Eurovision 2015: Rating The Already Qualified Songs

1. Austria: The Makemakes – “I Am Yours”

Rating: 6/10

This song is pretty good for Austria. I know, they just won with an iconic bop, but that was seriously a fluke. Usually they send trash. This song is pretty decent though. It’s nothing special, and will probably tank in the final, but it’s cute.

2. Australia: Guy Sebastian – “Tonight Again”

Rating: 10/10

Guy wrote, produced, mastered, and shot a video for this song in only 3 days. THREE DAYS. The song is seriously amazing and he deserves a Grammy and 1000 virgins in heaven for pulling this off so flawlessly. My only critique would be that the song sounds more like an American radio hit than a Eurovision song. But whatever, it slays. Sydney can host Eurovision 2016 on Bondi beach.

3. France: Lisa Angell – “N’oubliez Pas”
Rating: 2/10

France is sort of a stinker when it comes to Eurovision. I feel like they try, but they just don’t get it anymore. I’m sure this song is super pretty if you happen to be French, but it makes almost no impact and it’s a total snoozefest. Time for a break France?

4. Germany: Ann Sophie – “Black Smoke”

Rating: 4/10

Why do countries with relatively large music industries produce the shittiest Eurovision songs? Okay, I know this wasn’t really supposed to go to Vienna, but whatever, it’s crap anyway. Not into this one.

5. Italy: Il Volo – “Grande Amore”

Rating: 2/10

I know this is super popular with everyone because the twinks in the group are okay looking and they’re the One Direction of Pop/Opera – am I the only one sad that this is a thing? – but I just don’t get it. This song is so incredibly generic. I sort of dig popera but this is even too processed for me.

6. Spain: Edurne – “Amanecer”

Rating: 5/10

So many Eurovision fans are going ape shit over this song, as if it’s the “My Heart Will Go On” of 2015. I don’t get it. The song is basically a copy+paste of last years “Dancing In The Rain.” Way too generic and safe for me. A few tribal drums don’t cover up the lazy production and melodies-for-dummies chapter one hook of the song.

7. United Kingdom: Electro Velvet – “Still In Love With You”

Rating: 1/10

This 2 cent song is a huge mess. I literally hate it. I can’t believe there are people out there who thinks this is anything other than trash. I seriously can’t. Infusing swing with dollar store electro beats from a kit does not make a hit Eurovision song. UK, it’s time you take a few years off. Come back in 2020 after you’ve had a while to think about what a huge flop you are.

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Conchita Wurst Released the Best Album of 2015 (So Far)

Eurovision reigning queen Conchita Wurst has finally released her debut album “Conchita.” For a Eurovision act to release an album in general is quite an achievement, but for one to release a great album, well that is practically super human. Of course we already know Loreen was able to do this, but many others weren’t even able to smash in their home country after the contest ended. I am so thankful that 2014 Austrian winner Conchita was able to easily pull out a collection of iconic bops her first time out the gate.

The album is definitely not what I was expecting in terms of sound. I knew it would feature a bunch of catchy tracks, but I expected a bunch of uplifting ballads about being yourself in the face of opposition. Not that this would have been a bad thing, because recent singles like “Heroes” and the incredible “You Are Unstoppable” were total wig snatchers, but the variety on the album ended up being it’s strongest element.

Sure, there are many ballads on the record, and they’re all pretty damn good. “Pure” is absolutely gorgeous, “Other Side Of Me” is emotional, and Eurovision winning power belter “RIse Like a Phoenix” still remains one of the best ballads in recent history, so she really has that area covered musically.

It’s where Conchita steps out of her comfort zone that the album truly gets interesting. The vaudeville inspired rock number “Where Have All The Good Men Gone” is sort of quirky and humorous. Middle Eastern inspired “Out Of Body Experience” is really sultry, and the sexed up “Somebody To Love” is a lot more risqué than one would expect from the typically elegant pop singer.

Things really get amazing though when Conchita experiments with electronic sounds. The full blown EDM inspired “Colours Of Your Love” is by far the standout on the album, with it’s really shocking heavy beat drop and Middle Eastern infused strings. This is definitely not the song one would expect from Conchita a year ago when she was standing on the Eurovision stage dressed like an elegant Princess. “Firestorm” is a 90’s sound track that is very on trend right now, and electro infused “Up For Air” is an instant classic.

Hopefully we get at least 2 or 3 more singles from this album, as it’s full of great pop songs. Conchita really was the perfect winner for Eurovision, and musically it seems like she is one of the few acts to push farther than the typical fading one-hit-wonder the contest typically produces.’

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Hilary Duff Deserves To Be Sued For Disastrous “Sparks” Video

We all know I worship Hilary Duff. The original Disney Channel multi-platinum chanteuse has released some of the best bubble gum records of all time, and her dance pop record “Dignity” is among many pop fans favorites. 7 years after she released that historic record, she is making a pop music comeback with surprisingly good material. Newest single “Sparks” is a fun electropop banger. It seemed like things were finally starting to go well for Hilary and her musical comeback.

Then the video for the song was released and all hell broke loose – emphasis on BROKE, because she’s obviously out of money if she needs to be hawking products like this in her video. This mess of a video is not only an insult to fans who have been waiting for a big pop moment from Hilord, but also an insult to Hilary herself. The video plays out more like an infomercial for dating app Tinder, where Hilary talks about her experiences going out on endorsed dates with made-for-TV actors local L.A. guys. They film the romantic dates, and we find our couples reading scripts expressing from the heart how great Tinder is and how amazingly fun every date has been. Bowling as never seemed so rom-comtastic!

Sis, we don’t need you to be hawking Home Shopping Network products to us in your music video, especially when you can barely tell there is a song playing in the background. The worst part is that they filmed footage that looks like it could’ve been one of Hilary’s best videos. The strong and colorful K-pop inspired visuals are pretty amazing, and I think everybody can agree that there needs to be a Tinder-less cut of the video pronto.

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Eurovision 2015: Rating All The Songs From Semi-Final 2

1. Lithuania: Monika Linkyte & Vaidas Baumila – “This Time”

Rating: 8/10

I know this song’s chances of qualifying are low, but I really like this song. It’s super catchy and sweet. The guy is hot. The girl is pretty unnecessary, and she adds a little too much cheese to this already cheesy song, but I have been bopping to this for a while now. The solo version featured on Viadas’ album is better though.

2. Ireland: Molly Sterling – Playing With Numbers”

Rating: 3/10

Pretty boring and forgettable. “Break Me Up” should have gone to Eurovision for Ireland, but let me not get into that right now. This song is just a snore.

3. San Marino: Anita Simoncini & Michele Perniola – “Chain Of Light”

Rating: 1/10

My God this song is awful. It should be serving modern European ballad realness, but instead it’s serving 1997 Disney animated direct-to-VHS sequel title song. This isn’t even good Disney.

4. Montenegro: Knez – “Adio”

Rating: 3/10

Honestly this song made zero impact on me. I’ve heard it a few times but fail to remember how it even sounds. Totally in one ear and out the other.

5. Malta: Amber – “Warrior”

Rating: 7/10

Not the best “Warrior” in the contest this year, but it’s not too bad. It’s a bit cheese-tastic, but this is Eurovision. It does the job nicely.

6. Norway: Mørland & Debrah Scarlett – “A Monster Like Me”

Rating: 5/10

I should really love this song, but I don’t. This creepy pop ballad with a haunting chorus should be one of my favorites, but I can’t get into it. I’ve tried, I really  have. There is just something missing from it. It comes off as really safe, despite being pretty dark. A shame, because it had potential.

7. Portugal: Leonor Andrade – “Há Um Mar Que Nos Separa”

Rating: 5/10

This song is both better than I expected and complete awful at the same time. I have never actually liked a Portuguese entry, and this is no exception, but it’s the least awful entry I can remember them sending in recent history. Small victories!

8. Czech Republic: Marta Jandová & Vaclav Noid Barta – “Hope Never Dies”

Rating: 7/10

This is sort of like a better version of that awful Armenian song. It’s a bit Phantom of the Opera-esque – which isn’t a compliment – but it’s pretty easy to listen to. I sort of enjoy this more than I should. I hope this makes it through to the final, though that seems kind of unlikely.

9. Israel: Nadav Guedj – “Golden Boy”

Rating: 10/10

I’ve already reviewed this song, but a refresher course: this song slays. It’s a mess, but in the hottest way. From the self aware lyrics, to the strange beat that mixes urban pop and Middle Eastern instrumentals, it’s a messy masterpiece.

10. Latvia: Aminata – “Love Injected”

Rating: 1/10

I seriously cannot. I know all of the Eurovision fans love this, but I am sorry I can’t stand this song. It sounds like a banshee shrieking out a chorus while a girl 3 rooms away whispers out the verses. The minimalist beat doesn’t help this song either. What is it with crap songs adding in a couple tribal drums and expecting us all to care?

11. Azerbaijan: Elnur Huseynov – “Hour Of The Wolf”

Rating: 6/10

Azerbaijan is one of my favorite countries at ESC, (mainly due to the fact that they send Meldofiestivalen rejects every year), but their debut entry was not very good. Okay, it was plain awful. Well that guy is back again with a much better song. It’s not fantastic, as the chorus is seriously lacking, but whatever. Even Azerbaijan is allowed to send a bomb.

12. Iceland: María Ólafs – “Unbroken”

Rating: 3/10

I love Iceland, and I SHOULD love this song, but it’s actually too annoying to enjoy. I thought I liked it at first, but after a couple listens I realized it’s too cheap and repetitive to like. The Icelandic language version is more tolerable though. The song seriously lacks a hook. It’s basically just a bunch of repeated verses that never form into a chorus. Iceland stay the only Scandi country to never win 2k15.

13. Sweden: Måns Zelmerlöw – “Heroes”

Rating: 10/10

I’ve already reviewed this. Flawless + iconic + winner + when will your faves + ect.

14. Switzerland: Mélanie René – “Time To Shine”

Rating: 7/10

I sort of like this song. The  lyrics are contrived, but the production is pretty nice. Poor Switzerland never does well at Eurovision though.

15. Cyprus: John Karayiannis – “One Thing I Should Have Done”

Rating: 3/10

Ugh, Cyprus. When will you finally have your moment? Poor dears.

16. Slovenia: Maraaya – “Here For You”

Rating: 4/10

This super over-hyped Duffy reject just doesn’t do anything for me. Eurovision is known for being late to the party music trend wise by a year or two, but this “Mercy” wannabe is like 5 years too late.

17. Poland: Monika Kuszynska – “In The Name Of Love”

Rating: 2/10

I seriously loved Poland’s 2014 entry “Slavic Girls,” so it pains me to hear this generic cookie cutter ballad. This is the last thing we needed in a contest full of boring ballads.

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Paris Hilton Changes The Game With “High Off My Love”

We all know that Paris Hilton is the modern reincarnation of Euterpe, the Greek muse of music, so the mere thought of new music from the artistic chanteuse is almost too much to handle. Heavenly Hilton has ascended from the high heavens to bless us unworthy PoS with her peace inspiring melodies and gorgeous vocals. Her debut album “Paris” is still one of my all time favorites, and her last two singles were both iconic, so I knew new single “High Off My Love” featuring Birdman would slay.

The song ended up slaying me harder than I could ever imagine though. It’s an electro trap influenced pop song with a killer hook and a surprisingly modern production. This is honestly the song Britney Spears should have released instead of that piece of garbage she released last week with Iggy Aloser. Queen Hilton needs to hangout with Lady Spears to pass on some much needed inspiration.

I really hope Paris’ album finally gets released, because at this rate it’s shaping up to be as good as her first. When will Adele?

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Elsie, Bestie, Hyosung, BoA: Rating This Months K-Pop Comebacks (So Far)

I know the month has only started, but I don’t feel like writing an article for each of these songs as I have been busy with other things, so here they all are in one friendly post! Let’s start out with the biggest (and most disappointing) comeback: BoA.

Queen BoA released new pre-release track “Who Are You” featuring rapper Gaeko and it’s pretty bland. It sounds like really dated J-pop. This song could have easily been a track on her “Outgrow” album from 2006. It makes sense as that was BoA’s prime and she composed the song herself, so she’s probably still stuck in that time period. It’s not awful, but really forgettable. I am sure upcoming title track “Kiss My Lips” will slay though.

Next we have flop group BESTIE with the track “Excuse Me.” These mega flops recently promised a huge gift to their fans if they can get 5th place on a verity show poll. FIFTH PLACE. To be honest they probably won’t get that high, which sucks because this song is the anthem of the decade. It’s a risky pop number for the group as it has a pretty unique flow – two different choruses! – and the video is full of homoerotic imagery. I mean the entire video concept is that these girls suck at picking guys because every hot guy they meet is secretly a fudge packer. Iconic! Now before sensitive homo’s start accusing BESTie of associating gays with perverts, it should be noted that Koreans don’t really acknowledge gay people too often, so this is still pretty progressive.

Then we have Hyosung’s new solo single “Into You.” So basically, this song is just the Spice Girl’s “Say You’ll Be There” beat mixed with Hyomin’s “Nice Body” chorus. Is this even a new song? I feel like it’s more so a mash-up cover. It slays though as one would expect from mixing those two iconic songs together.

Lastly we have Eunjung under the alias Elsie with the Duble Sidekick produced “I’m Good.” Okay, so this is kind of a hot ass mess. The song itself is a rehash of JiYeon’s “1Min 1Sec” with literally the exact same concept and choreography as well. The video was shot on the same brick room set that was used in T-ara’s “Day By Day” video, and the entire alias thing is so half baked. Why are they doing Eunjung like this? Even the featuring on the song is annoying. I am super disappointing with this. After only day of release it’s barely in the top 100 on MelOn so it seems the identity change did nothing for her. Sad!

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Eurovision 2015: Rating All The Songs From Semi-Final 1

1. Moldova: Eduard Romanyuta – “I Want Your Love”

Rating: 700/10

No, that 700 out of 10 wasn’t a typo. This song is iconic from start to end and you haters will deal. Like it or not, this is where pop is going. That early 2000’s boyband sound is coming back boo! From Austin Mahone’s boyband inspired album to Oscar Zia’s NSYNC-esque Melfest 2014 entry, Eduard is ahead of his time! In 2-3 years time this is what all mainstream pop will sound like. Swallow that bitter pill and stay mad over king Eddie!

2. Armenia: Genealogy – “Face The Shadow”

Rating: 1/10

This song is so damn messy. It’s about all the Armenian’s living abroad, but the production is serving local musical theater realness. Less is more Armenia, as in less of this song please.

3. Belgium: Loïc Nottet- “Rhythm Inside”

Rating: 8/10

Upon first listen I actually sort of hated this song. It sounded like a cheap Lorde wannabe, but it eventually got stuck in my head something fierce. I think it’s sort of pretentious, but so is Lorde so it works.

4. Netherlands: Trijntje Oosterhuis- “Walk Along”

Rating: 6/10

Nothing special, but definitely not awful. A little beige, but it’s solid filler. Probably won’t make the final, though.

5. Finland: Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät- “Aina mun pitää”

Rating: 0/10

This song is a train wreck. I know the guys are disabled, but c’mon. This song sounds like nothing but noise.

6. Greece: Maria-Elena Kyriakou – “One Last Breath”

Rating: 6/10

This song is pretty solid, as Greece entries usually are, but it’s nothing special. I guess Greece’s decade long ability to always get into the top 10 is over.

7. Estonia: Elina Born & Stig Rästa- “Goodbye To Yesterday”

Rating: 9/10

Of the songs that are majorly hyped pre-contest, this is one of my favorites. I find it pretty moving, and Elina in particular emotes her sections pretty flawlessly. This song is also really good live.

8. Macedonia: Daniel Kajmakoski- “Autumn Leaves”

Rating: 6/10

This song sounds more Irish than Macedonian, but it’s pretty good. It’s actually kind of gorgeous. Maybe not the most electrifying, but I do enjoy listening to it. The music video is so cute too.

9. Serbia: Bojana Stamenov- “Beauty Never Lies”

Rating: 7/10

This song is corny as hell. The beat is cheaper than dirt too. That said, it’s a really likable song. The EDM section at the end probably cost the producer less than 1 Euro to produce, but it was money well spent. This will become the gay anthem of 2015 among Eurofans.

10. Hungary: Boggie – “Wars For Nothing”

Rating: 1/10

The thing about releasing a statement song at Eurovision is the song needs to still be catchy. This is anything but catchy. It’s boring and will definitely put the audience to sleep.

11. Belarus: Uzari & Maimuna- “Time”

Rating: 9/10

One of my favorites, I really love the drama this song brings to the table. Hopefully it can bring that to the stage and make the final! It’s not doing so hot in the odds, so I am a bit worried this will get overlooked.

12. Russia: Polina Gagarina – “A Million Voices”

Rating: 8/10

This is Eurovision power ballad cheese at its best. Totally undeniable despite the questionable country and ironic lyrics. That said, it’s pretty standard in terms of what we hear ever year at ESC. This can easily go top 10, though.

13. Denmark: Anti-Social Media – “The Way You Are”

Rating: 3/10

I reviewed this during Melodi Grand Prix and my views on the song haven’t changed. It’s crap. Such a waste!

14. Albania: Elhaida Dani – “I’m Alive”

Rating: 3/10

This song is so forgettable. I can’t even remember how it goes even after multiple listens. Pass.

15. Romania: Voltaj – “De La Capat”

Rating: 8/10

This song is so moving. I’m not sure the message of the song will translate to the audience, but this will probably go to the final.

16. Georgia: Nina Sublatti – “Warrior”

Rating: 10/10

This song is so good. People need to wake up and get behind this future Eurovision winner before it’s too late! The drama of this song is just so rich. It also has the best music video of any entry so far – I’m waiting Sweden…..

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