guaranteed entrants but I have only heard bits of these…
Comedy entry by old bloke with elvis wig. The chorus entreats one to “do the robot”, it seems.
Bland soul pop from Andy the Bin Man off X Factor. Song is kind of forgettable and won’t do well for us, I fear.
Sounds a bit like the french song off Flight of the Conchords – ie, awesome.
A girl group. I have no memory of the song at all!
They won last year so get an automatic entry – this is a ethnic-y ballad with violins etc, sung by a very serious lady in a long dress.
We’ll know the rest of the finalists on Thursday evening!