Poland: Gromee & Lukas Meijer – “Light Me Up”
Eurovision fans rarely like “DJ music.” Give them a diva ballad and they’ll go crazy, but an EDM song that could be played at a festival and they’ll either complain or totally ignore it. Thankfully Poland is a televoting mega-power, so this could possibly take a spot in the final despite Eurofans hating this type of genre. That said, this is dance-poppy enough to possibly win a few over. Yes, 40% of the song is beat drop, but its also really catchy and has a good pop hook.
Cyprus: Eleni Foureria – “Fuego”
The 2018 sister to Cyprus’ 2012 banger of an entry “La La Love,” I’ve had this song on repeat for months. Its a total smash, with a catchy chorus and an ethno dance-pop beat drop that I thank God every day for. Imagine a remix EP. Now if only she could sing.
Finland: Saara Aalto – “Monsters”
This is pure Eurovision pop magic. A big diva voice, a catchy chorus, and a big eurodance beat. Songs like these are why I got into the contest. Saara can be a bit over the top to say the least, so I am worried about how this will translate live and whether she will turn off voters with her insane theatrics, but the song is a total banger.
Sweden: Benjamin Ingrosso – “Dance You Off”
The Ingrosso clan really churns out catchy songs. Sebastian, and now his cousin Benjamin, are both very good at releasing quality pop music. “Dance You Off” is a smooth and silky disco track with absolutely EXCELLENT staging. I can’t imagine this flopping in May.
Israel: Netta – “Toy”
Easily the most charming and unique of the 2018 entries, this song is the current favorite to win by both the bookies odds and the OGAE poll, (not that either of those are good at predicting a winner). That said, she KILLED this song live a few weeks ago at Israel Calling. This will be top 3 at worst. Anything lower would be a robbery.
Czech Republic: Mikolas Josef – “Lie to Me”
Sure, this song features horrible lyrics such as “but steady plenty motherfuckers wanna eat my spaghetti,” and the production is alarmingly similar to former One Direction member and Cheryl Cole marry-er Liam Payne’s debut single “Strip That Down,” but it’s also super catchy and Czechia’s best entry ever. Some you win, some you lose.
Azerbaijan: Aisel – “X My Heart”
Dated? Generic? Not relevant to any current music trends? Awful lyrics? For sure. But from the moment I heard “luna moon me up up up” I was sold. This is why I love the contest. Music like this only exists within the ESC bubble. It’s tacky and dated and just so good.
Moldova: DoReDos – “My Lucky Day”
The slice of ethno-pop the contest needs every year. This time, in banger form. This is ehtno-folk music for the clubs, if there are clubs for ethno-folk music.
Belarus: Alekseev – “Forever”
Surprised how much this song grew on me. He’s revamped it 100 times and I pretty much ignored them all. One day I gave it another shot and found it to be a pretty good ballad. Sort of a throwback to Dima Bilan, though not a winner in this decade sadly.
Germany: Michael Schulte – “You Let Me Walk Alone”
The best German entry since 2012’s “Still Standing,” which this song kinda sounds like. A tender ballad about a father who walked out on their family, it is full of emotion. Not sure how well such a low impact song will do in May though.