ESTONIA

The Estonians pick their representative for Vienna today, and the overwhelming favourite seems to be Stig Rästa & Elina Born’s Goodbye To Yesterday.  The hype around this laid back duet wasn’t resonating with me until I saw their semi final performance last Saturday, and now I’m completely sold.  Though it’s expected to win by many, you never know exactly what to expect from Eesti Laul, however.  The ten song final is always an interesting mix of genres, from the gritty rock of Elephants From Neptune with their entry Unriddle Me, to the light, airy pop ballad Superlove from Elisa Kolk.  2010 Estonian representative Robin Jukental (aka Malcolm Lincoln) is in the running with The Big Bangers and their song Troubles.  Also worth keeping an eye on is Triin Niitoja & John4 (who are always somewhere in the Estonian charts) with their banjo-pop (new term?) track This is Our Choice.  Daniel Levi’s Burning Lights was a high energy, easy on the ears (and eyes) treat, there are keytars, AND he stage dives at the end! After getting the chance to be at their final in 2012, I can easily say Eesti Laul continues to be one of the most interesting and diverse selections in the Eurovision world.

The Eesti Laul 2015 final starts at 2:35pm EST (9:35pm local time) and will be streaming on Eurovision.tv.

LITHUANIA

Lithuania’s Eurovision journey is a bit different from others.  Last weekend, they chose the song that will represent them in Vienna (This Time) and tonight, they’ll choose the artist(s) that will perform it.  Of the three singers left, it seems that Monika Linkytė and Vaidas Baumila are favoured to both be chosen singing the song as a duet.   It’s sugary sweet but highly catchy, and works in this format.  Wait for the break midway through, as well!

Eurovizija 2015 starts at 2:00pm EST (9:00pm local time) and will be available through LRT’s website.

SWEDEN

Melodifestivalen is well underway now, and we’re into the third week of the semi finals.  Tonight’s songs are overall, well, underwhelming.  Out of the seven, only one really stands out, and that’s Talang Sverige 2014 (Sweden’s Got Talent) winner Jon Henrik Fjällgren’s Jag är fri. The singer is bringing a touch of Sami joik music to the Melodifestivalen stage, and from what rehearsal clips have shown, it will be a beautifully staged performance along with a hauntingly stunning song. I hope the Swedish public send this directly to the final tonight. Andreas Johnson is back, yet again, with Living to Die – it might be his best entry since 2007’s A Little Bit of Love.  There’s a Shake it Off rip-off in the mix, and a track from former Idol contestant Andreas Weise that reminds me of John Newman’s Love Me Again.

The third semi final of Melodifestivalen 2015 starts at 2:00pm EST (8:00pm local time) and will be streaming on SVT’s website.

FINLAND

The third (and last) semi-final of Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu 2015 is tonight, and after Siru’s shock non-qualification last week, it’s anyone’s guess what will happen tonight, and eventually round off the final lineup.  The song I’ve heard the most buzz about from this semi final is Hold Your Colours – I expect to see this go through (though, I said the same about Siru last week!), as for the rest – who knows!

UMK 2015’s third semi final starts at 2:00pm EST (9:00pm local time) and will be streaming on YLE’s website.

HUNGARY

The second semi final of A Dal 2015 is tonight, and 2011 Hungarian representative Wolf Kati is in the mix with Ne engedj el (good, but doesn’t beat What About My Dreams!) – Mesmerize from Passed is in this semi final as well, and while the recorded version of this song is great, the live performance leaves a bit to be desired.  I quite like Fire from Ív, and hope for the best for it tonight.

A Dal 2015’s second semi final starts at 2:25pm EST (8:25pm local time) and will be streaming on M1’s site.

LATVIA

Tomorrow, Latvia will choose their entry for Vienna, and the four songs and artists in the mix to wave the Latvian flag are actually quite interesting.  Aminata’s Love Injected is different, and could be polarizing if it does end up winning.  However, it’s my favourite in the final and I’d love to see it win.

 

ALSO: AUSTRIA began their selection last night, and in a pre-recorded show featuring sixteen acts, The Makemakes advanced to the next round! They performed this song (which I played a few weeks ago on Meanwhile, in Europe) and I can’t wait to see what they have up their sleeves as a possible entry.

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