The songs are in and it’s clear that semi final one is going to be tough. Eurovision 2016 has some strong entries and semi final one will send a lot of great performances to non qualifier status. I’m not looking for to this and I very well might shed a tear that night.
With that said, someone has to win! With this bunch picking a winner will be tough, but I’ve managed to come up with my five favorites. In no particular order:
Iveta Mukuchyan is bringing a “LoveWave” to Stockholm, Sweden and I’m riding high on this entry. The song is a risk, but reminds me a little of Latvia’s “Love Injected” from last year. The song is part art, part electro-pop, with a dash of rock and roll. ESC 2016 needed this entry and I’m glad Armenia is serving it to us.
Minus One is a cover band that is bring pop-rock magic to Stockholm with “Alter Ego“. This song is good. This is how you create a rock song that traditional pop fans can digest while not alienating rock purists. Minus One invested in a music video that gives me hope for their on-stage performance at the Globe. Cyprus has never won the song contest and this year they have a fighting chance.
Greta Salome is channelling fellow Icelanders Of Monsters and Men with “Hear Them Calling“. This indie-pop track has indie cred and radio-friendly energy with an on-stage performance that could take our breath away. Iceland would be a worthy Eurovision host and they kinda deserve a chance to fight for top honors. I’m already looking at flights to Reykjavík for Eurovision May 2017.
Douwe Bob isn’t going to let me down. “Slow Down” is channeling a young Johnny Cash and with an understated presentation this song could be a nice contrast to the evening. The song has depth without smacking us in the face with a message. The song just feels good and after being robbed last year I expect to see them in the finals. The juries can get behind this entry.
Sergey Lazarev is trying to bring this home for Russia with “You’re the Only One” and he might just do it. Russia has managed to make a song that feels both nostalgic and modern at the same time. Sergey’s vocals are crisp with Russia’s signature lilt. The on-stage performance is guaranteed to wow and I’m excited to see this live. Lazarev’s professionalism will shine through on-stage and no matter what your political opinion of Russia is, you’ll be singing along. It’s just good.