Last year’s hosting nation Azerbaijan missed out on taking the show back to Baku, placing second with power ballad Hold Me. It featured what seemed to be a slightly confusing love triangle involving singer Farid Mammadov, a lady in red, and a man in a perspex box.
Romania divided opinion with Cezar and the Eurodance/opera fusion number It’s My Life. The counter-tenor’s high pitched vocal stylings and strange vampiresque staging certainly made the song stand out, so if you’re going to YouTube to look for bizarre entries from this year’s crop, this is the one.
Attention grabbing didn’t bring a win for Finland either, whose Marry Me (performed by Krista Siegfrids) had seemed destined for greater things. The Katy Perry-esque performance featured Krista in her wedding dress, a chorus with a ‘ding-dong’ refrain (surely always a good thing at Eurovision?) and a kiss with a female backing singer. Unfortunately the highly infectious pop track stalled in third from last place.
Noughties dance giants Cascada failed to light up the scoreboard for Germany with Glorious while Ireland’s Ryan Dolan bafflingly finished last with a strong slice of Euro-pop, Only Love Survives.
The United Kingdom’s Believe in Me, performed by eighties soft rock queen Bonnie Tyler, hovered worrying close to the very bottom of the scoreboard at times but thankfully pulled itself to 19th place. It’s hardly a return to those heady days of Bucks Fizz and Katrina and the Waves but there is hope. After last year’s second from last position we’re at least heading in the right direction!
Words: Russell Iliffe, PRS for Music