RogerBW's Blog

Eurovision 2022 17 May 2022

Still not really "my" sort of music, and nor should it be, but I enjoyed several of these…

Here is the playlist for the final. As usual I know nothing about earlier rounds or background for the acts; I'm just going by my own impression of each song as an audiovisual spectacle.

My biases: low-pitched voices, female singers, lush audio texture with harmonies rather than just solo voices, uptempo with a bit of energy to it, a show that combines the light effects with practical on-stage stuff and avoids just appealing to the dirty old man part of the audience.

  • Czech Republic: musically a bit simple for my taste, though the video work with the statues is pleasing. A lot of tech that doesn't seem to include autotune; the singer's pitch gets distinctly wonky in places.

  • Romania: yes, we get it, you're sexy. And? People have been sexy before, and sung.

  • Portugal: what is it with this makeup (Czech Rep too) that makes you look as if you've just got out of the pool? Also, that voice really doesn't work for me. With a more interesting song they could maybe carry it.

  • Finland: finally a song with a bit of meat to it, but not much video excitement. Yellow and black, OK.

  • Switzerland: has nothing to say to me – though I'd love to hear this guy singing something a bit more interesting. (OK, so I'm rarely convinced by young men who look as if the hardest decisions they've ever had to make are which hair product to use today singing about emotional pain.)

  • France: solid video show, and a song with a bit of energy to it. Costuming is nothing special but I'll forgive it for the rest. MOAR FIRE.

  • Norway: how can a costume theme be gimmicky and dull at the same time? Uptempo but doesn't seem to go anywhere.

  • Armenia: not sure I get the point of the fake guitar strumming, but this more or less worked for me even with minimal effects. (Which presumably wouldn't have been visible live…)

  • Italy: the home crowd knows the song, but eh. Good to see the guys not afraid to go a bit gaudy.

  • Spain: only Spain could do that intro, and I'm glad they did. The song's a bit basic but it grew on me. Costuming on the women is rather blatant, but the sparkfall is well done.

  • Netherlands: what was I saying about lush audio texture? It gets better, but not hugely. The "bare and stark" staging style doesn't work well for me here – I mean, at a concert, sure, but this is Eurovision and you've got all this expensive kit to play with. I think that may be why I'm looking for more than one singer with a little backing, too; there are contexts in which I'd be happy to listen to that, but not this one.

  • Ukraine: was obviously going to win the popular vote. But my goodness we get harmony! If only some of the time. A sense of fun in the costuming helps, even if they don't do much with the video. I don't love it but it gets the job done.

  • Germany: suffers by contrast, but again, just that thin solo voice with minimal backing, minimal show, just has nothing to say to me beyond the words.

  • Lithuania: very traditional nightclub-singer sort of costume and staging, and I like her voice; could have done with more backing, but if you're going to do this style, here's apparently how to make it appeal to me.

  • Azerbaijan: falls foul of my bias against high-voiced men. And what was the point of all that stage construction?

  • Belgium: see above, without the stage construction.

  • Greece: decent voice once she gets past the intro, but there's nothing about this that says "Greece" or anything else.

  • Iceland: if you're not going to get wholeheartedly into the rock thing, this sort of country is Just Fine with me.

  • Moldova: Yes! Yes yes yes! This is what a Eurovision song should be.

  • Sweden: another bare stage, bare song, meh, but when the backing comes in it doesn't improve. Stick a four-piece behind her rather than the synthistrings and give it some energy and I might enjoy it.

  • Australia: Love the look! Not so much the song.

  • United Kingdom: well at least it's not a generic pretty white boy as usual. Arrangement works. The song itself grew on me. But he can't quite hit that high note.

  • Poland: give this lad a decent song! Good staging, OK arrangement, lovely voice, naff-all songwriting.

  • Serbia: a bit of energy, not the greatest song but well arranged. Basically I want to lock this team in a room with Poland and a good songwriter.

  • Estonia: guitarist-singer is hard to do well; pity he doesn't keep it up. More country influence, but perhaps a bit too blatant (especially with those great rolling American deserts in the background). Solid voice.

My top five:

  1. Moldova
  2. France
  3. Iceland
  4. Lithuania
  5. Spain

There's nothing here that I expect to find myself humming next week.

Tags: music

  1. Posted by DrBob at 04:08pm on 19 May 2022

    Norway... yeah, yeah, we've seen the Minions movies too.

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