Romania lovely how they go 110% into the novelty route
Until I saw the video of him showing us his stage clothes I thought he had done the buttons up wrong
As if you would criticise anything they do
if it would've been that bland staging from their National final, i would really disliked it
i quite like a over the top staging for a fun/novelty song
2nd rehearsals start today with actual camera tv view:
Sweden (full rehearsal non tv here)
Georgia (full rehearsal non tv here)
Albania (full rehearsal non tv here)
Australia (full rehearsal non tv here)
Belgium (full rehearsal non tv here)
Montenegro (full rehearsal non tv here)
Finland (full rehearsal non tv here)
Azerbaijan (full rehearsal non tv here)
Portugal (full rehearsal non tv here)
Greece (full rehearsal non tv here)
Poland (full rehearsal non tv here)
Moldova (full rehearsal non tv here)
Iceland (full rehearsal non tv here)
Czech Republic (full rehearsal non tv here)
Cyprus (full rehearsal non tv here)
That is it for today.
Sweden: Polished to the max like in the nf performance, his voice doesn't seem right today but then again he was the first to sing at 8am.
Georgia: The song itself was already bad the staging is not doing anything for the song.
Albania: She can sing, but she has a crappy song nothing to be done regarding that.
Australia: That staging still looks horrible to me, apart from that voice wise ok but certainly not great.
Belgium: Poor girl she can't sing at all she missed pretty much all the notes and looks like she is about to burst into tears.
Finland: If this doesn't quality it's a crime. Vocally good simple staging and good backdrop.
Azerbaijan: Good vocally and I still don't get what is going on in the stage, no idea why the ladder or the horse head, besides that good.
Portugal: Hard to judge when it isn't the actual singer singing it. Not much to add besides the fact the backdrop is nice and that there is no over the top staging which is perfect as the song needed something simple.
Greece: I see she went for the Ruth Lorenzo look with the wet hair and the rain falling. Silly. Vocally good. The ballet/weird dancers really are unnecessary. Cheesy end with the magic trick and the heart shaped arms.
Poland: And we have a wind machine! Nice backdrop (apart fro the random animals that show up that don't really have anything to do with the song) and her voice is alright too, I could do without the violin man though. I hope she fixes the dress as she is showing a bit too much (http://i.imgur.com/ohleMth.png)
Moldova: Pretty much of expected and given the amount of ballads and bad performed uptempo songs in the semi this should qualify unf.
Iceland: She is wearing her Eurovision dress and I like it, good thing she got rid of the hair bums. She is good vocally and I like the wind machine effect. Stage and presence are weak though.
Czech Republic: Not sure what she is wearing, she is good vocally but the song doesn't go anywhere and the fact they used the music video as the backdrop shows how unoriginal they are. Nothing else to add as nothing else is happening.
Cyprus: It's all about the staging in here. If they pull the staging live they could qualify. The song itself isn't bad it just happened to be forgettable so if the staging works it might surprise. He is not singing bad either.
Wtf, She can't sing. I think it was a lot better. The fact She looked like She was Going to cry is part of the act.
Well If that is singing I might send my cat to Eurovision that first note on the esc.tv official video is painful. Plus it's just an opinion and everyone is allowed one.
As we finally get more content to judge from, I'm going to weigh in with my opinions that are surely no less professional than those of the jury members.
Sweden: From the camera angles we know it's the same as the melfest performance but that's okay. It's slick and works perfecly fine, but it could be a bit less sleazy. We've heard better from him, but he certainly wasn't bad.
Georgia: It's trying to be anthemic but you do need an anthemic song for that. Staging and camera angles are decent imo, I prefer it over the studio version which was a bit too smoothed out.
Albania: Well, at least the background is actually moving this time. She can hold a tune but the song and staging aren't doing it for me.
Australia: The background isn't working and just walking during the chorus doesn't make sense (Austria did it better and so does Sweden).
Belgium: She is improving but the music is overpowering her voice. She's standing still enough to have a projection dress, perhaps a turn or two would help it. I hope she'll turn it out, as the song itself is nice.
Montenegro: He almost whispered at the start. It certainly is a lot, so he doesn't look very lost on the stage. The braid-choreography is...unique. At least he's having fun.
Finland: Vocals are on point, and staging suits the song well. They'll have a chance if they sound like this on the semi.
Azerbaijan: The staging and performance has some interesting elements and also some odd choices. She sounded fine, a little polishing on the backings and it'll be good to go.
Portugal: We know what Salvador is like live. I'm glad Portugal kept it simple, allowing the viewers to focus on the song.
Greece: The staging doesn't make any sense for the new version, and apparently rain also falls from below in Kiev. Her first rehearsal was rough and her second started out better but her ability to hold a note was gone (maybe it washed away with the rain falling from above and from below)
Poland: I thought the national final background (if they cut out the parts showing her face) was much more original than a safe blue with some stars background. She can sing, but she doesn't need to push her voice so much. Otherwise fine.
Moldova: I doubt this is a hard song to pull off but some singers would still bomb it, so hooray on decent vocals. It's very televote era eurovision style with bouquet microphones weird dancing and a costume change, but I'm kind of ready for it (even though I still don't like the song), it's done well and it's fun.
Iceland: I found everything good, but it didn't wow me in any way. I expected a bit more from someone as experienced as her.
Czechia: Boring boring boring. What can I say, it's a boring song sung decently with a crappy outfit and a weird borderline creepy background.
Cyprus: He can't stand on one leg and that's half of the choreography. Vocally decent. I feel like some staging elements are not the most original (this seems a bit like Belgium 2015 and has some Russia 2016 elements), but it might be enough to get by.
First, everything from yesterday:
San Marino: Vocally quite decent. In the rehearsal room, Valentina showed she can do this. Jimmie is always good. The song is pretty much a no hoper, but the fun this just brings across might mean trouble for the songs around it (Ireland, I'm mostly talking to you).
Norway: Very little to say. Quite similar to the NF staging. I'm curious about the little voice tuner they are apparently using.
Switzerland: What is it with acts using a hidden backing vocal doing the main parts of a chorus? Annoys me endlessly. If she, in that dress, needs to walk down those stairs, I foresee trouble on the horizon. The staging is a mess. Too simple and too complicated at the same time. This is slipping down the list of likely qualifiers. Guess the Swiss are out.
Belarus: Belarus got it right. They didn't overcomplicate this and let the song speak for itself. There's enough energy there, the props are limited and that's just what they need.
Croatia: I'm surprised he manages to pull this off vocally. The staging works, backing vocals there, an opera back up too. Happy, cheerful background there too. I'm going to be surprised if this fails to qualify.
Bulgaria: If you're 16 and alone on that stage, with quite a tough song to sing, you deserve compliments if you do it like this. Bulgaria want to challenge Italy with this. I'm not sure they'll manage that, but this will be a solid top 10 - or more. Vocally he's perfect, the staging should be good with the camera angles.
Lithuania: 11 seconds I lasted. Horrifyingly bad as a song, staging doesn't even matter.
Estonia: Laura is a problem here. She has her audio piece attached to her... arm? Looks incredibly weird. Vocally she's also not quite there. The black and white is a good idea and I'm not too unhappy with what they're doing. It could however easily miss out.
Israel: Not a fan of him, his voice or his song. He misses quite a few notes... everywhere. As it stands, the only thing that could save this is the fact that's not a ballad and closing the show, but damn, this was bad.
HFc on your premature ejaculation problem
Sweden: Looking pretty identical to the Melodifestivalen performance. Vocally indeed not quite there in the early morning, but oh well. It still looks way too slick and choreographed for me. He's not quite the natural performer either.
Georgia: She sings it well, sure. But without the 'news clips' in the background, this lacks any sort of relevance. Seems dead in the water for me, unless juries want her voice in the final.
Albania: There's no sympathy whatsoever in this girl. The stage is quite apocalyptic and then she's dressed in... white with silver glitters and white thingies? It all seems so out of place, that nothing really matters anymore. What a letdown.
Australia: What's the point of him walking about there? He doesn't even interact with the camera. He sings it decently, but Australia haven't found any sort of magic key with the performance. I expect it to qualify, but to drown in the final.
Belgium: Christ above. She has missed every single note in that performance. It's extremely painful. She looks like a forced bride, about to cry. And if that's the idea of the performance, then the entire idea is just way off. Now looking like a non-qualifier, even. The song could still bring them to the final, but it certainly won't be thanks to Blandche.
Montenegro: Now it doesn't even seem that bad right after Belgium. It's way over the top and it's a terrible, terrible song, but he doesn't seem to take himself too seriously. And that could bring votes, sadly.
Finland: I'm no fan of the song or her voice, but it's well performed. Packed with emotion, staging is simple, yet effective. Starting to look like a qualifier, whereas I thought it'd be out early on.
Azerbaijan: I'm getting Russia 2016 vibes. The staging seems to work, but the camera angles are just not right for me. Colour wise it's a bit off too, with the silver/grey/black tones everywhere. Vocally she's fine and I expect this to do really well on Saturday. Not quite a winner though.
Portugal: That's how you do staging. The background is perfect, the use of the satellite stage is fantastic. I'm becoming a fan of Luísa too, she's great. Let's see how this looks with Salvador.
Greece: She looks good. And that's where the positive sides stop, really. She also seemed to miss the big notes in a few of her runthroughs. Rain falls from below, as Dennis says. Ridiculous. Easy qualifier, I'm still thinking.
Poland: Not much to say. She does this really well vocally. The dress is not a good idea, but I expect changes there after that nipple slip Júlio pointed out. It looks good on stage, with the simple background and the violin player. Camera angles changed my mind about this. I imagine this will qualify.
Moldova: Vocally perfect and the staging works well enough. It all looks well thought of. Song is a breath of fresh air, which is definitely going to help it. Probably a qualifier.
Iceland: The outfit disturbed me less than I thought it would. She looks quite normal. And that's its problem at the same time. It's just too normal, too average, too 'just there'. I still hope it can take advantage of many others failing to get a grip.
Czech Republic: She is good. The song is really subtle and so is the staging. It's just a shame her outfit is... golden tinfoil. Not a whole lot is happening, so this might finish last (sadly).
Cyprus: His singing is better than I expected. The wide camera shots are out of place. It would be better to keep this focussed on the stage. The choreography is good enough. I expect this to qualify if they change the cameras a little.
I shall chip in with my pertinent and erudite comments:
Much the same as ever
Another one who looks like she’s about to be whisked off into space. (I still don’t mind the song and think her voice is a million times better than Lindita’s howling.)
Wtf is she wearing? Is there actually anyone in Albania who can sing?
Beam me up, Scotty. Plus this is dead boring.
At least she is not standing like a statue now but she moves by numbers. Everything is so stilted and I wouldn’t mind betting when we can see her face in close up we’ll see how much she’s having to concentrate. It’s quite embarrassing…poor girl.
Can’t hear him. Is this the plan?
She also appears to be flailing around under a spaceship, but one that goes underwater. She looks to have dyed her hair a lttle less white, which has to be good.
Can’t hear her in the verses either.
This is just lovely. The hand movements are so natural (and they’re probably not even hers; they’re probably his). Watch and learn, Blanche
Oh dear. Vocally good? Really?
She gives me the impression that she is putting her heart and soul into this to lift it, but in reality it’s in need of a crane.
Immeasurably better than Monday. They are certainly a very slick outfit.
They’ll have to be careful of the camera angles with that costume. Song is still horrible.
Very in and out. (Oh actually it might not be that bad; I’ve just discoverd I had 2 videos playing ) Surely she isn’t actually going to wear that.
They really need to practise the ‘dance’.
Here are my thoughts:
Sweden - Polished, slick performance and vocally, about the same as ever. They know what they want to do with this song and they'll be easily sailing into the final with what they've got (albeit what they've got does not appeal to me as it comes across as sleazy) - I do wonder if Robin knows how stilted he comes across, though.
Georgia - I'm feeling more and more confident that out of the various ballads and pseudo-ballads we've got dominating the first half, this is one that'll qualify. The stage is huge but she can command it much better than some of the other artists we've talked about coming up - vocals are good.
Australia - Oh dear. Isaiah looks lost on that stage and is stuffed between two powerhouse, diva vocals. The background really does nothing for the song and this strange turntable strolling isn't going to do them much favours, either. Underwhelming is the word that comes to mind and Australia could squeak past but I'm much less confident in it being a sure qualifier.
Albania - Not much else to be said about this, Lindita shrieks her 'Mother Nature'-esque ballad for a solid three minutes but isn't giving us as much charisma as Tamara did, earlier. Quite a stagnant background and very stiff backing singers for something that wants to bring us drama, though. I don't think this will qualify.
Belgium - Talk about looking terrified; I feel as if Belgium have made the wrong decision when it comes to staging this by far when they could've went the easy route. Darken the stage, soften the lights with some warm whites and have a projection wall behind her. I feel this will still qualify but it's not near the top - it's in the danger zone, like she says in the lyrics.
Montenegro - I don't have much to say other than what Julio said above: Mess. He calls it performance art and building a character but I see a desperate man trying to be some sort of groundbreaking performer. The novelty sheen has worn off and Moldova does it much better.
Finland - My worries have melted away as Finland saves the day with a classy, beautiful performance. I still doubt that this will qualify and I feel I could be shouting 'FIX' at the television on Tuesday but please, if there's any justice, this needs to qualify. The softer vocals work better and transplanting the staging from the national to the big stage was the best idea they've had.
Azerbaijan - I still find the vocal mixing on this a little strange, her voice sounds wafer thin on the high notes and she has decided to look quite harsh and angry which I guess, goes with her anger at the horseman on the ladder. Chic and just a bit creepy - it'll qualify.
Portugal - Going from one of the more out-there performances, we've got a soft song that harks back to the glory days of early Eurovision - and what hasn't been said about this? It's beautiful, the backdrop is simple and elegant and I just really hope this can qualify for both Portugal's benefit and my benefit because well, it's grown on me a lot.
Greece - They've really thrown everything and the kitchen sink at this, haven't they? They have elevated what is, truthfully, a cliche and generic song into something that is still cliche and generic but has somewhat of a more redeeming quality. I can't put my finger on it but vocally, she's sound and this will qualify.
Poland - While we always say that diaspora helps Poland's chances, this struck me as one of the strongest contenders of the day and really, I didn't see myself saying that. The stage doesn't feel too empty and there's enough here to provide substance. She says she's singing the song for animals which is, erm, interesting. I'd say this is qualifying and in good contention of the top 5 of the semi, too.
Moldova - I will never get this song and frankly, I don't think I need to. When they could've gone for something far too bright, far too campy - they've gone for a polished performance with what they know about Eurovision and honestly, it does work. I wonder if it'll qualify or will juries not see the fun in this. Either way, I underestimated them.
Iceland - After a fun performance like Moldova, I don't think this is what we need. I've always liked Paper and what it stands for, the difficulties you face if you suffer from anxiety, etc. Svala herself suffers from it but she's coming across too severe and strong for a vulnerable, sympathetic song. Boring stage, vocally sound but just too blasé to qualify. I even think this might be bottom three.
Czech Republic - Going from cold to warm, this envelops you like a warm, toasty cinnamon bun and yet, I still think this song is horribly dull. She's really trying to give us what she's selling but I'm not sure I want it. I think this will languish in the semi finals but the juries might give her some nice points. Not sure what gold foil and purple has to do with it, though.
Cyprus - I thought this looked quite awkward when I saw it the first time around but they're trying to do what they can. He's vocally better than I expected but even with having dancers, there's a weird sense of the stage swallowing up the performance. White and black staging was a bit too predictable for my liking, I would've liked something more out there. This could qualify or it might surprise and come 11th/12th.
Serbia, i really hate this generic pop crap, so dull and bland i hope it doesn't qualify
Another day of rehearsals:
Armenia (full rehearsal non tv here)
Slovenia (full rehearsal non tv here)
Latvia (full rehearsal non tv here)
Serbia (full rehearsal non tv here)
Austria (full rehearsal non tv here)
FYR Macedonia (full rehearsal non tv here)
Malta (full rehearsal non tv here)
Romania (full rehearsal non tv here)
Armenia: I really like the song and she is great live, that said i was expecting more from the staging of this.
Slovenia: Vocally good but not as good as some of his other performances, staging is a bit simple and the song sadly doesn't help on this new version. I also dislike the fact he unbuttons the jacket a point of the song just to show off, doesn't go with the song at all.
Latvia: They got the best possible position in the semi final but I'm not sure if that will be enough. The staging and performance is aggressive and I'm not sure that will come across to televote or the juries and the song itself is quite repetitive. Her voice was not good this time around either (good thing they have the backing singers).
Serbia: Oh god. This sounds horrible. Her voice is just bad, not even the backing singers are able to cover for it. The staging is also bad nothing goes on in there to bring it up and make up for the song I honestly can't see this qualifying.
Austria: They say spot 2 is bad, well, in this case I think it will favour Austria. Stuck in between 2 dance songs (Serbia and Macedonia) who don't really have nothing going on on the stage and where the vocals are a mess this will sound fresh. He is good vocally and the staging is also clever. This should qualify.
Macedonia: Another Belgium/Serbia case. Vocally not good (still better than Belgium/Serbia) a very poor staging where she is alone trying to fill a way to big stage. The backdrop doesn't really work and I was hoping they would do more than what they come up with. The dance choreography is a bit of a letdown as well. Should still borderline qualify but I wouldn't be surprised if it doesn't.
Malta: Vocally okay she doesn't do much on the stage but then again what could she do with a song like the one she has? The creepiest backdrop of the year and the song goes nowhere.
Romania: I never liked the song, they sing as you would expect them to do. The staging however they put it on an extreme childish way. They are obviously going for the kid/teen vote too bad for them the majority of the jury is 50+. It will qualify of course but I really dislike all of this silliness they came up with.
Italy: the big favourite to win. The snippet is short and hard to judge apart from the fact that I don't like how they added the backing singers on the stage (who are not in sync with the dance) and that the stage is too dark and the song needs something more colourful. From what I read from people in there they liked the singer and the song but the staging isn't clicking. They say (as i mentioned) it's too dark and black to the point you can barely notice the gorilla and the backdrop with the gorilla dancing is not in sync with them on the stage. They also mentioned the use of too many wide shots for the camera that don't work with the song, they go wide shot when they start to dance making it miss the dance moves just as well when the gorilla enters which due to the dark background makes it seem there is no gorilla. Overall it should still win but they need to work a lot on that staging.
Spain: Well then what to say about this. The backdrop is related to summer and beach which was expected there isn't anything going on on the stage and he sings as expected from the national final, I don't think this will end up last but it should be close to it.
Ukraine: The backing singer is painfully out of tune. The singer sings it well however I don't like the staging I wish they had kept it on the same way as the national final as that at least made sense with the song title and lyrics. The head on the backdrop is scary.
Germany: While I don't think Spain will get the toilet I think this could just as well get it if not it will be close. The stage looks empty and the backdrop isn't very appealing. Her voice seems reasonably okay compared to many other of her live versions.
UK: Voice wise on point which was expected, and a simple, yet very suitable, clever staging.
France: She misses some of the notes in the chorus which isn't good and she looks a bit lost in the stage. I still don't like this new version of the song, and that backdrop is a bit weird, I know it fits the song given that it's Paris but surely they could come up with a better view that something that looks like has been taking out of google maps?
Alright todays rehearsals:
Armenia: Some interesting hand-choreography during the instrumental bits but it appears to work. She sounded nice. Camera angles make this work quite well.
Slovenia: He sounded nice but I still don't like the song. The staging is alright. I hope the unbuttoning of the jacket is part of the choreography, there a people changing into a wedding dress so opening a jacket is not really giving me much.
Latvia: She's trying to be edgy clearly, at least she sounds better than in the national final. I think the screens are a smart choice to give this a more closed local band type of feel.
Serbia: Still a mess. Also turning away from the camera when you're still alone on stage and there's nothing happening seems like a bad choice. I hope it can improve, but I have my doubts.
Austria: He's working every bit of the stage, he comes across as likeable and he seems to be enjoying his time on the stage. He missed one moment but that was just a small timing mistake that happened once. I hope it does well, because it's a breathe of fresh air.
Macedonia: This was...still a bit rough, albeit stronger than the first rehearsal. Still a lot of work to do for Macedonia. I like the song so I hope it comes across the way it does in studio.
Malta: Oh look it's mega Claudia eating normal Claudia. Uninspired staging for an uninspired song, blurgh. At least she can sing live.
Romania: The staging is cheap and a mess. They try to go for fun-appeal but it's not working. They choreography is silly too. The cannons don't make sense.
don't take romania's song too serious, Ilinca and Alex want to make us happy
and this second rehearsal is vocally better than the first rehearsal
Armenia: I like the song a lot and vocally she's good too. In terms of facial expressions and choreography, I'm sort of disappointed. This lacked the power from the video. Bit of a missed chance here, even though it will still do really well.
Slovenia: The revamp has killed this. He doesn't come across as the most likeable character either. I think he had a little mistake in the lyrics there, but that's no reason to worry. Somehow I fail to see who will pick up the phone for this. Not a qualifier, I'm fairly sure.
Latvia: It's a daring attempt and with a semifinal audience, that might just pay off to make them qualify. It's very in your face, but that also makes it memorable. This is on the edge of qualifying. Glad they solved the... unfortunate image in the background.
Serbia: Based on the song (easily accessible English pop) and the fact that it's Serbia, I'm not ruling this out. Had this been the Czech Republic or Cyprus, I'd have discarded it after that performance. She's terrible, her backing is even worse and her outfit... Nope.
Austria: Best rehearsal of the day. He was spot on vocally and it looks perfect on stage. It's dreamy, it's sugary, but it needs that. After Serbia's mess, already a gigantic breath of fresh air and I'm guessing a good contender for Saturday's top 10.
Macedonia: They've turned down her mic even more. All in all, I'm quite happy. I went from being quite sure that this wouldn't make it after rehearsal #1 to thinking it should probably make it quite easily now. Yes, the staging is bad with that enormous stage being filmed in wide shots, but many, many countries suffer from that.
Malta: The song is inoffensively bland. I don't mind that, especially not with the vocals. But this is as dead in the water as you can get. They put no effort in this whatsoever. Guess Ira emptied the budget last year.
Romania: I hate this now. I really do. I like the yodel, but... no. Silver glittery canons? Jumping bright letters in the background? Extremely childish. This is the song broadcasters will use if they want to show how ridiculous the contest is. Done with this. Sadly, this will do well.
Italy: Seems they lived up to expectations, but the snippet doesn't say much. Some countries have crucial parts of their choreography (Azerbaijan, Macedonia, Italy) and the camera doesn't quite manage to catch those. I can only pray that they'll manage to capture the dance on stage and cut away properly for the gorilla entrance. Most likely a runaway winner...?
Espain: Manel wastes no energy on this song or performance, so I won't either. It's terrible.
Ukraine: They went from having a totally creepy rock entry (with the time bombs) in the national final to being a boring rock entry here, unless they bring the timers back for the second rehearsal. I don't like it at all and I have no idea how this will do on Saturday.
Germany: Rumour has it this looks quite good on screen, so I'm quite happy. They've chosen a clear colour scheme and Levina is fine vocally. This will really depend on the camera effort again. It might not even come bottom three.
United Kingdom: I really don't like the song. It's down in the 30s for me, but I have to admit: They've kept it simple for Lucie and that's what she needed. Not a bad effort at all if this looks good on camera.
France: Why can't France get the staging right? Sure, the background is fantastic, but with those wide camera shots, a tiny Alma is going to get totally lost on that stage with such a background. They have to sort this out.