Friday, 25 May 2012

Eurovision 2012 Countdown: My thoughts on the second semi-final 2012

 Hello Eurovision fans!

 Last night was the second semi-final of this year's Eurovision Song Contest. I wasn't able to watch it live, but I will watch it now and share my thoughts with you on each act as they perform.

 Of the countries that I know are competing in this semi-final, the one I am most looking forward to seeing is "Euphoria," by Loreen, the much raved about Swedish entry in this year's Eurovision. I have seen the music video and her performance is very impressive, and I'm keen to see how it translates to the Eurovision stage; whether she still has the same charisma and the song can still fill the arena. 

 I am looking forward to all of the songs, particularly those I haven't heard before. I love Eurovision! It means that provided that each country does what it's supposed to do and picks the best song it can; we should have the joy of listening to forty-two - or however many countries enter - brilliant songs each year.

 Let us begin!

 I am impressed with the hosts making the effort to do the welcome message in French and German; I'm not so sure about the banter afterwards. But I am very glad to see one of last year's winners, Eldar, back to host! He is too gorgeous not to, really!

1) Serbia - I got excited hearing that this guy is somewhat of a Eurovision veteran, in the hope that with the help of his experience he may have perfected the winning formula for a Eurovision song. And the song is quite beautiful - not a winner, I don't think; not unforgettable. But it is a nice song.

2) F. Y. R. Macedonia - I like this. It took a while for the beat to kick in, and whilst I have nothing against slow songs, in fact there are many that I love, I feel this particular song sounds a lot better upbeat than downbeat. Overall I like this song, but for me it's not a winner.

3) The Netherlands - I quite like this. She has a nice voice; quite unusual. 

4) Malta - Again, I wasn't expecting much, because they looked like one of these arrogant boybands. But I was pleasantly surprised - they're really good! I really like this song. Very Eurovision! 

5) Belarus - Typical shouty pop-rock song. Not really my thing, but I accept that they're good at what they do. It's not the worst song I've heard so far, not by a long shot. And the guitarists' falling-backwards thing is a bit odd... But overall these guys are okay.

6) Portugal - I LOVE the Portuguese language. And I quite like this song. It's not one of the stand-out songs so far, but it's pretty.

7) Ukraine - My first thought was, how much does this sound like the French song this year (Echo by Anggun)? It seriously does. But I love both songs. In this song from Ukraine, I love Gaitana's energy and passion during her performance; you can tell she's really enjoying it and the song is very bouncy and dance to-able.

8) Bulgaria - This is very generic and Eurovision-y, but I do like it. She looks confident and has very good stage presence - she can hold the whole stage completely alone, and that is no mean feat.

9) Slovenia - I love her dress! The song is unusual; it sounds quite dark and chilling in places. On the whole I quite like it, but I don't think it's quite good enough to win.

10) Croatia - I like this! I like the tune, and the beat, and the bell/chime sounds in the chorus, which I think just add so much to the song; it's incredible how one such little touch has the power to transform a song.

11) Sweden - Well, here she is, and she's just as captivating as ever! Truly charismatic. When I first saw her performance of this song I thought she was emulating Björk a bit too much, but now I think she has found her own style and persona. She certainly is very different to other artists I have seen. But is there really need for all the strobing? I could barely watch during the chorus, it was so heavy. This song can stand on its own without the nonsense.

12) Georgia - I hate things that are this degrading to women. And the song's not great either. Which is a shame because I've tended to dislike past Georgian Eurovision entries for various reasons, and I had been hoping this song might change that. It hasn't.

13) Turkey - I loved the men turning into a ship! Otherwise, an average song in my opinion.

14) Estonia - Quite pretty; not amazing.

15) Slovakia - Here we go, there's always one of these, isn't there... big, shouty, stroby rock song. This one is actually pretty good. Again, the strobing is ridiculous; how are you even meant to look at the screen?

16) Norway - What a swarmy-looking fellow... But you never know, appearances can be deceiving. Anyway, I didn't think a lot of the song.

17) Bosnia and Herzegovina - Well, this is pretty. A nice, peaceful change from the previous two shouty songs! I really like this one.

18) Lithuania - Quite a good song, but not fantastic.

 Overall I have really enjoyed this semi-final, and the Waterloo in the interval! It was great seeing the past five Eurovision winners brought together, and I commend whoever had that idea, and everyone who made it possible. And I would LOVE to see Alexander Rybak and Lena fall in love... they look great together and they would be the perfect Eurovision couple!

 I wasn't too surprised at who got through to the final, except I don't really get why the ship people of Turkey seem to have been some huge favourite. But I must say, seeing the Norwegian guy's emotion at getting through, he seems a bit less swarmy now. So I will give him a chance.

 Tomorrow night's final looks set to be amazing. Bring it on!

 Thanks for reading.

 Liz x

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