It’s finally that time of year again: Europe’s annual cheese jamboree has descended upon Vienna for a night of questionable music in what is arguably the most important democratic event since the General Election.
This year is the sixtieth edition of the contest, and with Australia competing too, Saturday night could live long in the memory. So, what better time is there to look at the best and worst acts of Eurovision 2015?
All eyes will be on Australia’s contestant Guy Sebastian, as the 33-year old leads the, erm, distinctly not European country to their first Eurovision final. His song, ‘Tonight Again’, contains shades of Bruno Mars and is arguably one of this year’s contest’s best songs, reflected in the fact that Sebastian is seen as one of the favourites to win the contest.
Verdict: Huge tune. Australia could be onto a winner.
Australia aren’t the stand-out favourite though. No: that’s Sweden’s Mans Zelmerlöw, whose Avicii-lite ‘Heroes’ has been combined with an impressive stage show to wow bookies and viewers across Europe. And Australia, of course.
Spectacular vocal performance from Mans. He performs much better every time. We could see Sweden winning tomorrow.
— Eurovoix ()
Verdict: Sweden probably should have just entered Avicii, but this will probably win anyway.
A common complaint about Eurovision is about so-called political voting. Russia seemingly wish to put this theory to the test, having entered their strongest entry since winning in 2008, ‘A Million Voices’ by Polina Gagarina. Oddly enough it’s a ballad about peace, but if people are above political voting, there’s a chance this song will do well. It’s second to Sweden in the bookies’ favourites for a reason.
a millioooooon voices (of dissent that we crush)
— Stephanie Kameric ()
Verdict: Russia turn on the charm. Well done.
‘Beauty Never Lies’ by Bojana Stamenov has been touted as this year’s answer to Conchita Wurst. Starting off as a ballad, Stamenov eventually switches to an up-tempo anthem, and the message of acceptance will win fans. It’s not as good as ‘Rise like a Phoenix’, but it’s not bad either.
Verdict: Well sung but a bit boring.
Somewhere among the favourites are Estonia with their entry ‘Goodbye to Yesterday’ by Elina Born and Stig Rästa (which is an incredible name). There’s a lot to like about this pair of Baltic crooners; the song is elegant, the voices work together, and lyrically it’s interesting. Additionally, Stig looks like Max Beesley of Hotel Babylon fame. What’s not to like?
Mate, you shouldn't have woken her up. She doesn't look happy with you.
— SBS Eurovision (@SBSEurovision)
Verdict: Stig Rästa. What a name!
Israel will likely finish mid-table. This will be an injustice as their entry, ‘Golden Boy’ by Nadav Guedj, is a certified banger, featuring lyrics such as “Before I leave, let me show you Tel Aviv”. It’s almost as if a Middle Eastern, early noughties Justin Timberlake met Ed Sheeran on a lads’ holiday in Magaluf. Nadav’s on to a winner.
If doesn't win Eurovision it is actually a travesty
— Simon Meredith (@SimonMeredith94)
Verdict: Nadav, if you want to have a night out with the Soton Tab, let us know.
It’s safe to say that the United Kingdom aren’t favourites. If a modern music producer went back to the 1920s, armed with a Dr Seuss book for lyrical advice, this is what the result would look like.
Who do you think will win Eurovision 2015? Let us know in the comments!