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Eurovision 2013 Contenders: A Study in Pink

With pink being colour of choice at Eurovision, it’s time we embarked on a short journey of Sherlock-esque deduction to uncover the leading suspects most likely to make us a killing.

1.  Denmark: Emmelie de Forest – Only Teardropsemmelie fellon

Emmelie probably won’t make you a killing.  Currently available at under evens, yet that may lengthen if other contenders are drawn into the second half of the draw.

Only Teardrops possesses a strong enthno vibe that will broaden Denmark’s appeal to Eastern and Balkan voters.  What’s more, with a Shakira-like refrain, Emmelie’s song should remain sympathetic to western viewers.

Denmark are desperate to win the contest, having felt hard done by following the burial of A Friend in London in the 2011 draw.  With Malmö just a short trip across the Øresund Bridge, there’s no finer time or place for Denmark to succeed.

The omens are on their side too:

In 1985, Norway won Eurovision under the host nation Sweden’s roof in the city of Gothenburg.  The win was kept among friends in 1999 too, when the Danish Olsen Brothers won in the Swedish capital of Stockholm.  Are we heading to Copenhagen or Herning (reportedly the favoured city) in 2014?

There’s no doubting the universal appeal of Only Teardrops.  The stage show is thoroughly engaging and tremendously uplifting.  Furthermore, the climactic ending looks and feels like a winner’s song, so the reprise – along with every national broadcaster announcing it as the favourite – will likely whip up support from many floating voters.

Is Emmelie de Forest your prime suspect?

 Denmark Win – 1.91

2.  Norway: Margaret Berger – I Feed you my Lovemargaret jail

Margaret Berger is a consummate performer.  The 27 year old markets her song better than most in this contest.  There’s something almost hypnotic about watching Margaret perform I Feed you my Love.  She magnetises your glare as she seduces and flirts with the camera.

Unchanged from the Norwegian Melodi Grand Prix final, this is a lesson in simple and effective staging.  It isn’t dependant on an arsenal of pyrotechnics to sell its message.

The edgy, electronic, radio-friendly elements to the Norwegian song are huge strengths likely to score well with the juries.  One might argue that it’s a western leaning song that may struggle to engage the Balkans and some areas of the Eastern Bloc.  Yet, more recently juries have been sympathetic to musically impressive songs.  Just look at Germany 2010, Italy & Denmark 2011 and obviously Loreen’s Euphoria.  All of those songs were either masterful musical compositions or radio-friendly entries.

Taking the omens articulated further up, could we be heading to Stavanger in 2014?

Is Margaret your culprit?

 Norway to Win (circa) – 10.0

3.  Azerbaijan: Farid Mammadov – Hold Mefarid jail

Year after year, the Eastern European vote vacuum, Azerbaijan is vastly underrated by the Eurovision community and betting markets.  They never fail to produce a highly polished song that attracts pan-European support.  To date, they have never failed to qualify or finish outside of the top 10.

Farid wants us to hold him and after watching his song, many will be sucked into that fantasy.

I wasn’t a supporter of this year’s Azerbaijani entry, believing that Farid lacks the star vocal to win Eurovision.  I still doubt that Farid can win, yet I have now come around to believing top-4 placing is possible regardless of the draw.

Is Farid your smooth criminal primed win Eurovision?

 Azerbaijan win –  18.0

 Azerbaijan Top-4 – 3.0

4.  Georgia: Sophie & Nodi – Waterfallsophie and nodi jail

With assistance from one of Sweden’s top writers, Thomas G:son, Georgia are taking Eurovision 2013 very seriously.

Concerns regarding Sophie & Nodi’s interplay and vocal strength have dissipated on the back of their rehearsal performances.  Aside from Denmark, Georgia’s staging seems designed to sell a winning message.  One can overanalyse these visual selling tools and just dismiss them as being contrived and too treacly.  Nevertheless, as with the X-Factor UK, the average viewer is happy being played like a puppet.

One controversial aspect of the Georgian entry that will surely raise questions of impartiality from the EBU, is the inclusion of Reference Group member and Eurovision Producer, Christer Björkman’s partner, Martin Kagemark, as a Georgian backing vocalist.  Is Georgia due a good running order slot?

Are Sophie & Nodi your crime duo?

 Georgia Win (each way 1-4) – 29.0

5. Russia: Dina Garipova – What Ifdina jail

Russia has an incredible record at Eurovision when they send commercial or well produced songs.   Dina Garipova’s What If is gentle, but stirring ballad that is capable of going against many of the other similar compositions.

As the dominant regional state, Russia will enjoy considerably more televote support than in the semi-final 1.  With five placed finishes over the last decade, it makes sense to keep the winner of The Voice, Russia in your thoughts.

Is Dina Garipova your Russian assassin?

 Russia Win (each way 1-3) – 15.0

5.  Germany: Cascada – Gloriousnatalie jail

With over 20 singles and a string of platinum hits, one of Europe’s foremost dance groups brings their brand of euro-dance to Eurovision.

Glorious did tread a similar path to Loreen’s Euphoria, yet subsequent changes to the arrangement to shrink it down to the permitted 3 minutes, has put an end to the plagiarism claims.

On Sunday, Natalie Horler delivered the most professional rehearsal we’d seen.  Straight out of the box, she exploited her years of arena experience and announced Germany as the main Big-5 contender and potential top-4 contender.

To date, Cascada’s official Eurovision.tv video has attracted over 3-million views, second only to Italian X-Factor and San Remo winner, Marco Mengoni.

Looking back over the last three years, one should expect at least two pop/ballads in the top-4 with at least one upbeat song filling one of the last two places.  I’ve already backed Germany for the top-10, but should we anticipate bigger things for Cascada?

Is Natlie Horler your femme fatale?

Germany to Win 29.0 (each way 1-4) SportingBet

Other Potential Suspects not to be Ruled Out

  • Finland: Krista Siegrids – Marry Me

Viral contenders are an element to watch out for.  Russia’s Babushki and Ireland’s Jedward sent Eurovision into a frenzy in 2011 and 2012.

The subject of gay marriage and equal rights is a particularly well publicised subject across Europe.  It’s a topic that polarises opinion, yet it’s an issue due to be raised at Eurovision.

Finland’s Marry Me is one suspect not to be ruled out, even with a lesbian kiss added to the end of the song.  The stunt is gaining plenty of traction across the Scandinavian region, especially in Finland, where a few politicians spoken in support of Krista’s stance.

More impressive is the 27 year old’s climb up the OGAE rankings.  I traditionally don’t read much into polls, but to barely register after months of coverage, then suddenly rank 4th in the semi-final chart illustrates the infectious nature of the Finnish song and its viral #DingDong catchphrase.

Is Krista Siegfrids your shout to pillage the bookmakers?

 Finland Win (each way 1-4) – 51.0

  • Greece: Koza Mostra – Alcohol is Free

Alcohol is Free is a wonderful prospect, especially in Sweden!  The Koza Mostra guys and Agathon Iakovadis perform their lively and infectious song with real gusto.

Greece has placed in the top-4 three times over the last decade, which is a fairly impressive record.  Over the same period, Greece has achieved eight top-10 finishes, so they can be relied on for high finishes.

Accounting for the typical party-loving Saturday night audience, it’s highly likely the Greek Alcohol is Free message could inspire a flood of support from the thrill seekers across Europe.  What’s more, with the elimination of Serbia, Slovenia, Croatia and Montenegro, the Greek entry has no competition for votes in that region.

Can Koza Mostra slice their way through the field?

 Greece Win (each way 1-4) – 51.0

  • Moldova: Aliona Moon – O’Mie

It’s all about Aliona’s dress.  Mimicking Azerbaijan’s neat gimmick from last year, Moldova have taken their stage presentation a few steps further by synchronicity the backdrop visuals and adding a Wicked-style Defying Gravity take-off moment.

With a jury-box-ticking piano on stage, in addition to some effective Capoeira choreography, the Moldovan package is a long odds prospect to consider!

Moldova enjoy support from a multitude of nations, so with question marks over Romania qualification, will Moldova pick up extra televote support as a result of the hole left by regional giants, Romania?

Is Aliona Moon dressed to kill?

 Moldova Win (each way 1-4) – 81.0

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About Gavster

Owner & Chief Editor
 
I’m a qualified designer and the official geek in the crew, dedicating most of my free time to keeping the ESCtips show on the road. My family routes allow me to support the UK, Ireland and Italy.

6 comments

  1. Gav doesn’t like Anouk, boo 🙂
    It looks like Greece and Finland can’t get sufficient jury love needed for the win these days so I would rule them out. Assuming they all get second half, top3 in your list looks most promising indeed and I have those currently green (except Denmark on break-even) plus Anouk of course 🙂

  2. I see you’ve also ruled out The Ukraine. Or maybe just forgotten 😀 The juries will love her, just as they love Albania last year.
    And I agree on Moldova (especially if Cezar doesn’t qualify) and Finland, I’d love to see an upset, it’s getting a bit too predictable. But Greece has no chance. And I’d add UK to the list, Holding out for a Hero is still played on the radio daily here in Serbia (believe it or not)!
    If Azerbaijan draws second half, it’s them, remember, there’s no Turkey, so they get their diaspora.

  3. Having made my bets on Norway and Denmark, I’m most worried about Ukraine.

    I’d like to put a few coins on a top4 on Azerbajjan, I’ve never gone wrong betting on them.
    Had a top4 bet on them in 2009, which was the only thing that made the competition exciting, seeing as Rybak had locked the win about 3 minutes into the voting 😉

    • It depends how they treat Ukraine in the running order. My guess is that they’ll want to position Denmark after it, as they kind of fish from the same pond.

      Daniel and I were talking about it last night on the way back from the arena. My thoughts are that Azer will proceed Sweden, and Ukraine will likely follow it. That’s probably too calculated, but we should expect Denmark from 19th. Perhaps Finland will close the show?

      • Ugh, I absolutely hate the idea of the host choosing the running order.

        Do you think they will screw Norway over in favor of Denmark?

        • Yes I do. Though I reckon Norway kills itself anyway – it’s a slow-burner and doesn’t excite like Denmark.

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