Eurovision 2018’s best entries
The biggest show in the world? That’s Eurovision!
The Eurovision Song Contest will engulf our hearts and minds for one night only in May, when the 23 competing countries and their songs will take to the stage in Lisbon, Portugal.
The competition has discovered some incredibly iconic acts, which include names you might even have heard of: Celine Dion and ABBA, and more recently drag queen Conchita Wurst all began their careers at Eurovision.
Entertainment’s biggest night sees all competing countries sing one song live in an arena somewhere in Europe – this time around it’s Lisbon’s turn to host.
The contest is broadcast live so you have the chance to vote for any of the final 23 countries which make it to the Grand Final.
Britain has a terrible track record at Eurovision since the Millennium but we’re in the ‘Grand Final,’ which will be broadcast on the BBC on May 12.
In 2003, 2008 and 2010 Britain finished last (!) and in 2016 Britain failed to make the top 10 for the seventh year in a row.
However, bizarrely our historical record with the competition is good – we have won five times, in 1967, 1969, 1976, 1981 and 1997.
But how does this year’s British Eurovision act fare?
Representing Britain: SuRie
Singer-songwriter SuRie’s entry can be read either personally or politically, as an anthem which insists “storms don’t last forever.”
SuRie’s entry is a straightforward pop classic which builds into a giant anthemic chorus, check it out below.
Representing Ireland: Ryan O’Shaughnessy
Ireland’s entry has a video featuring a same-sex couple and Russia controversially threatened not to air it recently.
Russia were told their entry faced being removed from the competition if they went through with not airing it, as the Eurovision Song Contest has always stood for diversity.
Representing the Czech Republic: Mikolas Josef
This song is getting attention for it punchy, edgier feel which is a million miles from the more predictable ballads.
Mikolas veers between singing and rapping in English and the video features a number of kitsch special effects… Check it out.
Representing Israel: Netta
Israel’s entry Netta is laced with attitude. She uses vocal tricks aplenty, distancing herself from the smooth vocals of other countries.
The song is a feminist anthem which declares: “I’m not your toy, you stupid boy!”
Representing Finland: Saara Aalto
Saara is widely rumoured to win Eurovision 2018, which is mostly down to her profile – she has a huge fanbase at home in Finland and also in the UK following her X Factor stint.
Saara told PinkNews in a recent interview that Eurovision track Monsters is about “living life as you want, finding your strength, being brave as who you are and not being afraid to show it.”
Representing France: Madame Monsieur
Could you get a more French name than ‘Madame Monsieur’?
France’s entry is a vocally rich and sophisticated slow-burner.
Representing Germany: Michael Schulte
Germany’s entry is a slow ballad sung in English.
Michael Schulte’s video is stripped-back and raw without such an obvious positive message. At the end, he declares: “You let me walk this world, alone.”
Representing Italy: Ermal Meta and Fabrizio Moro
Italy’s duet feels more politically-driven, and the singing has a fast-paced urgency.
We can imagine this one being a grower that niggles away in your mind long after the competition.
Representing Spain: Amaia y Alfred
Spain’s Eurovision entry has a soulful feel, and a romantic vibe.
Basically a love song, the video features a straight couple embracing in a variety of different locations – cutesy af.
Representing Australia: Jessica Mauboy
We know what you’re thinking: Australia’s not in Europe. Yep – but Australia somehow wangled their way in.
The country has been competing since 2015 and this year their message is: “Don’t give up, cause we got love!”
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Belgium’s entry feels spookier and more self-referential, with seductive lyrics and a Bond-esque pace.
It’s catchy and lingers in the mind…
Watch Eurovision live on the BBC on May 12