Wednesday, 24 April 2013

My top 10 for Eurovision Song Contest 2013 – Malmö

I’m no expert when it comes to music and all I do is determining whether I like a song or not and I don’t even have the skills to identify a song’s genre but most of those songs which I happen to like are categorised under pop. Moreover, I've never even been a bathroom singer nor have I ever wielded a musical instrument.  I’ve never bothered about the language of a song and in fact, prefer songs of a language which I don’t speak and even in case of English songs, I’ve never bothered too much about the lyrics. 

This happens to be the fourth Eurovision Song Contest I’m following and despite the fact that I’ve no power to influence the contest in any way whatsoever since I live in a place miles away, even from the nearest eligible country, which I guess is Lebanon. But I’ve still had the interest in the competition, owing to such enthusiastic performances and also, most songs sung in this contest happen to suit my interests

A blog post may not be the best way to put up a top 10 list, especially when this is a not a music blog (nor shall it ever be) but I don’t happen to have the ‘technical know-how’ to personally compile a video with excerpts from each song. The list has got nothing to with public opinion or trends, it is solely based on my liking and nobody shall dictate which song I should like and which one I shouldn’t.

So, here it begins: -

10. Greece – Alcohol is Free by Koza Mostra feat. Agathon Iakovidis

The pace, at which the song goes, is not usually something that represents my liking but for the strangest of reasons, I liked it. Their voice, their attire in particular and by the way they go about it, I guess the song’s lyrics are funny. I felt it deserved a mention, and hence, I gave it the last slot in my list.

09. Malta – Tomorrow by Gianluca Bezzina

I liked the voice of Bezzina, sounded like some young boy singing. Was one of my initial favourites but as more and more countries declared their songs, they just happened to gazump the Maltese entry.

08. Slovenia – Straight into Love by Hannah Mancini

Sung by the ‘American girl popular in Slovenia’, which happens to be what Mancini says about herself, has created a standard pop song with her team. Good song, which immediately got into my ‘Best in the Library’ playlist.

07. Sweden – You by Robin Stjernberg

The hosts, the incumbent, many tip Sweden to win the contest again but I think this is the proper place for the song in my list. When I first heard it, I didn’t particularly like it, but this song went the opposite way, in comparison with the Maltese entry, gradually rising up the ranks in my list. Certainly not my choice for a victory but is an excellent song and if I give it some more time, it might well go into till the fourth rank in my list.

06. Austria – Shine by Natália Kelly

Loved the song, when I first heard it, I thought that this was going to be my favourite in the contest but, unfortunately, there are better entries.

05. Denmark – Only Teardrops by Emmelie de Forest

I wanted Denmark to finish in the top three in the last two years, that is, the songs New Tomorrow by A Friend in London in 2011 and Should’ve Known Better by Soluna Samay for 2012. But I don’t think neither of them even came close but this time, public opinion seems to be strongly in favour of de Forest, especially when she is performing at Malmo, which is effectively a home advantage considering Copenhagen being the nearest big city. Moreover, even the Nordic voting bloc might be in her favour.

The song was good, I especially loved the flute (or however THAT particular instrument is known as) but the live performance should be a little better.

04. United Kingdom – Believe in me by Bonnie Tyler

UK grabs the fourth position. When I came to know that Tyler was going to be the representative and considering her age, I thought it was going to be yet another horror of a performance, like Humperdinck’s performance at Baku. But, this was more suited for the present day, and I’m surprised that she has maintained her voice even at 60+. Great song!

03. Azerbaijan – Hold me by Farid Mammadov

Another brilliant entry from Azerbaijan! A wonderful ballad and though, is not very highly rated video in Youtube’s various ranking videos, but I often contemplated giving it the first spot in my list. Can Azerbaijan have their second win in three years?

02. Russia – What if by Dina Garipova

Russia finished second last year with Buranovskiye Babushki’s Part for Everybody but I was disappointed with that song. Didn’t suit my interests at all, but this one from Dina is appropriately soft, slow and although I’ve never bothered about it much, I liked the lyrics of the song – going with the motto of this year’s contest, We Are One.

01. Iceland - Ég á líf by Eyþór Ingi Gunnlaugsson

My favourite, by a significant distance from Dina’s What If. When I first looked Eyþór Ingi Gunnlaugsson’s picture, his hairstyle indicated that he was another one of those Nordic cacophonic heavy metal musicians but his song turned out to be a pleasant surprise – soft and melodious. Incidentally, this happens to be my only other foreign language song in the list, other than that of Greece, which is quite unusual.

I’ve missed out on three highly rated songs, that is German, Norwegian and Dutch entry but I consciously left them out as I didn’t like any of them much, and at most, Germany could’ve made it into my top 15 list. But as always, my ratings are always a way off from the reality: 2010, my favourite entry was Slovakia’s Horehronie sung by Kristina Peláková but it didn’t even qualify for the final; the next year, 2011, at Dusseldorf was a little better, with my favourite entry, Paradise Oskar’s Da Da Dam representing Finland coming at least to the final, but was ranked beyond 20; and 2012 wasn’t any different, with Hungary’s representative, Compact Disco whose song Sound of Our Hearts also ending up with a rank beyond 20 and I believe even Iceland would only suffer the same fate.

Looking forward to the event, and luckily, it is one day after my exams get over!

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