Greece Is The Word

May 10, 2021 by

Greece Is The Word

What has Fokas Evagelinos come up with for Greece and Moldova is one of the burning questions of the day, along with has there been a zombie apocalypse given the lack of people spotted on the way into the press centre?

‘Adrenalina’ starts things off and while Flo Rida is a no-show we have a replacement rapper. Senhit is surrounded by a bizarrely outfitted dance troupe who look like they’ve stolen Max Verstappen’s F1 fireproof balaclavas. String back driving gloves and red riding boots are stylish flourishes to complete a look that says, ‘I’m in control of my vehicle’. Seriously, wtf?

This is a little bit like the San Marino Grand Prix in that they move round Senhit in a tight, repetive circuit. The pit crew then come in with swift hydraulics lifting her up, before the switch to slicks as Joe Cool rapper arrives and they hit the accelerator for some shimmying along the runway, including the odd overtaking manoeuvre.

Uku Suviste is that classic, year-above-in-upper-6th-form dude who has all the women in lower sixth swooning while you’re left playing darts with your mates muttering darkly about the injustice of it all.

Begrudging credit to him here. This is refreshingly clean cut, simple and effective following SM. Vocals on point. It’s inoffensive, safe, middle-of-the-road stuff and Estonia really could do with getting back to the eclectic glory days of Eesi Laul pronto.

Here comes Benny and the Czechs. This is trying to offer some urban cool and he’s a laid-back frontman showcasing a certain degree of swagger but the overall impression is, it’s all too lacklustre. Good to see the satellite stage in operation as Benny and his buds take a stroll there for the song’s climax.

Stefania was spotted in the test pavilion last night draped in a Greek flag. She clearly returned a negative Covid result as here she is, and the reaction in the press centre is overwhelmingly positive with rapturous applause breaking out.

The camera loves her as she gives it a cheeky wink and grin early on in her spangly catsuit. This is from the Lazarev ‘You Are The Only One’ playbook. It’s a similar assault course for her but for 1st rehearsal she navigates the 3 minutes well, the visuals succeed, and there should be more improvements to come.

They’ve aided Vincent Bueno lighting-wise and backing vocal-wise. This presentation is getting the most out of the raw ingredients but he doesn’t have the stage presence to really bring it to life. Plus, the track is too one-dimensional in the chorus.

And to think Poland could have chosen Alicja again this year. This is moving back towards Gromee feat. Lukas Meijer standards, the interaction Rafal attempts with the audience equally limp and encouraging genuine animosity here.

Like the pimp-slotted Danish entry he is trying to channel a fun 80s disco spirit but when he took his shades off, the only interesting thought that came to mind was Rafal’s uncanny resemblance to Charlie Brooker. It’s doubtful Rafal’s The Ride is one many people will want to go on.

‘Sugar’ is pretty much as seen previously in the lead up to ESC 2021. Had been expecting a few more staging gimmicks and fireworks here. Natalia Gordienko is on the rotating platform used earlier by San Marino but by Moldovan standards this is surprisingly sedate. The big note she ends on is staggering to behold given her lips barely move in a Shari Lewis moment of ventriloquy.

Many in the fan community believe ‘Think About Things’ would have won the ESC that wasn’t last year. Not so sure about that but the good will built up has helped seduce the fans once more with Iceland backed down to 10 following the 1st rehearsal of ’10 Years’.

It has charm in a school band performing during rag week way but the visuals, including an Ovi ‘Miracle’ moment, send this perilously close to the novelty sphere. Once again the market seems to have forgotten there is a jury element at ESC.

Hurricane for Serbia earn warm applause here and this Balkan banger certainly has impact. One for the dads, for sure, but Stefania wins the day in the uptempo female stakes. Let’s guess the press poll – 1. Iceland 2. Greece 3. Serbia.

That’s stumps on day 3. Tomorrow promises to be a big one shifting the front of the market again with a first sighting of Bulgaria and Switzerland.


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