Iceland ups up their game

Iceland always seem to bring something interesting to the table in Eurovision. We love the fact that the island is virtually bursting with creativity and during the past few years we’ve seen entries from a wide variation of genres from modern pop, heavy power ballad rock, eurotrash at its finest, a quintessential Eurovision ballad, ragtime jazz, symphonic rock to whatever the heck Silvia Night was all about. Some of it has been pretty mediocre stuff tough and at first we weren’t too thrilled about the selected entry this year either. But now we’re starting to think they’re on to something after all. This might be one to watch!

“Ég á líf” brings us in an almost sacral state of mind. It can best be described as a hymn. Perhaps not with a religious content, but it’s a praise to life and being alive and it’s all so small and simple and so big and complicated all at once. The animation in the preview video brings back memories from our childhood when the flannelgraph was used to vividly illustrate tales about the meaning of life and everything in between. Our shared cultural heritage with the Icelandic makes us relate instantly to the story told here. But then again we think this is something universal that will translate over both cultural and language barriers. That’s why it’s a wise move to keep the song in Icelandic, it will make it stand out even more.

Eyþór Ingi Gunnlaugsson is a new face on the ESC stage and he looks like a cross between Jesus and Thor the Viking God. His performance in the national final was competent, but it didn’t quite give us the same wow factor as the brilliant preview video does. Hopefully he will step up his game and get the lift he needs with bigger and better staging and the energy from the crowd in Malmö arena.

In a sea of dreary ballads this year, this one really stands out in all it’s simplicity and with a profoundness only matched by Italy’s poetic and sincere piano ballad. If the voters across Europe will fall for Eyþór’s rugged charm or Marco’s sober smoothness remains to be seen!

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