It was, in my view, the best Eurovision Song Contest in years. The staging – apart from a near fatal wardrobe malfunction involving last year’s winner right at the start – was breathtaking. The production was pacy, the songs were the strongest in ages and it was worth the price of admission just to see the Bosnia & Herzegovina bloke give his country’s scores.
Donning my hat as ESC numbers’ man, it seems that there has been something of a swing back to the west and north of the continent. There were, perhaps, a few too many eastern beats to be heard and that might have overwhelmed some of the voters.
I have to say I still don’t “get” the Norwegian landslide (you can see the song on the TFC Link Of The Day), but non-threatening cuteness coupled with violins and folkloric overtones has a certain universal appeal. Is it me or does it sound a bit like “The Devil Went Down to Georgia”? And there’s been a bit of a row over the winner, read about it here
Azerbaijan was fab and the Ukrainian performance (porn overtones and all) was a showstopper! Albania ruined a great song with onstage carry-ons that left me completely bemused.
France scored well with a classic ballad, while the UK did much better than it deserved. When I first heard “It’s My Time” I thought that it sounded like “I Am What I Am” (from ‘La Cage Au Folles’) but it never got there….if you know what I mean. Jade Ewen’s performance was astonishingly good, but her huge effort couldn’t prop up a mediocre chanson. As Rod Liddle wrote in The Times: “Listening to an Andrew Lloyd Webber song is like being trapped in a lift with a flatulent middle manager from Stoke; you hammer away at the emergency button but the choking sensation continues: you suspect it will continue for eternity”.
On a kinder note, Greece, Germany and mini-Ronan from Denmark all deserve a koala stamp.
And what a night we had at Neverwhere! Many thanks to the staff there, the guys from Oneworld and all those lovely Joy folk. As for Swish Everyready…you are my Alexander Rybak in a frock! The crowd seemed to be swayed as much by the amount of flesh on display at Eurovision as they were by the quality of the songs. Thank god Andrew Lloyd Webber kept his kit on!! Now to compare and contrast…..Moscow on the left, Neverwhere on the right
1.Norway 1. Germany
2. Iceland 2. Finland
3. Azerbaijan 3. Ukraine
4. Turkey 4. Spain
5. United Kingdom 5. Greece
6. Estonia 6. Moldova
7. Greece 7. Norway
8. France 8. Azerbaijan
9. Bosnia & Herzegovina 9. Sweden
10. Armenia 10. Estonia
There’s diversity for you!! But there was a musical move to a broader Eurovision church seen in both locations.
It was great to chat with so many people in the crowd at Neverwhere and find the ESC passion and knowledge burning bright. It is a Grand Final for so many of us and this year it was a classic. Eurovision is alive and well…go the Norges next year. Tak tak tusen tak to Moscow and onto to Oslo.