Today in Parliament – The Eurovision edition – Day 4

TODAY IN PARLIAMENT Eurovision 2024

Hej hej! It’s been another day of events in the Big Eurovision house, and I’m here once again to point out things that you already worked out for yourselves several hours ago. It’s only because of the unique way that OnEurope is funded (spoiler – it isn’t) that we can do this.

Latvia

I suspect – with no real evidence to back this up – that Europe is sleeping on this a little bit. There’s always room for a classically structured male ballad, and I’m a sucker for one that builds and builds and then sheds all the layers to get back down to nothing to finish. Dons clearly not having got the memo about sleeves adds some defined visual interest to the performance.

Equally however, I was badly burned in 2004 by Jonsi displaying powerful emotion and biceps, and that wasn’t the last time it happened. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me 932 times shame on me etc etc.

I’ll perhaps keep this back for the “Name a Eurovision song that only you appreciate” meme when it wheels back round and I want a change from Lotta Engberg. But I’ll cross my fingers for a pleasant surprise next Thursday when the qualifiers get called.

@eurovision

On his first rehearsal for Latvia, @Dons delivers a vocal that is set to silence Malmö Arena 🇱🇻 #Eurovision2024

♬ original sound – Eurovision

San Marino

Megara got the memo about sleeves. Draw a line between the Sex Pistols and the Banana Splits and the look is definitely somewhere on that line.

It’s all very enthusiastic, in a “We 100% definitely submitted this to Benidormfest and it didn’t make the cut, it’s certainly not pretending not to be Spanish” kind of way (unless it actually did make the cut, because I didn’t pay it close attention and San Marino finds its stuff in all manner of odd places these days). It’s probably enthusiastic enough to come back on Saturday, if I’m honest, but probably not enthusiastic enough to do better than Say Na Na Na.

@eurovision

Punk, pyro and a hell of a lot of pink! @MEGARA have touched down in Malmö 🇸🇲 #Eurovision2024

♬ original sound – Eurovision

Georgia

A book We’re Going To Burn The Stage But Then We’re Going To Put Out The Fire accompanying the series Georgia At Eurovision is available from all good booksellers, or by sending a cheque for 35p and a sealed envelope to Yorkshire Television.

This is better (and, frankly, saner) than most of Georgia’s recent efforts, but it might have steered too close to the safe side of things. There are at least ten countries that this could plausibly represent, and I’m almost tempted to give it the old “It’s a competent song performed competently by a competent singer”. It’s perfectly alright, but it doesn’t stand out.

@eurovision

A piping-hot performance, but nothing our resident Firefighter @Nutsabuza can’t handle 🇬🇪 #Eurovision2024

♬ original sound – Eurovision

Belgium

A senior member of the OnEurope team saw this TikTok and immediately placed a total of £10 British Euros Sterling on Belgium to win or come in the top four.

Reader, I was not that member. It’s a moderately original structure in the same way that Mustii’s jacket has moderately original sleeves, it takes too long to get going and once it’s reached its zenith it stays there too long. OK, it’s not their fault that they aspire to start a fire literally a minute and a half after Nutsa’s pointedly put one out (Kudos, producers!), but it’s not on my shortlist.

A senior member of the OnEurope team will no doubt now guffaw heartily at me in British Euros Sterling a week on Saturday.

@eurovision

Belgium has had its first rehearsal and it’s a multiple mic-drop from @Mustii 🇧🇪 #Eurovision2024

♬ original sound – Eurovision

Estonia

I absolutely don’t mind a bonkers Estonian. I was Kreisiraadio’s staunchest defender back in 2008 and I still think that was an underrated slab of fun.

I’m not really finding the fun with this one – or at least, not enough fun. As a musical “substance experience” I’d rank it alongside sitting next to a washing machine on rinse cycle after forgetting to take my blood pressure pills.

Still, they’re charging around the stage enjoying themselves like a latter-day LT United, and I hope that it has people out there who’ll pop up in 16 years time to say they were its staunchest defenders.

It’s not for me. It might be for you.

@eurovision

UuuuyEEEE! The @5MIINUST x @Puuluup party has arrived at first rehearsals in Malmö 🇪🇪 #Eurovision2024

♬ original sound – Eurovision

Israel

Right, deep breath. The price of not boycotting is navigating this bit and working out what the heck I’m supposed to say at this point. I’ve been thinking about it for months and still don’t know.

Truth be told, I’m rendered absolutely unable to judge this on its musical merits. I don’t think anybody from any standpoint is going to be judging it on its musical merits. So I’ll just leave it that my very first reaction when it was released was “Hmm, that is actually quite good” and sort of hope that sitting on the fence works out.

I’m very experienced at sitting on fences when called upon to, and will be drawing on all that experience over the next couple of weeks.

@eurovision

@EDEN GOLAN has had her very first run-through of Hurricane as rehearsals continue in Malmö 🇮🇱 #Eurovision2024

♬ original sound – Eurovision

 

Norway

At 7:48pm UK time on 20 January 2024, I tweeted the following sentence:

That was a pile of absolutely nothing, but a very dramatic, intense and folkloric pile of absolutely nothing.

I mostly stand by that initial assessment. I’ve been on the lookout for a bit of authentic Viking drama from Norway for a few years now, and now it’s come it left me a little cold. To be fair Norway always leaves me a little cold, it even snowed on me in 1996.

It’s so nearly there. Seeing the translated lyrics helped, the fact that I think the last actual word is sung when there’s still over a minute of primal howling and general Extreme Drama to go didn’t help.

I fully understand why some people think they’re looking at the winner here. I also understand why the wider consensus is that we’re not.

@eurovision

Fireflies, guitar throwing, a spinning rock platform… Malmö is living for @GÅTE dark woodscape 🇳🇴 #Eurovision2024

♬ original sound – Eurovision

Netherlands, The

When Joost was announced as the Dutch singer last year, I took one look at the publicity photo and declared “I hate him already”.

Making an immediate impact is a good thing at Eurovision, sometimes. And I’m absolutely delighted that our friends in Netherlands, The seem to have found something approaching a new national anthem in Europapa. I have nothing but praise for anyone who can get their whole country behind them in this contest the way Joost has.

We’re talking about a song with winner chances. And unfortunately that means we have to nitpick. We have to talk about the things that might scupper it and neglect to focus on the reasons why it’s in contention.

The thing that might scupper it is obvious. It’s at heart a very simple song, it’s practically a nursery rhyme. The international juries aren’t prone to rewarding simplicity.

If they spot that there’s a real emotional core hiding underneath the gauche simplicity though, then it’s game on.

Also, sleeves.

@eurovision

Welkom in Europa! @joost is bringing it all together in rehearsals 🇳🇱 #Eurovision2024

♬ original sound – Eurovision

Right, and breathe. That was an interesting day around the courts with lots going on. I’ve certainly spotted a few winner contenders over the last few days, but I can’t pretend for a second that I know where we’ll all be heading for next May yet and I’ve still got another six left to study. It could well be an exciting scoreboard a week on Saturday!

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Shai
Shai
27 days ago

Nick,

Your 1st reaction to Israel is worth gold.
It’s a reaction a song, any song,should evoke on 1st listen.

Whether viewers will know the back story or not, is yet to be seen.
Jurries, however, are a different story.

Keep those daily summeries coming, they are priceless.