Author Topic: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012  (Read 30485 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Martial

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Posts: 3174
  • Country: fr
  • Blondie's Lover
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #25 on: June 04, 2012, 02:39:57 AM »
no it's not malta  :sick:

the mystery continues ;D

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42162#msg42162

Offline ijm123

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Topic Author
  • Posts: 11239
  • Country: scotland
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #26 on: June 04, 2012, 11:58:52 PM »
So we move onto my top 20

20. GERMANY - ROMAN LOB - STANDING STILL

As a song it's very pleasant but does get somewhat repetitive at times but what sells the song well is Roman himself.  Vocally he was sound and he has a lovely look about him.  However the overall presentation of the song was a little bit disappointing.  It looked as though it was a first rehearsal with little care taken with clothing and general demeanour on stage

19. BELARUS - LITESOUND - WE ARE THE HEROES

I was not impressed when Belarus changed their song as I really liked Alena Lanskaya's song....then they changed the song from a rocky tune to a more poppy rock tune and I was even less convinced.  However the performance was decent and convincing and won me over somewhat...hence it's placing at 19th

18. SERBIA - ŽELJKO JOKSIMOVIC - NIJE LJUBAV STVAR

I made it clear that I just don't get the outpouring of love for Željko Joksimović's songs...that's not to say I don't find them pleasant because I do - I just don't think they are the masterpieces a lot of fans take them to be.  The beginning of this still sounds uncannily like Paradise by Coldplay but the rest is pure Joksimović.  He sells the song very well - as always - which is why it's as high as it is because there are songs lower that I actually prefer on the CD version.

17. LITHUANIA - DONNY MONTELL - LOVE IS BLIND

OK so the whole blindfold thing is cheesy as heck but there is no doubt that he performed his little socks off in the semi final.  He wasn't as convincing in the final but I personally feel he deserved to be in the final.  There were a lot of clichés in the song and performance but that, to me at least, is what made it quite endearing.

16. MALTA - KURT CALLEJA - THIS IS THE NIGHT

I was pleased for Malta when this qualified because it showed that someone other than Chiara could qualify for the final.  The song is quite dated (it wouldn't be out of place in ESC 1999 for instance) but Kurt really sells it well and those foot moves were awesome and became a real talking point for the commentators who were at a loss as to how they did them (apparently they had been trying for days and couldn't do it at all :laugh: ).  Perhaps I'm being generous putting this this high - but as I said previously places 14 to 34 could've finished anywhere between those places.

15. AZERBAIJAN - SABINA BABAYEVA - WHEN THE MUSIC DIES

A very strong vocal performance from the local girl.  This one has a bit more ooomph about it - but still not quite enough for me to be totally convinced that it's 4th place was anything more than diaspora and voting for the host nation.  No doubt that the girl can sing though - but there were a few better vocal performances in the final.

14. MOLDOVA - PASHA PARFENY - LAUTAR

The linguistic disaster in the chorus aside this was a fun and happy song that was very well performed in both the semi and the final.  Vocally he was decent and the dancers were fun to watch - even if one of them was so thin I've seen fatter matchsticks.  All together it was a good fun entry that may have finished slightly higher than it deserved but still pretty much deserved every point it got.

13 ROMANIA - MANDINGA - ZALEILAH

The sound issues from the semi have not been taken into account in this ranking as it would be unfair to judge them based on a technically flawed performance beyond their control.   This song has all the characteristics of a huge summer hit and in the final it was performed well.  Elena at least looked to be having a ball as she was performing.  For once I feel that Romania were slightly under-rated

12. NETHERLANDS - JOAN FRANKA - YOU AND ME

The song is still in my top 10 in the CD version but the live was very disappointing.  Vocally she was totally shown up by a very strong vocal performance immediately before her and I don't think her nerves helped her at all.  The song though is catchy, fun and nicely melodic.  Our commentator explained the reason behind the Native American headdress because it did seem totally out of place and bore little relation to the song itself.

11. HUNGARY - COMPACT DISCO - THE SOUND OF OUR HEARTS

I liked this song when it was chosen but was worried by the quality of the vocalist in the NF.  He obviously worked on his vocals as they weren't bad either in the Semi or the Final.  However the song got totally lost in the Final as it was in the middle of a load of ballads in the death draw of #2.  It still should have done MUCH better than it did though.

So there you have it - positions 11-20

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42167#msg42167
Blue, Blue, Blue, Johnny Blue
Welche Farbe hat die Sonne?

Offline ijm123

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Topic Author
  • Posts: 11239
  • Country: scotland
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #27 on: June 05, 2012, 12:04:49 AM »
So in the top 10 - in alphabetical order are

1. ALBANIA



2. ESTONIA



3. FINLAND



4. ICELAND



5. ITALY



6. MACEDONIA



7. PORTUGAL



8. SLOVENIA



9. SPAIN



10. UNITED KINGDOM



Who will my winner be??

Find out tomorrow night

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42168#msg42168
Blue, Blue, Blue, Johnny Blue
Welche Farbe hat die Sonne?

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #28 on: June 05, 2012, 12:14:19 AM »
I must say that this is a pretty great Top Ten Ian. We have six countries in common, 3 of them in my Top 15 and the lowest ranked one is my #17. As Morgan already pointed out, we all seem to agree quite a lot this year, but I think this is a particular year in which the good and the bad ones are fairly obvious.  :shrug:

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42169#msg42169

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #29 on: June 05, 2012, 12:17:16 AM »
By the way I just realized that you have 9 ballads to one single uptempo in your Top 10. You're more ballad obsessed than I am this time around, I have at least a 7-3.  :P

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42170#msg42170

Offline ijm123

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Topic Author
  • Posts: 11239
  • Country: scotland
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #30 on: June 05, 2012, 01:30:13 AM »
I think the most unexpected one in my top 10 must be the one uptempo one.  Who'd have thought I'd have Italy in my top 10 :o

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42171#msg42171
Blue, Blue, Blue, Johnny Blue
Welche Farbe hat die Sonne?

Offline Danijel

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 1006
  • Country: il
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #31 on: June 05, 2012, 02:44:22 AM »
Great top 10 Ian, i guess 7/10 of them are also in my final top 20! i only disagree about boring Portugal, and not to mention Albania...but the rest are very cool!

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42172#msg42172

Offline Amaranth

  • De Troubadour
  • **
  • Posts: 107
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Female
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #32 on: June 05, 2012, 03:41:29 AM »
We have 3 countries in common in top 10. Iceland, Italy and my #1 Macedonia.

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42174#msg42174

Offline Martial

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Posts: 3174
  • Country: fr
  • Blondie's Lover
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #33 on: June 05, 2012, 04:51:27 PM »
This time we drop to only 5 in common in TOP 10 (including the one upbeat, so that's only 4 ballads for me lol) but I just noticed that I only had 6 from my top 10 in your top20 actually even though I had 19 of your top20 in MY top26... proving that I'm "ok" with your top as they are songs I don't hate, but not necessarly the same favorites and the same order... my 26th made it to your top10 :doh:

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42179#msg42179

Offline ijm123

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Topic Author
  • Posts: 11239
  • Country: scotland
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #34 on: June 06, 2012, 12:49:02 AM »
So we finally move into my top 10 of 2012....who's going to win?
Before I reveal the placings I must say that most of the top 10 is ballads (90% of it to be exact :laugh: ).  One thing I will say is that most of this top 10 is all about THE VOICE.

10. PORTUGAL - FILIPA SOUSA - VIDA MINHA - 1 POINT

After last years disaster from Portugal it was nice to see them returning to something a little more traditional....and by traditional I mean a girl with a good voice singing a ballad.  It has some lovely fado touches to it and Filipa gave it her all....but in a tough semi it was never going to qualify - more's the pity.

09. ITALY - NINA ZILLI - L'AMORE E FEMMINA (OUT OF LOVE) - 2 POINTS

I wasn't convinced by Per sempre when it was chosen and I was one of the few that was actually quite pleased with the change.  This song was a little less Winehouse-esque - which IMO is an added bonus.  The decision to put most of it in English wasn't the best idea though.  The performance was a little less convincing than I expected from Nina but was still competent....and hey I have Italy in top 10 - the apocalypse is nigh!!!!

08. FINLAND - PERNILLA - NÄR JAG BLUNDAR - 3 POINTS

I always thought this was a beautiful song and Pernilla has a lovely voice - and nothing changed that view after the performance.  However I wasn't surprised that it didn't qualify simply because the song was almost too simple in it's simplicity if you see what I mean.  It had to stay in Finnish-Swedish or it would've lost a lot of it's magic - but that was possibly a reason why it was largely ignored.

07. UNITED KINGDOM - ENGELBERT HUMPERDINCK - LOVE WILL SET YOU FREE - 4 POINTS

I said this last year - but it's not often that I can be proud of our entry....after all historically we must be the most overrated country in ESC history.   This year I was totally gobsmacked when Engelbert was chosen but when the song was revealed I was hooked.   I was so sure he could get a decent result with all his experience....but as soon as he'd performed I knew he was doomed.  The quality of the song is enough to put it as high as it is

06. SLOVENIA - EVA BOTO - VERJAMEM - 5 POINTS

Another one where the song quality has taken it as high as it is.  Pre-contest it was my #2 but the performance wasn't convincing and the costuming was pretty disastrous to be honest.  I think her age showed during the performance and the lack of experience told.   However 17th place was utterly ridiculous.

05. SPAIN - PASTORA SOLER - QUEDATE CONMIGO - 6 POINTS

Now HERE'S a voice.   Seriously this woman can really sing.  The song is good (unusually for G:Son) and it has some serious ooomph to it - which as I've explained before is something I require in my ballads - but with a different singer I really don't think it would've done anywhere near as well as it did.  Without Pastora the song is nothing....with her it's wonderful

04. MACEDONIA - KALIOPI - CRNO I BELO - 7 POINTS

I absolutely love this woman's voice - always have....and boy can she perform.  The song starts as a nice ballad...then rocks into a great rock ballad.   As with Pastora - I really don't think it would've worked with another singer....simply because Kaliopi absolutely delivers every single note with emotion and power.  Quite possibly the best Macedonian entry to date....certainly the best performance of a Macedonian entry

03. ESTONIA - OTT LEPLAND - KUULA - 8 POINTS

Another song that I absolutely loved as soon as it was picked.  By far the best male vocal performance of the entire show was Ott's performance in the final.  The song is beautifully constructed and the performance was beautifully understated.  Everything about it was just right.

02. ALBANIA - RONA NISHLIU - SUUS - 10 POINTS

That vocal performance in the semi final must rank as one of the very best vocals in the history of the contest.  It was utterly mesmerising.  The only reason that this in #2 when it was clearly the best performance is that simply I preferred my #1 as a song.   This song is complex and actually took me a few listens before I really appreciated it.   However the performance alone has taken it from the lower reaches of the top 15 to #2.

01. ICELAND - GRETA SALOME & JONSI - NEVER FORGET - 12 POINTS

From the moment this song appeared at the NF I was utterly in love with it.  Changing it to English made little difference to me and I listened to it on repeat for hours on end without ever getting bored with it.  There's no doubt Jonsi's performance in the semi was disappointing but he was much better in the final.  Greta was lovely throughout.  It really shouldn't come as a surprise to many that this ends the year as my #1 - it's really my sort of song through and through.  It gives Iceland their 3rd victory in my charts in 9 years and their 4th overall.

So there you have it.  My full ranking is

12 - ICELAND
10 - ALBANIA
08 - ESTONIA
07 - MACEDONIA
06 - SPAIN
05 - SLOVENIA
04 - UK
03 - FINLAND
02 - ITALY
01 - PORTUGAL

Eagerly awaiting Can and Morgan's lists :)

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42183#msg42183
Blue, Blue, Blue, Johnny Blue
Welche Farbe hat die Sonne?

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #35 on: June 06, 2012, 01:21:32 AM »
Thank you for the first complete ranking of the year Ian.  :goodjob:

4 of your Top 5 are in my Top 7, so all in all there's really very little we disagree about this year. Since Morgan prefers to wait until jury/televoting split is announced I'll start posting my complete ranking tomorrow with my #31 to #42.

By the way I hope that Niko, Danijel, Remy, Amaranth and others will also follow us. ;)

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42184#msg42184

Offline Martial

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Posts: 3174
  • Country: fr
  • Blondie's Lover
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #36 on: June 06, 2012, 02:14:12 AM »
Well common sense took over, as your top 3 is in my top 10 and two of them are my #1 and #2 of the year... but which? how ranked? you'll see later. Thanks for sharing your personal ideas, opinions and rankings. It's always courageous to go out in the open with personal thoughts. I hope I can return the favor soon.

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42185#msg42185

Offline ijm123

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Topic Author
  • Posts: 11239
  • Country: scotland
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #37 on: June 06, 2012, 02:47:37 AM »
I think this is the first time I've gone first with my rankings - so it was an experience.  Morgan I expect to see Albania at #1 in your rankings with Estonia at #2...we'll find out soon enough.

Can't wait to see everyone else's rankings :cheer:

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42186#msg42186
Blue, Blue, Blue, Johnny Blue
Welche Farbe hat die Sonne?

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #38 on: June 06, 2012, 11:39:48 PM »
So here I go with my final ranking of ESC 2012. Today #42 to #31. You'll find three brackets at the end of each paragraph; first of them shows my ranking for the entry out of 100 top marks, the second one the rank of this particular entry in the complete ranking of its country and the last one shows the placing of the entry in my famous all time chart, now consisting of 1280 entries.

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42189#msg42189

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #39 on: June 06, 2012, 11:44:12 PM »
42. GEORGIA: Well, it’s simply undeniable that this entry was massively improved between the very first version we saw and the actual performance on the semi final night. However the tragedy is it still cannot escape from the rock bottom of my yearly chart despite all the improvement. Indeed, the fact that Anri is a helluva performer with an astonishing voice ironically makes this entry even more deplorable. A non-ESC fan lady put it perfectly in our viewing party: “Think of all that he could have done with that voice!” No matter how polished the finished product sounds the material is still rotten to the core from the lyrics to the composition and adding that messy staging which was not even remotely entertaining to the mix this is easily my choice for the worst entry of the current decade so far. (10/100) (5/5) (1269/1280)

41. AUSTRIA: As with Georgia I hated this the moment I first heard and my opinion never changed in the course of three months. Of course this type of music has never been my thing, so I can’t objectively criticize its musical merits but for a song about “shaking ass” this was an utterly boring and joyless stage show. It was kind of a shame that the only interesting thing about their NF performance, the shiny LED dresses thing couldn’t exactly be recreated on the ESC stage but I guess this is a risk you should take if you base your whole performance on such a frivolous gimmick. As I normally don’t, I didn’t follow the NF processes this year either, but later I saw a few of the entries from the Austrian final and all those I saw were much better than this nonsense. I have a feeling that especially that Conchita girl could have done quite well in Baku, so shame on you Austria! (11/100) (45/45) (1267/1280)

40. SAN MARINO: I must admit that this one is a little more complex than the previous two. Firstly the song is musically not awful, just dated and mediocre but actually I can imagine myself mildly enjoying it with a totally different set of lyrics, with other arrangements and with a completely different staging. This is first of the two songs this year in my opinion were killed off by their own lyrics even before the contest kicked off. I won’t go into details why I find the lyrics criminally awful assuming that it’s obvious enough, but I’ll only remind that something doesn’t magically become “satirical” just because you claim so. Apart from all the lyrics fiasco the staging for this was also ultimately frustrating. It couldn’t even come close to the Verka Serduchka realm of “bad but still enjoyable”, it was just “bad and dull and totally forgettable”. I still feel sorry though, for both Valentina who seems to be a fine singer and a lovely young (well not that much, but…) woman and San Marino which I still believe to have a potential to succeed some day in this contest. But it was clear from the day one that it would not be this year. As for Ralph Siegel, he’ll die hard won’t he? (15/100) (3/3) (1253/1280)

39. MONTENEGRO: This one was not that low for me with only the studio version. It was always difficult to take it seriously music-wise, but the lyrics were occasionally funny and the whole act seemed to have a point. Unfortunately my good will wasn’t enough to find any kind of artistic value in the live performance. He looked like a mess on the stage and no matter what point you’re trying to make that look is simply insulting to your audience in my book. If he really didn’t care for any of this charade he simply shouldn’t have participated. I cannot think of anything more repulsive than an entertainer giving the impression of someone who utterly despises entertaining. With all its gimmicks half heartedly trying to be funny and of course failing miserably this was probably worst overall performance of the year. However since I still find the studio version relatively better than the previous three I place this one at #39. By the way if you’re paying attention to the last brackets you can see that bottom four of this year all are in my bottom 50 of all time making 2012 the most represented year in “the 50 worst ESC songs” list of mine. (20/100) (4/4) (1235/1280)

38. IRELAND: Well, what can I write about them that wasn’t already said or written? Last year they had a very modern song, although not my cup of tea I started to enjoy after a while. This year they are back as horrible singers as ever, as annoying brats as ever and this time with a song dated beyond belief. Including the actual winner we have more than a few songs in the contest that recall 90’s, but this one does that in the worst imaginable way: with a song that wouldn’t have sounded fresh, exciting or cutting edge even in 1992. Thanks to their loyal, loud and even more annoying themselves fan base I never had any doubts that this would easily qualify, but it still hurt. Maybe because this year the extra frustration coming from the massacre of a song with potential was absent, I sat through their both performances marginally more easily than last year, but I still hope Ireland gets the message as “enough is enough” and I’ll never have to hear the word “Jedward” until the end of my days. (28/100) (45/46) (1203/1280)

37. SLOVAKIA: Another one that shifted down significantly after the live performance. It’s no secret that I’m not a rock fan by any kind of criteria but I still partially enjoy this in the studio version. It was near to mid-table in my pre-contest ranking. They had a very professional looking video, a good looking singer who doesn’t sound that bad and quite good production values for this genre. However that live performance was almost too bad for words. Those were easily the worst vocals of the year and even the band looked like they knew they were fighting for a lost cause because of the absolutely talentless front guy with whom they were stuck. Some people just don’t have a clue what their calling is and is not. If this pretty boy loves to act like a rock star that much, maybe he should try his hand in screen acting. After all they have a dubbing possibility there. There are rumors that this might be the end of Slovakia in the ESC. While I have enjoyed some of their entries in the past if this is the best they have to offer then I’ll gladly say goodbye. (34/100) (6/7) (1169/1280)

36. FRANCE: I’d heard some of Anggun’s work before this year, since a few of my Francophone friends were big on her but nothing exactly grabbed my attention. Still the announcement of her participation somewhat excited me since she was a familiar name and France seemed to have found back its touch at ESC for a few years now. But the song itself was a huge letdown. It was not really horrible but no matter how many times I heard it I never found anything even remotely interesting in it as well. And then the live performance came and it was even a bigger disappointment. Anggun’s vocals while not disastrous were far from perfect and the whole choreography was such a complete mess. Even with that much going on there was still nothing interesting on the stage. On this year’s final night there were two entries that seemed to last much longer than three minutes to me and France was one of them. Just like the song itself the performance too went on and on and on, repeating itself failing to build up something slightly meaningful. Even those Anggun fan friends of mine were completely underwhelmed at the end. Most of the truly rotten stuff eliminated before the final night this should have been dead last after the idiotic twins. So, technically France is overrated for once. This should ease the Amaury pain, shouldn’t it? No, it really doesn’t. (40/100) (50/56) (1114/1280)

35. CYPRUS: Now there’s a song I totally hated the minute I heard. This kind of slutty, bubblegum pop can go either way with me. If I enjoy the melody and the vocals are fine I can fairly like it although this genre almost never hits the very top of my yearly charts. (Yugoslavia 1990 might be an exception, maybe a few more too.) But mostly this type of entries belongs from mid to lower parts of my lists. This one gets on my nerves every time I hear those annoying “la la la”s in the chorus. However in time it sort of grew on me ever so slightly and with a rather generic but professional choreography the overall performance was not really horrible. As for the vocals, this debate about the vocals of Ivi and Eleftheria is one of the bigger mysteries of ESC ’12 to me. While every time I go back I find Ivi’s vocals much worse compared to her compatriot, many other people (including Ian) claims that she was slightly better than Eleftheria. While confusing, it wouldn’t actually make much difference as we say in Turkish (with a rough translation) “you can’t choose between s**t and excrement”. Having said that both song and performance wise I’m in the Greek team of this year’s Hellenic sluts’ duel, although neither of the entries is exactly crown jewel. Still this one in particular feels like a complete waste of spot on the final night to me, even though I also feel slightly glad for Cyprus as they usually fail to get out of their semis. (43/100) (25/30) (1083/1280)

34. NORWAY: Every year I feel irritated when one of the acts shamelessly copies the previous winner. While this year we (thankfully) don’t have an Ell/Nikki clone, the carbon copy of an act that couldn’t even win the whole thing is even more embarrassing to watch. By the way I find the song itself easily better than “Popular”, but that’s not exactly a huge achievement. There are more than a few commercial jingles in which I find more musical depth than in “Popular”. However I think no one can deny that Sweden’s last year’s achievement was more about the performer than the song. And that’s exactly where fails Norway this year: This boy is no Saade. He may not be a worse vocalist than him (now that would be an achievement) but he simply lacks his magnetism. I personally don’t find Tooji even passably attractive but since most people seem to disagree with me on this, I’d suggest that he MIGHT have been marginally more successful if he tried to find his own personality rather than adopting the one that was already presented on the same stage just one year ago. I think it’s huge shame that this one beat Bulgaria in the semi final only with a tie-break, not because I’m a huge fan of Sofi’s (although she was admittedly better) but because that failure would be so meaningful for all kinds of ESC copycats all around Europe. I hope ending last in the final still gives the message. (44/100) (42/51) (1072/1280)

33. SWITZERLAND: This one moved up a few steps in my list after the live performance. As Ian also pointed out in his review, the pronunciation of the word “wildest” bugged me so much, that I couldn’t even concentrate on the song in the studio version. Not that it turned out to be a masterpiece or so, but with an energetic and vocally competent performance it was easily listenable on the night. So in my ranking this is the point where the truly bad stuff ends and mediocrity starts. And I don’t think in this year’s contest there can be found any other entry to deserve the label “mediocre” as much as this one. Almost nothing terribly wrong but also next to nothing to be excited about! Maybe sung in Italian without the notorious “wildest” could have been mildly more enjoyable but in any case this one wouldn’t belong to the Grand Final. But I’m also not surprised that it came so close to do that in a weak semi final. (45/100) (46/54) (1057/1280)

32. LATVIA: This is the second entry this year that sabotaged itself with its own lyrics. Maybe not an outright masterpiece but I still think this is one of the better compositions this year. But those lyrics! There must surely be other examples too but I really don’t remember any other instance in the contest history where an entry lost almost all its appeal because of the sheer stupidity of its lyrics. Of course the live performance was not exactly flawless but even with every other single thing done right this would have still had no chance in hell as long as it claimed itself simply “beautiful”! By the way Anmary improved her singing remarkably between the NF and the actual contest and her quite competent delivery made it even more poignant during the performance. But vocals aside the whole staging was also a complete mess and probably the most amateurish looking of them all. While the other two Baltics going strong enough Latvia seems to have dropped the ball in the ESC game permanently. Shame on them! (46/100) (8/13) (1023/1280)

31. BELGIUM: Probably because last year a ballad won this year turned out to be a ballads’ paradise. For an unapologetic ballad lover like me this is always good news and seven of the top ten in the final being ballads was even better news. However no matter how one loves ballads there comes a time to put a ballad in a ranking list of ascending order. My least favorite ballad this year and by very far (as you’ll see when we go up the list tomorrow) came from Belgium. While the very young singer was cute and innocent looking there was almost nothing about this one I felt genuine or sincere. That must be some sort of an anti-Tom Dice effect. The song itself was whiny in the studio version to begin with but surprisingly enough it got even whinier with the live performance. Even though her vocals were not totally off, her whole stage presence and her singing temperament left much to be desired.  A totally unremarkable performance of an instantly forgettable song, and that’s all. Better luck (for a better choice) next year Belgium! (47/100) (40/55) (1015/1280)


Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42190#msg42190

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #40 on: June 06, 2012, 11:54:33 PM »
That's all for tonight, and here's a reminder of the Top 30 in alphabetical order:


Albania
Azerbaijan
Belarus
Bosnia-Herzegovina
Bulgaria
Croatia
Denmark
Estonia
Finland
Germany
Greece
Hungary
Iceland
Israel
Italy
Lithuania
Macedonia
Malta
Moldova
Netherlands
Portugal
Romania
Russia
Serbia
Slovenia
Spain
Sweden
Turkey
Ukraine
United Kingdom

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42191#msg42191

Offline ijm123

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Topic Author
  • Posts: 11239
  • Country: scotland
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #41 on: June 07, 2012, 11:16:56 PM »
That made for interesting reading Can.  The only thing I would like to comment on is the Ivi/Eleftheria vocal "debate".   To be honest neither were very good at all vocally - both dressed as cheap tarts to gain votes and had cheap songs.  The only reason I had Ivi higher was that I felt that Eleftheria's choreography was sloppy at best whereas Ivi's was decent - or as decent as it could be for a tart shaking her booty randomly 

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42194#msg42194
Blue, Blue, Blue, Johnny Blue
Welche Farbe hat die Sonne?

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #42 on: June 08, 2012, 01:19:32 AM »
That made for interesting reading Can.  The only thing I would like to comment on is the Ivi/Eleftheria vocal "debate".   To be honest neither were very good at all vocally - both dressed as cheap tarts to gain votes and had cheap songs.  The only reason I had Ivi higher was that I felt that Eleftheria's choreography was sloppy at best whereas Ivi's was decent - or as decent as it could be for a tart shaking her booty randomly

OK then, I thought one of the reasons you prefer Ivi was the vocals but I guess I was rong. After all as you also said neither of them was even adequate.  :biggrin:

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42195#msg42195

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #43 on: June 08, 2012, 01:23:51 AM »
So, here we go with #30 to #21:

30. BELARUS: The more rockish first version had a little more oomph about it even for a rock hater like me, while I share Ian’s opinion about the initial entry of Belarus this year. The final version of the eventual entry though, leaned to be a tad too “middle of the road” ending up to be too anonymous to stand out. Maybe in other semi final I could have given this a little more chance, but in the harder semi there was no doubt that it would never qualify. There’s still not much very wrong about the performance other than possibly the totally out of place and instantly off-putting horizontal choreography of the backing musicians, the lead singer looking like auditioning for the Artful Dodger in “Oliver” and of course the eternal Belarusian problematic of pronunciation. Somehow “the wieners” never bothered me as much as the Swiss take of the “wildest”, but I’m not sure why. All in all this is going down for me as one of the better inputs from Belarus, just because it’s not much offensive. Their statements after the contest were in extremely bad taste though and even I don’t let this kind of stuff interfere in my final ranking, I was strongly tempted this time around. (50/100) (3/9) (965/1280)

29. BULGARIA: Before all, I have to say that I’m a huge fan of Sofi’s duet with Slavi Trifonov “Edinstveni” from Bulgarian 2005 NF and especially her vocals there. But outside of that one recording I didn’t know much about her career. This first solo track I heard from her, I instantly hated. The melody was as cheap as they come, the mixing was both dated and amateurish sounding and the gimmick of multi language chorus was cheesy and annoying. While it was still obvious that she could definitely sing (and her Turkish pronunciation is almost impeccable) it was easily one of the horrors of 2012 for me and I cringed every time I saw someone put it in their top ten. Then the rehearsals came and when the reviews poured in almost everyone was confident that with Slovakia she was absolutely chanceless in that unusually strong semi final. Frankly this didn’t bother me at all. Boy was I in for a surprise on the semi night! As soon as the performance started I felt that she was not totally out of the game at all. Sure the song itself was still as trashy as ever, but she was singing it really, truly well and somehow her being alone in that huge stage didn’t matter one bit. Even with that awful, terrible, ridiculous outfit everyone in our party found her instantly likeable and she was a favorite to qualify by everybody but me. Of course I was still surprised to see the final outcome of that night, but not exactly shocked. I was just expecting her to be 12th or 13th or something like that. Joint 10th might have been too high considering most of the songs she actually beat that night but it was also frustrating since she would have made a much more deserving finalist than Tooji and honestly this would have made a delightful shocker for all the reviewers in the arena. (51/100) (6/8) (955/1280)

28. MALTA: OK, first of all it’s not really bad. Not bad at all! I can almost see it near my top ten, but only in ESC 1994 or so. Unlike Ireland this is a better example of 90’s sounding up-tempo pop music and with such a competent vocal performance (in the studio and even more so during the live show) it could be seen as less “dated” than a “send-up” since the line between them has always been blurry enough. Probably had this been a qualifier from the first semi I would have never complained about it. However in that pretty great semi final, this qualifying over all those much better songs (pretty much all the non-qualifiers that haven’t showed up in this list yet) is still unacceptable for me. With that great draw for the final I was worried that it would again be overrated there as well, but thankfully that didn’t really happen. I would have preferred if it’d finished a couple of places lower but that’s not really significant. Also, as with Cyprus I’m a little glad that Malta made its way to the final with something other than Chiara, though I’d have preferred it to be with Thea Garrett. Seriously though, how can these two islands, Iceland and Malta constantly find those rather impressive performers without a music industry of their own? While I find Kurt personally a bit on the unlikeable side, he definitely didn’t betray the Maltese tradition of wholly unremarkable songs lift up by much better performances than they actually deserve, even upping the game after last year’s Glenn Vella. It’s a shame that the Maltese don’t have the money their seeming new best friend Azerbaijan has to buy more polished but equally soulless songs from Northern Europe. Clearly their problem is not the lack of singing talent but knowhow to make good use of it. As for the foot dancing, it really not as cloying within the whole performance but what it has got to do with the song is totally lost on me. (52/100) (14/25) (940/1280)

27. RUSSIA: And here come (finally) our dear Babushki! For me this is by far the most difficult entry to review since there are many aspects to be covered. Were these lovely old ladies really manipulated by the Mother Russia in order to gain some international public attention? Well, maybe a simple “no” wouldn’t be sufficient for this but after all if these grannies were too shy to be in the public eye on an international, maybe even global scale I guess they wouldn’t form a singing band to start with. Was this the worst vocal performance ever in an ESC final? I’m not really sure but it must be up there with the worst of it. However this once that doesn’t really bother me enormously since the point of this entry is not a flawless vocal performance. And we all know that less than a stellar vocal performance doing pretty well in this contest goes back to France Gall, when there’s something else out there to justify it (in Gall’s case it was the song itself, in grannies’ case well, just adorability). So this was a joke entry or not? I don’t think so. I think we can safely state that this was a “gimmicky” entry but not an outright joke. (To me Nalitch was a bigger joke.) The gimmick itself was also rather “innocent” as the point of the entry seemed to be “Eurovision, not much unlike life itself, is a party for everybody, so anyone willing to do it should go out and dance” and these peasant old ladies, authentic from head to toe managed to get across this simple but effective message to the whole Europe (I’m eagerly awaiting their jury/televoting split). Maybe because that message perfectly suits my ultra liberal worldview, I’m placing them almost mid-table even in a relatively strong year like this one. Sure if this exact same song had been sung by a girl band with an age average of 19 years, even with better vocals it would have been bottom five or so in this list. But in that case the message I tried to describe wouldn’t have existed. The grannies make this entry alone and the song itself is an almost passable vessel for that. It’s true that their 2010 NF entry would have had the same effect without the cheapness of this song but in that case their placing would have been much higher too in my list. Plus in 2010 they would have probably given Lena a much harder time then they gave Loreen this year (so damn you Peter Nalitch!). After all said and done they did take the ESC stage, have their 15 minutes of fame in a fashion that 99% of the women of their age in the whole wide world wouldn’t even dream of (especially the improbably adorable Natalya arguably stealing the whole show even from Loreen) and at the end they didn’t win to create an outrage among fans everywhere, so I’m more satisfied than not with this outcome. However I’d have preferred them to finish about ten places or so lower for the sake of justice in a year full of magnificent performers. Also we should probably prepare ourselves for somewhat similarly “gimmicky” entries in a few years to come. Even if we all know that the success of this particular entry came from its uniqueness, I’m afraid, many national broadcasters wouldn’t shy away from trying to recreate the magic. Still I personally find it almost impossible to root against these ladies no matter what the circumstances are. (55/100) (8/16) (885/1280)

26. HUNGARY: This is a good song for its genre; I can sense that even if it leaves me totally cold every time I hear it whether in studio or live performance. It was definitely among the ten best in its weaker semi and I was glad that it made the final even though I wasn’t expecting it to stand out. And with that horrible draw it was bound to finish in bottom five in the final. I was actually surprised to see it didn’t finish dead last and am still curious whether it was juries or televoters that supported them more, but in any case they seem to have had more appeal than I’d initially given them credit for. Yet at the end it will remain for me as a totally bland rendition of an above average but unspectacular song which would probably more at home in a radio contest than in a television show and a duller entry from an ESC country I tend to appreciate quite a lot. (56/100) (7/10) (847/1280)

25. LITHUANIA: Another problematic one for me. I think I’m in the minority among fans about this one but I prefer the song to its performer any day. Not that I find the song extraordinary, groundbreaking or even really special, but I think it has a better melody and build-up than most other entries this year and that makes it sound more “retro” than “outdated” to me. Plus I still kinda enjoy 70’s disco music and a random send-up in a 2012 contest doesn’t exactly seem too out of place at least to my eye. But, uh that singer! I know that judging people by their looks is extremely shallow but I can’t help thinking how ugly he looks every time his face pops up on the screen. But I’d still like to think that it’s not only his looks that repel me. After all, my number one singer this year is not exactly a beauty queen herself and I still love her to the bits. On the other hand everything about this guy makes my skin crawl. His blindfold, his cartwheel, his guitar miming, his Michael Jackson moves which I cannot associate with the song for the life of mine and even his vocals which were admittedly far from being awful but still shaky, unconfident and at times outright shrill. I knew that it could have qualified thanks to the excellent draw but I would never even imagine that it could end up in top three in such a strong semi final. Even with a much less than enviable draw in the final he managed to hit the top fifteen. So to me this is one of the most overrated entries for a year in which I find the final results mostly agreeable. My rather irrational hatred towards the performer aside this is not a terrible entry and I’m quite glad that Lithuania which once was my least favorite ESC country, has been getting his act together in the last few years. (57/100) (4/13) (839/1280)

24. GREECE: I have a feeling that this one will be the most controversial and most unpopular entry of my complete ranking. Well let’s talk about guilty pleasures! I don’t know, maybe it’s a cultural thing. Aside from the fact that Turkish and Greek traditional music have very much in common I also personally have some (quite far away) Greek ancestry and maybe because I have that in my blood I simply have a weakness for everything even remotely Greek. Of course I’m not that much delusional to claim that this song is some sort of a master work of art. No, not even for its almost totally commercial natured genre. Still I find the melody here quite pleasant even with those entirely unpleasant lyrics. I also quite enjoyed the live performance with a slick choreography (which totally walked all over Cyprus for my money) with the sirtaki bit at the end giving it an extra oomph. I find Eleftheria’s vocals significantly more tolerable compared to Ivi’s even though I know that this opinion is not universally shared. And the backing singer should be given some credit I believe, because it’s hard to find a better example of a sole backing singer almost single-handedly (especially during the verses) saving an entry from the ultimate disaster in the contest history. And last but probably not least, Eleftheria herself is some sort of an asset for this entry. I find her the prettiest girl in this year’s contest but more importantly she has a particular way of being totally sexy without going crassly trashy. I find her dress much classier than usual for this type of entries and she definitely carries it perfectly. Of course not someone exactly born to sing but her perky persona (without being over the top a la Kalomira who was a better singer by the way) made her a welcome presence on the stage for me. Okay that’s all for my defense and I still plead guilty but I like it. If I speak totally subjectively I’ll say it finished where it belonged, but trying to be a tad more objective, yes it’s somewhat overrated. (59/100) (26/33) (794/1288)

23. UKRAINE: ESC 2012 has made it official: I just can’t resist a shouting woman, just cannot! I have so many mixed feelings towards this particular entry that I don’t even know where to start. Firstly this type of stadium songs seems to be regular in the contest now, after France 10 and Norway 11. While I never particularly liked any of those, I didn’t hate them either (Stella’s dreadful live performance notwithstanding). This one has a more annoying, even aggressive vibe to it though, particularly with the almost idiotically simplistic chorus. But then there’s Gaitana who is nothing less than a force of nature in my opinion. She arguably has the strongest voice in the competition (that’s no small feat considering the level of entrants) this year and maybe even any year. Normally I’d have felt sorry for her for being stuck with a material not worthy of her talent but since she penned this “masterpiece” herself then there’s nothing to lament about. This is simply her music. The criticizers deeming her performance too shouty, too showy, just too much do have a solid point of course. However I personally think that that was what she should do with this kind of material. Since the song itself doesn’t include one ounce of subtlety why the performance should? To grab the attention of viewers she had to show off what Mother Nature gave her. Sure it’s not the classiest performance and even if you enjoy the ride while it lasts it leaves a rather sour aftertaste. But it’s still something different and only occasionally unpleasant. I was expecting her to end up in top ten, with that draw maybe even top five but it seems that juries simply didn’t bite the bait. Its low placing (for Ukraine I mean) makes me think that even televoters were not exactly crazy about her. While at the end I’ve grown to like Gaitana who stage presence aside gives quite fine vibes in her interviews, I can’t really complaint about her relative under-achievement which is still too much considering some of those she outscored. (59/100) (6/10) (788/1280)

22. ROMANIA: As you may notice all of the last three entries are rated 59 out of 100, which usually means in my system “almost but not quite there” for overall enjoyability. So that implies exactly half of all entries this year are more enjoyable than not. Another, more obvious implication is that I simply cannot decide a final ranking between these three. I can globally call them “my three guilty pleasures” of this year but I’m not sure Romania really belongs in the “guilty” or even “pleasure” category. Truthfully this one is not really as pleasurable for me as the last two, but I still put it over them because I feel that this one does what it sets to do much more professionally. Elena is obviously a better singer than her two Hellenic peers and a more subdued one than the Ukranian wonder. Yet, I must say that I find her handling the earphone scandal rather unprofessional. Of course we can’t know what exactly happened but from the look of it shouldn’t be something much unlike what happened to Amaury last year. So her complaining about it during the performance was not very “show-woman-like”. Thankfully neither the unfortunate incident, nor her reaction to it made much of an impact on the results and on the final right she gave a solid performance. As for the song itself, it’s very well produced for its genre and I find the Spanish lyrics a welcome change in the monotony of songs sung in English language. For a supposedly fun entry the whole thing doesn’t exactly pick me up but I’ve never been that much of a fun loving person either. So I think its placing in the final is almost acceptable but I would have definitely preferred if Kaliopi had got one single point more to beat this and at least equaled that horrible Risteska girl’s placing from 2006. (59/100) (7/14) (782/1280)

21. GERMANY: The upper half of my ranking starts with Germany which apparently decided to go Danish this year and did it pretty well. Since I find this year’s Danish entry (which is ironically enough sung by a half German artist) slightly more risqué than usual, I’ve been thinking that they passed the flag to Germany for entering a perfectly fine and utterly boring, lifeless and unoriginal entry and somehow managing to finish quite high on the final night. Indeed this sweet mid-tempo pop ballad has almost nothing to be complained about, maybe with the exception of somewhat tediously repetitive chorus, yet it feels like something you have already heard at least a dozen times even in the first listening. Still with a better singer and a livelier performance I’d have probably ranked it significantly higher mostly because I tend to find “originality” a tad overrated in arts, but just like Donny this Roman guy also simply doesn’t work for me. And no, I don’t find him ugly, I may have an unorthodox taste in men but I’m not totally blind after all. However other than cuteness, there’s almost nothing going for him from my point of view. His first live performance of this song was borderline abysmal. In the studio he sounds OK but totally unexciting. His live performance on the night was technically much improved than the first one, no doubt about that. But especially with that hideous beanie on top of his head he both looked and sounded like that stage was the last place on earth he wanted to be that moment. Apparently there’s a market for that kind of demeanor among televoters or juries or both but that’s a huge turn off for me at any rate. So while not totally unexpected at all I find his placing in the top ten (especially over two other “Big Five” countries) ultimately unpleasant. (61/100) (35/57) (741/1280)



Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42196#msg42196

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #44 on: June 08, 2012, 01:26:06 AM »

That's all for tonight, and here's a reminder of the Top 20 in alphabetical order:


Albania
Azerbaijan
Bosnia-Herzegovina
Croatia
Denmark
Estonia
Finland
Iceland
Israel
Italy
Macedonia
Moldova
Netherlands
Portugal
Serbia
Slovenia
Spain
Sweden
Turkey
United Kingdom

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42197#msg42197

Offline Martial

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Posts: 3174
  • Country: fr
  • Blondie's Lover
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #45 on: June 08, 2012, 05:09:53 PM »
excellent work Rapsodia, excellent, I will have to reply on many things when I do mine (since Donny is the hottest guy for me this year, and was THE most popular guy among all my gay and girl friends at my esc party...)

16 in common in the top 20! and th other 4 are for me 21st, 22nd, 26th and 27th!

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42200#msg42200

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #46 on: June 09, 2012, 01:38:37 AM »
I will have to reply on many things when I do mine (since Donny is the hottest guy for me this year, and was THE most popular guy among all my gay and girl friends at my esc party...)

I'm of course looking forward to your responses as usual Morgan. But, please not about Donny.  :-[ I know that I'm in the minority about him and I wish him all the best as long as he doesn't try ESC once again.

By the way in our party he wasn't that popular. Pasha, Roman, Zeljko, Ott all were much more talked about. Maybe a cultural thing, I don't know. :scratch:

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42209#msg42209

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #47 on: June 09, 2012, 01:43:07 AM »
And today #20 to #11:

20. MOLDOVA: Although I enjoyed the rather simplistic but quite catchy melody instantly for a long time I tried to maintain a distance towards this song just because of the über-silly lyrics. However the live performance on the semi final night convinced me that this was by far the most fun entry this year. This time I’ll start with choreography because I think that’s the main selling point of this particular entry. Moldova seems to be specialized in putting on madcap, vibrant, joyful shows for their entries and I think this one might have perfected the formula. It’s zany enough to be entertaining but without going totally overboard and even more importantly staging has an overall smooth, clean quality about it which is fairly rare for this type of stuff on ESC. The soloist, the dancers and the backing singers they all work perfectly well with each other, seem like they’re having the time of their lives and that pure joy lifts the performance up significantly. While the song is still relatively low in my list the Moldovan team as a whole is among my absolute favorites this year. And as for Pasha himself, while he’s not among the most impressive vocalists of the competition if you listen closely he does a more than adequate job with his silly but cute song, especially considering that he’s moving a lot on the stage. Even though I’m not exactly a fan of his outfit (the rest of the team is very well dressed for the nature of performance) he also looks very good. In my experience resembling Colin Farrell never hurts anyone in that department. All in all this may be lacking the wow factor of great Nelly Ciobanu’s wonderful “Hora din Moldova” musically speaking but it’s an almost similarly energetic, crisp and well executed entry from them. (63/100) (2/8) (673/1280)

19. AZERBAIJAN: I’d better say this up front: I have serious issues with Azerbaijan. Actually ever since they debuted I’ve understood much better how most Western European countries must be feeling about diaspora votes. It’s really frustrating to know that no matter how many times you vote for your favorite song your country’s top marks will go to the same place at the end. With the current fifty-fifty system our case is even worse then diaspora cases because our juries seem to follow the televoters’ path religiously (no pun intended). I swear I wouldn’t whine like this if Azerbaijan bothered to send at least occasionally something with real Azeri culture in it, because I practically adore the Azeri folk songs. But instead of that they prefer sending plastic pop ballads, penned by hired Swedish songwriters and this way or that way they managed to end up in top five. Getting all this out of my chest I should add that I find this year’s entry much better than the last year’s winner. Sure, it’s still highly unoriginal, blatantly derivative and only marginally more soulful than its two predecessors. However Sabina’s love performance was enough to elevate it from the Safura and Ell/Nikki ground. In the studio version I admired her vocal abilities but felt that she overplayed her hand considering the material she had to deal with. Then on the final night apart from the inexplicably too low opening she was almost pitch perfect. Too bad for her that it was a year full of strong vocalists belting out much complex ballads and her strong performance has gone mostly unnoticed. Well except for juries and televoters of course! As this is easily one of the worst and most shamelessly derivative songs of the final night with an admittedly very good but far from being the very best performance I still find it remarkably overrated. I might have been fine with 9th or 10th position but the second best ballad of the year? Sure it was not. By the way I personally find her “gimmicky” dress very effective in terms of both elegance and memorability. As for the seemingly last minute inclusion of Qasimov, well truthfully it didn’t do much for me either positively or negatively but let’s hope that this marks a beginning to have some local sounds in Azerbaijani entries from now on. (64/100) (2/5) (653/1280)

18. BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA: If you look at the last bracket you’ll see that from this point on the entries are in the upper half of my all time chart. I didn’t plan this specifically but it’s a very nice coincidence, because to me ESC 12 has been for a long time now “the 18 songs and the others”. These 18 entries stood out very early and they remained there throughout the entire season. First out of the gate among them is lovely Maya Sar. Her song left a quite strong first impression on me but from then on constantly dropped down in my rankings. The quiet melancholy of the melody turned into the boredom very quickly. Though it’s still a fine song to my ears, except for the brief but haunting instrumental break there’s nothing in this song to make it worthwhile in long term. Her live performance didn’t help it either. First of all she was horribly, awfully, hideously dressed and even though the fashion aspect is always at best secondary to me, horrendousness of this frock was at the point of distracting from the performance, especially because it was a painfully static one. Maybe without the piano or maybe with some backing musicians to create a certain mood it could have definitely been improved. But aside from the utterly low-key song itself, the main problem would always be Maya herself. Because as lovely as she looks, she doesn’t have either the stage presence or the singing abilities of a bona-fide star. She’s a very proper vocalist but I guess her future will be brighter as a songwriter than as a performer. While I can’t complain about the final result of this entry in the final, at the semi finals stage if an Ex-Yugo ballad should have failed that should have been this one over Croatia and Slovenia, but of course I’d have preferred all five of them to qualify for the final. (66/100) (7/18) (591/1280)

17. FINLAND: Pretty much on the same level as Bosnia, in fact if I was ranking only the studio versions I would probably swap their places. This is also a very tender, soft and lovely ballad which is unluckily too low-key for a televised song contest. However what gave the edge to this over the previous entry for me was Pernilla’s live performance. Admittedly she didn’t exactly flame up the stage with star quality either, but I found the commitment I missed at Maya in Pernilla’s singing. She was simply more believable and I think this has at least partially got something to do with the outfits. One other aspect I personally enjoyed in this entry was the language. I’ve simply forgotten how beautiful Swedish can sound especially in this type of calm and tender ballads. All in all this entry definitely deserved to qualify easily in that weak semi final, but considering that on the final night it would certainly be an uphill battle for Pernilla to get out of bottom five, maybe this is a better outcome. After all this totally depends on how you define “the success” at the ESC these days. But one way or another, this has been a maybe unsuccessful but undoubtedly dignified and courageous attempt from Finland. (66/100) (17/46) (582/1280)

16. DENMARK: I had very mixed feelings towards this one at the first impression. The song sounded interesting at least partially and the chorus was instantly catchy. However the performer felt all wrong both musically and visually. Her nasal voice and whiny singing was a complete turn off to me and her ugly hat and epaulets didn’t help much either. But in time the studio version started to grow on me. Now I like the song itself quite a lot and even her singing doesn’t bother me that much as long as I don’t have to see her. On the semi final night however, all my initial concerns about the performer killing the song came back. Her live singing is definitely much weaker (going obviously out of tune at times) and when that’s combined with her painful-to-look-at styling musicals merits of the song couldn’t really come across. Even in a weak semi, I thought she might have been in trouble. Although my last minute concern wasn’t justified that night in the final things got even worse. Her singing was even more dreadful this time around and while you might think that it would be good for a mid-tempo ballad to come between two of the most up-tempo songs of the night, she failed to make the smallest impact. That’s why the disappointing bottom five result was not exactly a surprise to me but I still think this song deserved better. I think it has the potential to be a big hit in the right hands. In my head Loreen covers this one and believe it or not the result is fantastic! After all, the Eurovision Song Contest was never really a “song” contest and in this modern day and age with all those non-musical factors coming in the play the “singer” still counts very much and thank heavens for that. (67/100) (19/41) (535/1280)

15. UNITED KINGDOM: Well, the man is a living legend, there’s no doubt about that and as a lifelong ESC fan I’m still glad that he participated even if for almost all concerned parties this turned out to be the worst decision UK had at least since endorsing Bush in Iraq. Of course with the announcement of his name I was as flabbergasted as the next guy. Then the song was released in the studio version and I immediately loved it. A simple but very well built ballad with very, very good lyrics and the Hump was just belting it out as we knew he used to do. It was simply the best British entry in a full decade. However I found it suspicious that until the rehearsals started there was not one single live rendition video and the cynical in me wasn’t ready to accept that a 76 year-old can sing this fairly difficult song flawlessly in live until personally witnessing it. The first rehearsal reports were verifying my doubts and the jury rehearsal was pretty much disastrous. However on the final night the Hump gave a perfectly acceptable performance vocally speaking. In fact he was a bit too cautious with his vocal technique that he neglected to sing that heartfelt song with enough emotion, passion and conviction. It’s not really a mistake a seasoned professional like him would do but it still felt that this performance should have been saved for the jury rehearsal and on the big night he should have let himself loose with the vocals and tried to live the emotions of the song to the hilt. His brief interview with Nargiz during a break led us to believe that he might have some hearing problems (not uncommon for his age), so one wonders: Did he really know what a jury rehearsal meant in this contest? Even with a rather dull and soulless but vocally fine performance this song should have made the top ten on the night, so it’s my official candidate for the “most underrated in the final” title and it’s still my highest rated British entry since Jessica Garlick. By the way there were rumors that BBC’s first choice for this year was Shirley Bassey but she couldn’t accept it because of health problems. Boy, if that’s true I feel relieved, because Engelbert being underrated might be saddening but my very favorite living vocalist (sorry Barbra!) being humiliated in my favorite event, now my tired heart couldn’t have possibly handled that. (69/100) (26/55) (491/1280)

14. MACEDONIA: Let’s talk about mixed feelings again. I first got to know Kaliopi with Samo ti like most Eurofans. As in those days we didn’t have a way to access to the non-qualified entries it was not in 1996 but in 2001. I immediately liked that song and wished it would have qualified over some others such as Finland, Spain, Malta, etc. The singer with a strange, almost unique voice was very promising and I really wanted her to perform on the ESC stage. Well this year my wish finally came true, however the song announcement turned out to be a bit of a disappointment for me. While I didn’t follow Kaliopi’s career very closely, I’d heard more than a few songs by her and more or less liked every single one of them. I still think this one might be the weakest song I’ve heard so far from her. Not that it’s a bad song and I particularly like its mood swings from the calm beginning to the infamous “cat scream”. But it just lacks the power in its melody and the arrangements sound a bit dated especially with the electro-guitars towards the end. On the other hand Kaliopi is that kind of a performer who could elevate almost any material and she does it perfectly in the studio and even better in the live performance. Right at this point I must say that I find Kaliopi’s vocals to be overrated among fans. Especially in the semi her voice sounded rather strained, she had some minor diaphragm problems and she obviously had difficulties in some of the higher registers (scream was perfect though). Not that those overshadowed the sheer power, emotional strength and utter professionalism of the whole performance which was lifted above mostly by the impeccable stage presence than anything else. For three minutes she dominated that stage better than any of her rivals. My only point is vocally it was far from a perfect performance. As I wrote somewhere in another thread, her behavior during the winners’ conference almost turned me against her completely though. Trying to hijack a conference for no less than 10 winners, desperately attempting to steal Loreen’s thunder and only marginally succeeding it, all these make a very divaish attitude which could be seen as a part of her charm and I can understand that. But for this fan at least it didn’t work at all, because I prefer my divas to act humble even when it’s just an act. There are much more subtle ways to gain the attention which I consider “classier”. Having said all of that, I must admit that I forgot all about it during her final performance. She’s clearly born to be on the stage and when the center of the attention was given to her without the need of stealing it she simply makes wonders. This time around her voice was less strained and even though there were still some technical problems with the vocals her unmatched passion more than made up for it. She’s definitely a great vocalist, whose prime’s obviously behind her now (by the way the Greek girl may be the prettiest but at 45 Kaliopi is the most beautiful of all 2012 ladies in my eyes), but unlike the Hump she made the right choice and attacked her rather dull song without any overly technical concerns. That’s why I rank her above him, because song wise it would have been the other way around. Similarly it’s just above Goceva’s second attempt in my Macedonian chart on the merit of performance, not exactly the song. (69/100) (1/12) (490/1280)

13. CROATIA: I have a feeling that Nina Badric might be the most underappreciated singer of the year. Recently I’ve read somewhere that Loreen once said Nina was the best vocalist of ESC ’12. Of course we can’t know if it’s true or she just wanted to play it safe by naming somebody who’s not in the final, nevertheless reading that made me smile. Not because I agree with the statement but I guess this was the first time this ESC season I saw Nina’s name in a sentence with a superlative in it. Maybe blame is partly her own, she should have chosen something more instant, with a wider appeal to submit to the contest (but I also have to admit that a part of me admires her for this brave decision), or maybe it was just an unlucky year for her with almost Ex-Yugos sending strong ballads from established artists. At the end no matter how much I appreciate the song itself I never expected her to be able get out of that “semi of death”. While the song was good enough and her vocals were undeniably superb the staging and overall performance left much to be desired. Her outfit was simply awful by any regard and the choreography with the cloth made little to no sense. I’m still sad that this beautiful ballad with a minimalistic melody, very fine lyrics and strong arrangements and its wonderfully talented author/performer was denied a ticket to the final, it was not a huge shock and I’m still holding onto the belief that this entry will age gracefully among fans. And I hope that Nina comes back some day with a more competitive song and a better conceived performance. I also hope that Croatia which is among my favorite ESC countries can return to the finals soon. (72/100) (10/20) (394/1280)

12. SLOVENIA: Third Yugo ballad in a row! And the second most underrated entry of the year as a whole (the first one will show up in top three). OK, what went wrong here? Admittedly the outfits were overly done, pompous and garish but I can’t bring myself to believe that this was the reason for their doom. Certainly if Bosnia got away with something even more overly done, pompous and garish this just cannot be the only reason. So the trouble was vocals? That’s a little more convincing I guess. The backing singer who opened the song was nearly atrocious. I think she was a wrong choice for that from the very beginning because even in studio she sounds rather off. As for Eva, admittedly she was not perfect, but it was hardly a disastrous vocal performance. The main problem was her inexperience which sadly showed itself more than a couple of times during the song. It’s really a pity though, because her first rendition of this that I saw (I’m not sure if it was a competitive performance or a reprise) was pretty awesome. She was oozing confidence and strength beyond her years and the entry left a very strong first impression on me. Studio version came as a mild disappointment with both her singing less powerful and the song itself sounding more clichéd, but I hoped she would rise to the occasion again when the live performance time arrived. Sadly that didn’t happen and her live performance on the semi final night was nothing more than adequate. After all, the problem must have been the song. I thought this would be the most familiar sounding of this year’s Ex-Yugo ballads to the Western ears, but probably it just felt tired and unexciting. Molitva comparisons were of course inevitable and that was a battle Verjamem just couldn’t win. However I still think that in its own way this ballad is also special and should have been in the final over at least over Lithuania, Malta, Norway and Bosnia Herzegovina. Macedonia is debatable. (73/100) (6/18) (377/1280)

11. NETHERLANDS: After all is said and done, they are out final once again. Even though the performance didn’t fully deserve to get through, it’s still such a shame for both the song and the country. I think this song is the biggest grower of this edition. It started at #17 in my first ranking and went up to #8 before the live performance. It’s a well-known and very logical fact that being a grower is not exactly the best asset a song could have to succeed in a contest where almost everything depends on the first impression. And for that impression, I’m still convinced that the headdress didn’t particularly work. I can understand that this is Joan’s own special way to express herself as an artist and this is definitely something to be respected. But results wise I’m pretty sure that it did more harm than good. I know from my experience that the song started to grow on me when I first listened to it without visuals. Of course Joan is not exactly a great live singer and that might very well be a factor too. Aside from her weak vocals the staging was rather poor too so when the song was over I was pretty sure that the Netherlands were doomed to stay in the semi one more year. I still think this is a shame though, because after you get to know all the songs well enough this one remains as one of the best compositions with quite good, genuine, heartfelt lyrics too. In the studio I really enjoy her singing as well. Apart from the song, I also believe that Joan is one of the most exciting personalities in this year’s contest and wish her a fruitful, long career. I hope she also improves her live singing because for the moment this is the only thing hindering her status as a promising young artist. She definitely has the soul of a real musician as opposed to most ESC songstresses of her age this or any year. (73/100) (18/54) (362/1280)



Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42210#msg42210

Offline rapsodia

  • Escvibes Team
  • *
  • Posts: 679
  • Country: tr
  • Gender: Male
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #48 on: June 09, 2012, 01:45:11 AM »
And that leaves for Top Ten:

Albania
Estonia
Iceland
Israel
Italy
Portugal
Serbia
Spain
Sweden
Turkey

So we're wrapping this up tomorrow night!

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42211#msg42211

Offline Martial

  • Escvibes Friend
  • *
  • Posts: 3174
  • Country: fr
  • Blondie's Lover
Re: YOUR RANKING OF THE SONGS 2012
« Reply #49 on: June 09, 2012, 03:47:14 AM »
we have 8 songs in common in the top 10, the two you knocked out are in your top 20 and the two you have that I don't are my 18th and 22nd... it's starting to get spooky how well we agree from now on, except for my 27th and 26th in your top 20 which I think you overrate, this is almost the perfectest ranking i've seen this year (in terms only on how much you agree with me) with the one exception of Togravus who is just basically a second me... thanks again for the long explanations and hoping very much to see we share the same winner... let me guess your top 3: Serbia, Albania and Iceland?

Linkback: http://www.escvibes.com/index.php?topic=1679.msg42212#msg42212