Star Quality

May 7, 2016 by

Star Quality

Germany, Italy and the UK will be the last 3 of the 42 to be seen for the first time today.

Jamie Lee is in her German NF manga garb and the staging is very similar to what we saw there. Four backing vocalists manage to drag this down. Jamie sings this well enough; she just strikes an odd image and the song, while radio-friendly, plods along. ‘Like a dragon to his gold’. Peculiar drop in her timbre for this line.

Moon behind her, barren trees either side as she walks to the front of the stage. Oh dear. I’m wiping my tears with the £20 notes invested on Germany for top 10 here. May as well set light to them now. Well done layers.

Image of a tree behind Francesca at start. Nice close ups of her. She gives good camera. Vocal good. Various ornaments hang off individual stands across the stage – balloon, umbrella, seagull, bunches of flowers… Super-imposed white hearts and other white graphics shower the screen at various points.

They haven’t made this the classy Italian affair that was expected but it is certainly memorable. She clasps a seedling at song finish. This has USP in a positive way, unlike Germany.

Really like the UK staging. Selfie wall of images behind the lads and on the stage floor. They have two drummers flanking them raised on platforms behind. This has a certain authenticity in the sense of two young guys having the time of their lives up there, interacting well, giving good camera. Pyros on final run through.

This feels refreshing and they are sounding about as good as this has ever sounded. Hope they can produce a performance like this in front of the juries. If they do, UK might surprise but Joe & Jake really need to pull out a second half draw.

Not much to say about Latvia. Justs trys to emote, vocal excellent, but it still lacks impact and comes across as too forced especially in the last minute.

Michal has opted for a velvet jacket which looks much better. The words of the song are super-imposed at the back of the stage. This is dated whereas Latvia is contemporary but neither are quite hitting the target.

Rykka has straightened her hair but not straightened out her vocals. A shame as this is a perfectly acceptable pop song. Pyro curtain at climax.

This is how to do staging: Israel. It really draws you in. Go to the top of the class with Ukraine.

Ivan has some vocal issues. Belarus has gone to a lot of expense with its staging but it is all thrown together in such a haphazard way. Ivan plays the drums at one point, is joined by an animated blue man – think Lawnmower Man – and a baby in a diaper appears beside him at the climax. All very incongruous.

Serbia’s Sanja is in her big match kit – a black pleated leather dress. Compared to her female Balkan rivals this is a wardrobe triumph. Sounding good as always. This is a dark subject matter and you have to think national presenters will explain it to viewers.

Nicky is still exposed on his solo vocal and the lighting just isn’t right for a song called ‘Sunlight’. It’s a fine pop song on first listen but the Irish haven’t got this presentation right. Nice finish with Nicky on the satellite stage.

We know what we will get from Kaliopi. Black and white ball gown for her. All perfectly competent and nicely staged. This year’s Balkan back/lay conundrum.

Lithuania’s Donny, the Ronaldo of ESC 2016, does a forward somersault in this. The stage floor pulses bright lights and Donny forms swirly patterns where he walks. Striking visuals, unlike Ireland. Terrible Flock Of Seagulls hairstyle.

Dami on her glittery box misses a few notes here and there. Certainly not an entirely secure vocal. Her backing singers come in on the chorus so Dami gets to freestyle.

Manuella still closes her eyes when she yodels. The gymnast does his thing on a pole. Pyros at the end. Would have been much better going with a country band (Tim B’s wise suggestion).

Poli gets a bit breathless singing this. Same styling as before. Backing dancers arriving too late still.

One of Lighthouse X remains as flat as a pancake. This is very dated boyband stuff. They end on the satellite stage which is the only time they interact with one another.

Jamala’s vocal sounding very strong on the tv monitor. Staging for this is pitched perfectly. When she goes into her emotive wailing and the tree rises behind her… definitely one of the moments of ESC 2016.

Agnete is still a little flat at the start of this and isn’t note perfect throughout. Icy blue landscape, solo dancer. One to monitor closely during jury rehearsal.

Georgian staging reminds me of the iconic White Stripes video for ‘Seven Nation Army’. Great visuals throughout and a very credible three minutes of indie rock.

Really lovely gold colour scheme for Albania. Eneda in a beautiful gold dress and her vocal is liquid gold too.

Laura, in silver shorts and jacket and her dancers do their best to elevate a dance tune that is emptier than a eunoch’s underpants. And to be fair they do a good job. A shame Poli couldn’t have employed Laura’s dance crew.

Ukraine solidifying as 2nd fav now, Australia on the drift and Sweden, by default, shortening. Tim B will give his views on the second rehearsals of the Big 5 + Sweden tomorrow.

4 Comments

  1. MGR

    Please stop Sweden! This popularity on spotify is not fair! It should be banned! Frans – cheater!

    • eurovicious

      You just left the exact same comment on Sofabet, who is this? It’s not cheating, Sweden’s song went viral (and Spotify is Swedish anyway so has a lot of users there).

  2. Cathal

    I feel if Ireland can get a decent jury score (and by decent I mean 12th or so) I think televote could get him through in like 8th-10th. The staging isn’t the best but I think it’s quite simple and don’t think juries can mark it down in that department as long as his vocal holds up and he finds his camera angles. I think Ireland benefits alot from the new scoring system.

  3. MGR

    Ok, now I’m almost 100% sure that the popularity of Russia, Sweden and France on charts and rankings should affect on results in final of Eurovision Song Contest 14 May 2016 in Stockholm. France and Sweden even will not perform in semi-final, so all votes for these countries will go for their results in final. They have obvious advantage in this situation. That’s why all countries should start from semi-finals.

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