Also in this week’s newsletter, Sweden complete the lineup for this Saturday’s Melodifestivalen grand final, tickets for this year’s Eurovision shows finally go on sale, and Ukraine make an unfortunate exit from the competition.
ESC Insight National Selection Playlist: Runners Up Special
The runner-up in Georgia’s national selection, this elegantly haunting ballad probably wasn’t any more accessible to a broader European audience than the song that won, but with its sweeping orchestration and mournful delivery, it would have been a fine addition to Georgia’s impressively diverse Eurovision catalogue.
Moldovan stage star Maxim Zavidia stormed the televote at O melodie pentru Europa on Saturday night, but low marks from the Jury left him stranded in second place behind Anna Odobescu. A rousing aspirational power-ballad that also incorporates some tribal elements, the cheese factor is high with this one – but Moldova have an enviable track record when it comes to turning Gouda into Gold.
Speaking of gouda, Norway took a big gamble on Saturday night by pinning their hopes on the bonkers bubblegum confection that is ‘Spirit In The Sky‘ by KEiinO. Runner-up Adrian probably would have been a safer pair of hands with this professional, radio-ready Ed Sheeran-esque ballad. Frankly, we think they made the much more entertaining decision, but if all that Joiking sets your teeth on edge, this should prove much more palatable.
Conan Osiris may have romped to a commanding victory at Festival da Canção on Saturday night, but his arthouse electro stylings are bound to prove sharply divisive. This soulful number finished in the runners up slot and, like Norway, probably would have been a safer, if rather less exciting choice from last year’s hosts.
As one of the biggest names in Serbia’s national selection this year, Dženan Lončarević could probably have been forgiven for assuming he had the ticket to Tel Aviv in the bag. Alas, it was not to be for this theatrical Balkan ballad, but the onstage knitwear antics will live on in our memories even if the song doesn’t.