Eurovision 2022

So, the contest is over, the glitter canons detritus has been swept up, and Turin returns to whatever passes for normality there.

How was it for me, I’m sure you are all asking!

I’d had a good oul listen to all the songs beforehand, and made a list of ones I thought would do well, and those I didn’t rate. How did my list compare to the actual final scoreboard?

1st: Ukraine. No surprises whatsoever, and I had them top of my leaderboard too. I think the song is great, has a combination of folky flute hook, as well as a heartfelt message. Oh and I did also enjoy the crumping break dancing that accompanied it. The combination of jury plus televotes will always throw up some controversial winners – I hadn’t rated Italy at all last year, and was behind the jury darlings of Voila and Tous l’univers……but the televote overturned their lead.

2nd UK. Delighted with this result for Sam Ryder, who seems like a genuinely nice bloke, and who worked his socks off promoting Spaceman across Europe in the lead up to the contest. I had him 3rd, and even I was overwhelmed by the love he was getting from juries and televoters alike. I mean, politics, sure, but it just goes to show that a good song, performed well, will get points.

3rd Spain. There was a lot of hype about this SloMo, and it’s a decent enough uptempo number, but the “booty hypnotic” lyrics and the scantily clad costumes were a big turn off for me. I hadn’t them on my list at all.

4th Sweden. The lyrics of “Hold Me Closer” are just heartbreaking, (I found the right one at the wrong time) and delivered with a gravelly voice that melts your heart. Great effort from the Swedes, who were disappointed that this didn’t make the top 3, it was my 6th place.

5th Serbia. Biggest shock of the night to me was the high placing this Goth spa treatment song about Meghan Markle’s shiny hair got. I was amazed it even made it through the semis!

6th Italy. Another much hyped entry, Brividi was a soulful all male duet, by two well known singers. But the performance on the night was rather lack lustre. I had it 9th

7th Moldova. Chisinau to Bucharest! Of the bonkers party songs, this was my favourite, it’s a cheery colourful number featuring fiddles and accordions, and I placed it 5th. Here’s an aide memoire to assist you in naming the capital: Moldova – mulled wine – wine and cheese – Chisinau! You’re welcome.

8th Greece. There were a lot of doom and gloom ballads this year, and Die Together was staged with a whole load of broken chairs, and the singer wore a costume made out of that cellophane your wrap flowers in, so it had a wistful post-apocalyptic quality to it. It was 11th on my list.

9th Portugal. Very soft and low key, tie dye outfits and pigtails, Saudade describe a feeling of missing a place. I didn’t rate this at all

10th Norway. “Not sure you have a name so I will call you Keith”, the yellow suited performers singing about preventing a wolf from eating your Grandma by offering a banana instead. This had a massive support pre concert, but was never going to get a lot of jury points. I had it on my “like” list, but not placed.

11th Netherlands. A very soulful song in Dutch “oooh hoooo, ahaaaaa”, delivered with great sincerity and emotion, from a young woman with very shiny hair (has she been for a Goth spa treatment?). I really liked this one and placed it 4th

12th Poland. Of the doom power ballads from strong male soloists, this was my favourite, and I put it in 2nd place. His voice brought me out in goosebumps, though the staging was perhaps overly busy for a ballad.

13th Estonia. I hope, I hope, I hope went this up beat C&W influenced number, which rounded off the performances on the night in suitable fashion. Was just outside my top ten, but one that I’m sure I will play often.

14th Lithuania. Sparkly long dress and pudding bowl haircut, I found this one dreary and didn’t expect it to even qualify!

15th Australia. Chain mail face mask and very elaborate white costume for this deep and meaningful ballad. Australia haven’t fared well in recent years, and must be asking themselves some Serious Questions. Didn’t make my shortlist.

16th Azerbaijan. My son and I play a game of “spot the Bond theme song” each Euroviz, and this was the 2022 winner. I didn’t expect it to qualify, and it suffered from being so similar to the other male sung power doom ballads.

17th Switzerland. Marius Bear with….yet another male performer doing a doom and gloom ballad. I had as a non-qualifier.

18th Roumania. Llamame bebebe, call me baby, a Latin dancey number, with a bit of cha-cha thrown into the performance. 12th on my list.

19th Belgium. Am I gonna miss you, Naaaaaaah! Strong delivery but rather a slow tempo, it was just outside my top 12.

20th Armenia. Snap it 1,2, where are you? I found this reminiscent of “I belong to you, you belong to me you’re my sweetheart”. The styling was a bit bland and beige, indeed there was a costume alteration between the semis and the final, though it still would be in with a good chance of winning the Barbara Dex award for worst outfit. I had this as my 8th.

21st Finland. The actual Rasmus! I went to see them live back in my Luxembourg days, when they were riding high in the charts with In The Shadows. They benefitted from being the only really rock number in the final line up, and their spooky yellow raincoats and IT balloon made them at least memorable. Just outside my placed songs, but I was really pleased they did so well.

22nd Czechia. Lights Off by Domi, almost a rave quality to it. “Where are you now?”, this will definitely be played a lot on my Spotify, and I had placed it 7th.

23rd Iceland. The sister group…errr…Systur…didnt feature at all on my list, I found it dreary and dull. I’m sure someone must have shouted out “Play jah jah ding dong!”

24th France. I just didn’t get this one at all, and it hasn’t stayed in my memory. Must try harder.

25th Germany. Oh dear, 2 of the Big 5 in the bottom places, they must be casting envious glances across the channel to the UK, and wondering what they need to do next.

The other songs that I thought would do well, but which didn’t make it out of the semis were Malta “I am What I am”, Israel I.M, and Austria’s Halo. I also felt for Brooke Scullion, from down the road in Bellaghy, who gave a fabulous performance on the night, with good staging, costume and dancing, which got a great audience reaction in the auditorium. But it wasn’t enough to save a poor song, and added to Ireland’s poor performance record in recent years.

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