Yay, we just attended the first dress rehearsal for the first semi-final and it is shaping up to be a fabulous show. Here’s our first impressions for you:
01 Finland Sandhja Sing It Away
We keep mixing this up with the Spanish song. Which is not a good sign in our book. Backing singers are sweeping the floor with their microphone stands. Hope they get paid by SVT.
02 Greece Argo Utopian Land
Those who think this won’t qualify are seriously deluded. Sporting steaming hot bloke who rips his shirt off towards the end. Opa!
03 Moldova Lidia Isac Falling Stars
We know we are entering into our final week psychosis when we look at each other in nodding approval for the Moldovan entry. If we can’t have Laika the lonely dog in space in Eurovision, at least we can have a hot cosmonaut doing a summersault on stage.
04 Hungary Freddie Pioneer
Stands on what appears to be a perfectly marbled entrecote, which is pretty great because we love a good steak! He’s quite beefy too, come to think of it. We’ll take him medium rare, thank you. Yum!
Hooray and then some, we just refueled on mexican food and remembered we had a fabulous time yesterday!
We started our day in the press center, where we attended Latvia‘s and Poland‘s press conference. Michal Szpak looked great in his David Bowie sweater. We even got to ask him a question, which was such a sad excuse for trying to get ourselves on tv. But he told us his his soul was red and that he also liked Guri’s blue top, which was mostly white. And he said he wanted to touch us in the semi final, which is more than we ever dared to hope for.
Finally. It’s the one time of year when we get to focus on the most important thing in our life: Who is the best-looking bloke in Eurovision?
The jury had a hard time this year. There were a lot of great applications, and many argued their case well, which once again reminded us what a great year 2016 is for fabulousness. In the end we just had to share a bottle of pinot and get down to business. The jury has taken the following criteria into consideration: looks, charm, style, shaggability, social skills, likelihood of showing up in Euroclub and the ability to wear clothes while being surrounded by highly dangerous animals. Other than that, we have followed the strict EBU guidelines, of course, allowing gay flags, but not at all relating to any kind of politics. Everybody knows those politicians are boring anyway.
In Norway we’re still holding our breath and crossing our fingers for Agnete to actually show up in Stockholm, but otherwise it seems like the preparations before the rehearsals kick off in Globen are running along smoothly. A sneak peak of how the stage will look like tells us that we’re about to get reacquainted with the good old television test signal, which will give a nice retro touch to the competition. Well done, SVT!
Here’s a sentence we never thought we’d say: We think the Dutch artist is highly underrated this year. So far at least.
It’s not like we approve of those Dutchmen very often in Eurovision, but this year’s artist is different. Being only 23 years old, Douwe Bob already seems well established. He was voted the best singer-songwriter in The Netherlands in 2012, and he has released two records after that, which are both very worth listening to – something we also rarely say in this website. While the first one, Born in a Storm, has a happy folk feel to it in a Ryan Adams and Mumford & Sons kind of way, last year’s Pass it On flirts a tiny bit more with blues and rock in a retro way, which is not a bad idea at all.
So, in true Norwegian style we did not show up in Amsterdam. We were really sad to not experience all the fabulousness that went on in Melkweg, but lucky to have good friends like Schlagerboys and ESCKAZ that shared so perfectly we almost felt like we were there anyway. A big thank you to them and here are our high- and not-so-highlights of the evening:
Most underrated performance by others:
Montenegro. We are seriously impressed that Highway even bothered showing up, knowing the hardcore fans do not exactly favour their music style and can be less than welcoming. But they just have to live with that for a while longer, because with voices like theirs, they are bound to please quite a few voters. And us, which is most important, of course. Also, you have to love a band with two vocalists.
Most surprising performance:
Greta from Iceland, starting off with a beautiful violin solo and following up with a great crowdpleaser of a schlager. Good thing Iceland has a few millions reserved for hosting an international final in a bank account in Panama.
Yay, it is finally time for Eurovision in concert! All hearts be merry. This is the time when artists gather in the city of Amsterdam to show what they are capable of and, more importantly, what they are not capable of in Stockholm in May.
We sadly have to devote our weekend to children’s football and family entertaining, which sounds like worst case of priorities gone bad, but probably awards us a few very needed karma points for when we hop on the speedy train to Stockholm in May to make the best possible use of our newly acquired accreditation. But we’ll be following the Internet from our very smart phones 24-7, of course.
So there are a few interesting facts about this year’s contest. One being that it is chuck full of rockers, another being that there are lots of recycled participants from the alumni club, but the most important is that there is HAIR. LOTS of it, in fact. Had we not known this was a contest somehow related to music, we would have mistaken it for the annual assembly of Europe’s hair models.
And who has shown the best use of hair so far? It seems most of the women had the same blow dry from a random hair dresser on a street in Manhattan, so we’re going to skip a lot of them. We do not see the need for looking like real housewives of New Jersey just because you are singing a song in Stockholm. Let’s focus on the others.
So, something is certainly cooking in The Netherlands. After a series of rather dubious characters jumping the Eurovision stage for not much more than an embarassing spin in the semi finals, life savers The Common Linnets flew directly inn from Nashville a few years ago. That was immediately awarded, and it looks like it opened a few doors for those who care about their music and how they present it.
Enter Douwe Bob. A sharply suited, not so well behaved Dutch hunk, who’s ready to conquer the world with his decent country tune – bourbon bottle and six string in hand. We spoke to him about his rather intriguing aspirations.
– Well, you certainly seem to be huge in Holland. Tell us a bit about your career!
– I’m not sure if I’m that big. I try to be the greatest, of course. I tour a lot around Holland and I’ve had a couple of hits. I think the biggest part I have in the Dutch music scene right now is that me and the band keep somewhat of a 60s and 70s vibe to the songs we write and play. We’re bringing back some good ol’ rock ‘n roll and people seem to dig it.
Sadly you won’t find your favorite Eurovision bloggers reporting live from the press center and from premier VIP seating inside the arena this year. Due to a series of unforeseen circumstances, which we won’t bore you with the details. But we promise to be back on location next year when it’s Italy’s turn to host Eurovision again!