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Eurovision: Semi-Final 2 Preview

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Last updated 8th May

A controversial list of qualifiers I think you will agree and mostly based on info I’ve gleaned from people affiliated with the many delegations.

I could easily swap Slovenia/Belarus and Malta, but I think Malta’s danger comes from the explosive impact of Switzerland and much improved Slovenian entry. Belarus has a simple hook that people can latch on to. Plus, TEO is housewife catnip.

Israel is fanwank. It’s still a respectable and well performed song, but I fear the other upbeat entries divert too much support. Plus, it’s worth bearing in mind that Israel’s national broadcaster will close this year resulting in their withdrawal from the contest. Laying Israel to qualify will be my main play tonight, and with a healthy outright book, I can afford to take it on. Please only bet what you can afford to lose!

Another play is laying Romania in the top-3 market. Their staging is laughably bad, so I think Greece, Norway and Switzerland/Austria will battle for top-3.

Finland might be worth laying if their lead singer, Topi fails to engage the camera.

Lastly, and on the subject of the final outright market, I hope you are all monitoring i-tunes and watching Netherlands storm Europe. If you’ve not already backed a Dutch win, I suggest you get them on side fast! Amsterdam/Rotterdam 2015 is looking more likely by the day. The running order for the final will be published by 3am tomorrow morning.

Please post your new predictions below. Good luck!

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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.

95 comments

  1. I disagree with Israel, Norway, Ireland & Greece.

    Greece will qualify easily, they always do and it will probably end up mid table even though the song deserves to fail…. miserably.

    Norway is a great song in studio version, but the live version was cringe worthy. I think it might be the most overrated song this year and it will go the way of Stella Mwangi or maybe border qualifier.

    Israel has a great song, with a great singer and is fairly instant and memorable. While they continue to get screwed (blatant anti-israeli sentiment by the EBU) in the draw, i do think that they have the possibility to qualify this year and should not be overlooked for qualification.

    I really just don’t think Ireland will qualify. I don’t know why but i think that they will fail.

    • Welcome to ESCtips Jalepeno!

      How do you think the juries will rank the Greek song? Do you think they are capable of being top-3 on the televote without many of their Balkan allies?

      • Many = Cyprus and Bulgaria? We still have Spain, Albania, UK, Germany, San Marino, Italy and Romania

        • Ave Points
          =========
          Cyprus – 11.3
          Albania – 10.6
          Bulgaria – 9.1
          San Marino – 8.6
          Romania – 8.4
          Armenia – 8.0
          Serbia – 6.2
          Azerbaijan – 6.0
          Montenegro – 4.7
          Malta – 4.7

          I understand that there might well be points from Germany, Italy and Spain (if in final), but I’m not predicting massive points, as the figures above support.

          How do you think the juries will rank Greece given the rapping elements and generic upbeat genre – something the juries have been critical of since 2008?

          I should also point out that San Marino are in the other semi-final with Albania. That’s another potential 20 points gone.

          • I was talking about the final because I am sure that we are going to qualify. I am not worried about the jury votes in the semifinal but I am worried about their votes in the final (last year juries gave us the 3rd place in the semifinal and 14th in the final!). I don’t expect us to be in the top 6 again but 8-10 seems possible (we can do really well in televoting, I am not seeing any negative comments around the web and we do great in polls).

          • I really can’t wait for May, I wanna prove you wrong so badly 😛

          • I’m not saying Greece won’t qualify, I’m just making the point that they are exposed this year and need to make significant improvements to ensure qualification. The new ranking system makes the semi-finals harder to predict. For example, a nation can top the televote and still not qualify.

    • if ryan dolan could qualify than kasye will.

  2. I’m also surprised the bookies are underrating Finland. In a year with a lot of strong ballads and weaker uptempo songs, Softengine stands out. If Switzerland could almost qualify in 2012 with an excessively repetitive song in the same genre, Finland, who has more friends, should have no trouble qualifying. Given the State of Drama jury love in Melfest last year, I can’t see the juries NOT going for Something Better and it should appeal to Western televoters (although I think it will get more love from the juries–AFIL only ranked eighteenth with the televoters, admittedly from a poor draw).

    I personally see Israel as still fighting though. Estonia had the coffin slot in SF1 last year with a non-English ballad and Birgit managed to qualify.. Same Heart is IMO another one of the few quality uptempo songs. I can’t find a live performance but judging by the music video, Mei and her team are more than competent. Televoters might be scared off by her aggression but I can see SH being very well-staged with Beyonce-esque dancing and honestly, half the contestants are going to struggle to have visual appeal (some will unfortunately be put off by Conchita’s beard, Carl Espen as you’ve mentioned is no pro on camera, Topi from Finland is attractive but joyless and deadpan, Georgia’s probably going to be a hot mess, et cetera). Granted, this opinion should be taken with several grains of salt–Israel is in my personal top 4 so I could just projecting my hopes onto it 🙂

  3. Norway will be no 1 and Greece 2. Mark my words!

  4. Qualifiers

    1) Norway
    2) Greece
    3) Romania
    4) Switzerland
    5) Finland
    6) Georgia
    7) Belarus
    8) Poland
    9) Slovenia
    10) Malta

  5. This is a very open semi, anything could happen!

    Malta: Again, odd choice of opener, juries should like it on the basis of last year

    Israel: Perhaps too early a draw for such an aggressive song, she’s a great live singer though

    Norway: Possible jury winner of the semi, I hear he’s working with vocal coaches and trying to build his confidence in preparation, so I’m hoping that the nerves will not be an issue (it’s my #1 of 2014 too so I’m hoping it does well)

    Georgia: Sorry but your notes on this cracked me up! xD Hot mess of a song, public wont vote for it, and too inaccessible for conservative juries

    Poland: Polish diaspora in the past have been surprisingly dormant, but this should get them voting in their droves to support it

    Austria: Song alone should make it qualify, but sadly I agree the beard will put more conservative people off big time

    Lithuania: Same as you, got plenty of friends, not sure the juries will be keen on it

    Finland: I hope they keep the same staging as in the UMK final, because I think it’ll give the song more impact

    Ireland: Nice enough song to qualify, probably qualifying bottom half of top 10

    Macedonia: I like the song but I fear the staging will completely ruin it

    Switzerland: Juries will like this, good overall package (very nice song + charming singer + complimentary staging)

    Greece: From a UK perspective, I expect this to top our televote in the semi, but if our jury are a bunch of old farts like last year, they’ll have it dead last

    Slovenia: Not traditionally strong in the televote, but I agree this could be one to watch

    Romania: Kinda annoyed that they’re closing the semi again, one of the very few locks for qualifying (along with Norway) though I expect that support to fade in the final

    PS – from a UK perspective, I wouldn’t be surprised if an old fart UK jury have Malta, Norway and Switzerland amongst their favourites, as they’re all Radio 2-friendly songs

  6. I don’t think Greece will do that bad in the jury voting (as all of you expecting). Don’t judge Rise up from what you saw in the national final… The staging, lighting and sound system were awful. And don’t forget that it was their first official performance, they are kids ( rapper is 19 years old), they were nervous as hell. I have watched some of their interviews and they say that they keep rehearsing and try to keep up with something clever and really interesting for May, they won’t just stand up there and sing. Greece is going to qualify and be in top 10 in the final, I am sure!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CF-qPQU0dJ0

  7. ireland won’t qualify? funny joke. now please give us a proper prediction

  8. Malta

    Defeated the wonderful Pin in The Middle for the ESC ticket.Solid but Switzerland is far more infectious,lay at 1.35 or less.

    Israel

    Slot two didnt stop the wonderful Birgit last year but she had the best vocals in the semi.Juries might help things but staging needs to be perfect.Lay at 1.35 or below.Back at 1.7 or above.

    Norway

    Wonderful genuine ballad and singer.Nerves look good unless they tip over the edge.No chance of winning ESC.

    Georgia

    The Battle of the Little Big Horn meets Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.Terrible.

    Poland

    A work of genious.Hugely infectious.Cleo owns the stage and her delivery is perfect for this genre.They need to get the juries onside.The ethnic dancers are confirmed and they are hugely experienced.They need to stage this to link the ethnic and contemporary so it comes across as genuine.Do that and My Slowianie is a semi win contender.Back to win semi at 7s+ and cover with a top 3 bet when available.

    Austria

    Fantastic vocals and a decent song.Should qualify but far from certain.Lay at 1.3 or below.

    Lithuania

    Far too leftfield for ESC and that might spell trouble.If it was a 20 act final it would fail.Borderline here.Probably just a back at 2.4 or above.

    Finland

    Contemporary and underrated,this is going through.Back above 1.3

    Ireland

    Going through easily.Vocals are a real worry for the final as is the staging.Back at 1.3 and above.

    Belarus

    Terrible and not funny at all.The fixed final will get what it deserves.A quick ride home.

    F.Y.R. Macedonia

    Kaliopi was amazing,Tijana is a pub singer.She needs 5 backing singers to hide things.Even then it would look all wrong.Might scrape through but a lay at 1.85 or below.

    Switzerland

    Hugely loveable song and group.Genuine and quite clever.Vocals could car crash but if they hold it together deserves to qualify,back at 2.1 and above.

    Greece

    Terrible song,terrible staging.Terrible artists.Its Greece so should qualify but lay at 1.2 or below.

    Slovenia

    Tinkara Kovač’ is a fantastic genuine artist.This song has massive potential to do well.The staging needs some work but the melody has a lovely progression and chorus links though they missed the chance to lift the business end.The ethnic elements really work yet its very accessible to western televoters.Tinkara will look fantastic on stage and this is a serious darkhorse.Lack of friends is a worry but this has potential to top 10 in the final.Iv backed it at average 340 to trade out at lower prices hopefully.Jury love certain.Strong back at 1.75 or above.Id be very tempted to back this top 3 if i can get 10s+.Tinkara is just very unlucky we are Balkan lite this year for the final.

    Romania

    Its as cliche as they come but at least they do it well.Certain to go through but a possible bomb in the final.

    • softengines vocals are worse than kaseys by a clear mile, and considering she performed in the rte studio, thats not good from soft engine point of view

      • I think the fact you’re from Ireland somewhat disqualifies you from offering objective analysis on that subject, Cathal.

        • i just don’t get how norway,finland,ireland and macedonia and maybe some others that i don’t remember have been un impressive vocally and ireland is the only one being targeted for it, even though from what I’ve seen finland and norway were just as bad, the difference is she was performing at the late late which you should know by now has bad acoustics and the 2 others were performing on a big stage.

          • It depends on whether a good vocal makes or breaks the song or not. Of course there’s a difference between being out of tune and simply weak or limited. Kasey is the latter, and the song is vocally driven as well as being very Eurovisionny. Finland doesn’t need Jared Leto, it’s powerful and commercially relevant enough as it is. We’d never get anywhere on this site if we judged every song strictly by the same criteria, we’re talking about music, not maths. Fairness doesn’t come into it.

          • kasey isn’t weak vocally, she was singing on the late late were the acoustics are terrible, i can’t believe after all these years where its proven time and time again that the late late show affects performances ye still don’t understand. jedward 2011 is a good example they were awful in the NF and spectacular in dusseldorf. and despite coming last in 2013 ryan proved that swell, he was much better at the eurovision then at the NF. and kasey is defiantly the better singer than the other two. you will see in Copenhagen

          • I haven’t seen any evidence to make me think otherwise about Kasey. I’ve never heard anything about the RTE studio’s acoustics before either, so forgive me if I have some difficulty taking you at your word there.

            Besides, the other thing that doesn’t put Ireland in good stead is the traditional Irish elements. Every time that’s been included in the song or presentation (2007, 2010, 2013), Ireland has come near-last.

          • 2007, was just a shit song tbh 2010, was a ballad which was performed be4 greece. 2013, ryan dolan came 14th in the tele voting and had a bad jury rehearsal which led to him doing so poorly in the jury + ireland this year have a song that is more suited to eurovision than the other 3 were, last year the song was just nothing special and was just a typical song that you would hear on the radio. this song is much more jury friendly ad tele vote friendly, and as i said the last 3 times ireland have had poor performances on the late late and had great performances at eurovision, they were just out of tune were as kasey was holding back on her vocals to avoid going out of tune as I’ve seen her perform live in a bar on her promotion prior to the NF and she was brilliant, and if you look in the past i have never seen an uptempo song perform on key.

          • and you forget denmark won with an irish sounding song last year.

    • Excuse me, but Tijana is not a “pub singer” as you called her, as you can see in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OUHQFWNZHp0

  9. This semi is a huge mine field and anything could happen.
    Contenders for semi win:

    Poland: If juries take to this certain top 3 possible win , ,A good few voting buddies in the semi, 40 million hits on YouTube so certain high televote. If asked what country Poland wanted to follow it would have been Georgia. Will be backing this on every market possible if the price is anyway decent now that it will be sung in polish.

    Romania: Pimp slot, proven performers, good song. My semi winner.

    Qualifiers:
    Finland: Very good rock song the only one in semi and sailing into final.

    Norway: Good song. Should qualify. Doesn’t work live for me live.

    Ireland: Best Irish song in years. Has friends in semi so qualifying.

    Not Qualifying:
    Georgia: Strangest song ever. It puts a smile on my face every time I listen to this it’s so fucked up. The biggest shock in Eurovision history if this does not come last in the semi.
    The Rest:

    Greece: Personally I love it studio version that is. Live version not the best vocally, televote won’t be a problem. But juries don’t like rap. Late running slot saves it I think. Will be the closest Greece come to not qualifying.

    Slovenia: Possible jury vote, but gets lost in-between Greece and Romania for televote and not among friends either. Wouldn’t be putting my money on it to qualify.

    Austria: Vocally good so jury points no problem. Song is good leaning to qualifying.

    Belarus: Teo comes across as loving himself too much and could do with a slap in my opinion. Not a fan of the song but it’s not one I would rule out.

    Macedonia: I like it. The girl can sign but looks very awkward on stage. No friends this time round. I should say not qualifying but will wait for rehearsals as I might do something stupid and back it to qualify.

    Malta: It’s now better than the original. Going first not idea. borderline

    Lithuania: Meh. does nothing for me either way. Lots of friends might just get it to qualify.

    Israel: Following Malta not ideal for it .neither is the 2nd slot leaning to not qualifying but wont rule it out yet.

    Switzerland: I like it, but if diction doesn’t improve juries will mark it down I would think. borderline

  10. The “ESC version” has leaked and someone has edited the original video around this version.Its not official but Polish people are saying it is the 99% finished version.Donatan said it wouldnt be shown until rehearsals so we cant be sure.
    Photos are kicking around as well of staging and it is Cleo,3 of the dancers and 2 backing singers/dancers.Again if right thats the perfect mix probably.This isnt official but it ticks everything id expect them to do with it so likely this is it,or very very close.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bj_ZEGWtrfU

    • This mix matches the lyrics on Eurovision.tv’s website so I’d say yeah this is it. The pauses they’ve introduced are both good and bad.. it means they’ve been very astute and designed the song so that they can focus on delivering a good vocal performance and Cleo can keep up without having to rely too much on backing vocals. It also makes the chorus more identifiable within the song. On the other hand, it feels like it cuts the flow of the song a bit, but that won’t be a big deal to anyone who’s never heard it. They’re doing all the right things.

      • I think this song has gone backwards. Most non-Slavic nations will have switched off by the time the English comes along, so that change serves little purpose other than making the song sound scrappy.

        • I agree it would be better in Polish by far.The structure now is fine and will be easier for the stage show but the English part is a bad idea.She struggles to even sing it and it turns this from an authentic act to a bit forced.It would also be far better for the juries in Polish.

          • I don’t think it makes any difference. I’ve never had a problem with the English version. I honestly wouldn’t overthink it. People will be taking in the spectacle, they’ll notice a change to English, their ears will prick up, and they’ll absorb the song like they will every other.

          • That is a good point Ben the fact the viewer will notice the change to English and take more in.Im interested in seeing if she has two backing singers for the chorus.If she does will they also be dancers?.The photos leaking out on the staging seem to show 3 dancers and two backing singers.Is 3 dancers enough?.

    • whoops… someone needs to start a campaign to get it back in all Polish. the chorus in particular doesn’t work in English.

    • I still don’t understand the parody aspect about Poland.
      “Now shake what ya mama gave ya”
      I mean seriously, the brillant social critique does not reveal itself to me.

      • Haha I know, right? It’s about showing tits n’ ass, and oh it’s also social critique of course. Robin Thicke is also social critique, btw.

        • it’s lost on me too. when you think of Slavic girls you think of porn as they dominate the industry in Europe and this just re-enforces peoples (unfounded) idea that they are easy – stag do in Prague anyone? not really a blow for women’s lib or sexual liberation…

  11. My enormous write up for semi final 2 + voting finalists can be read at this link. 🙂

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3010319/2014-SF2-thoughts.rtf

    I have been making minor updates to the write up for SF1 as well, and the same link over on the other preview article will take you to the latest version.

    Updates during rehearsals will be applied to both of these too.

  12. if ireland is being criticised about vocals why isn’t finland, they were worse.

    • It’s not really a straight comparison. Finland have a totally different kind of song and singer (and a better one in my opinion) – the problem with Kasey is that she can’t bring the song to life. She delivers the whole song within a very limited range, the chorus doesn’t feel bigger than the verses, so to speak. This was sadly also a problem with Niamh in 2010, and probably also a fault of Jonas Gladnikoff’s songwriting. The studio version sounds really big and showy but when it comes to the live performance there’s never any effective delivery. Compare the start of the final chorus in the studio version of It’s For You to the same part of the song when she performed it in Oslo. There was nothing WRONG with her singing, but it was just totally underwhelming.

      Frankly I have no idea why Ireland keeps using Jonas Gladnikoff. I happen to know that a song on the same level of strength as Joni’s Waterfall in Hungary was turned down for Eurosong this year.

      • the thing is, you all are judging her from the late late show performance, all eurovision fans should know by now how hard it is to perform in that studio, you will see in Copenhagen how good she really is. secondly the Fins are defiantly not better singers, they had 3 chances to perform it well live on a live stage and they blew it each time, the fact that kasey was better vocally in a RTE studio than soft engine on a live stage is bait worrying for finland.

        • Jesus christ, why be so defensive about it simply because you’re from Ireland yourself? It’s nothing personal; I don’t go all haywire here because people don’t like the Swedish entry (and I don’t like it either). We’re trying to assess entries objectively here, mixing in your own nationality just clouds your judgement. Also, the outcome of the competition isn’t affected by these discussions. So try to chill a bit 🙂

          • squall, i am not being defensive, I’m just saying that if kasey is being judged for vocal capacity and soft engine isn’t is just note fair tbh. considering they were worse and that they were performing on a stage were as kasey performed in the late late show were there are bad acoustics

  13. BET ALERT! Israel NOT to qualify 3.0 @ Bwin. Get it while it lasts.

    • have you got a link gav – i can’t see it as a market

      • i think someone must have hammered it – it isn’t there. nothing for malta either

        • Iv noticed they tend to take prices down after big bets then put them back up with changed prices later.Why they dont simply change them and leave them live i dont know.To be fair to them they seem to be trying to keep the overround on most of the yes/no and head to heads at around 8%.Thats decent value considering nobody else seems to be willing to price up.

  14. i like finland a lot this year but cmon, how many time sin the past have we said finland will do well and they end up bombing, fortunately i feel this is a step up from there efforts the last few years, but I’m not giving my final prediction until i see a rehearsal.

  15. My review of the first half of semi 1

    Malta : i feel this being first and with switzerland in the mix will effect its chances but as we know jurys love malta and this imo is malta’s best ever ESC entry i expect them to qualify at around 5-6, but with switzerland in the mix it might pull it down ever so slightly but not enough to stop it from qualifying

    Israel : birgit last year had a lot of neighbourhood voting and that made the difference, israel dosent have that advantage and with such a competitive semi i feel that lack of neighbours along with the poor draw will be israels undoing

    Norway : I expect norway to make it, but i don’t think its as safe as people think it is, his live performances have not been convincing,the song isn’t memorable on first listen and of course him being third is a problem. but then i put my thinking hat and then i realise that there isn’t that much of a problem with qualification but you never know. at the moment i would say defiantly top 15 in the final but could be top 5 if it gets a good draw in the final.

    Georgia : To be honest this song pisses me off, its such a bad song so bad that even with there impressive record i don’t see them getting enough votes to even get remotely close to qualification and to be frank it would be some achievement if it finished higher than anything else in the semi. georgia last 2 years did not come in the top 10 in the tele vote and if they didn’t than I’m pretty confident that this won’t either.

    Poland : When the full allocation draw was made ( Before donation and cleo were even considered) i gave poland really good chance of making it due to its really impressive voting strength (UK,Ireland,Germany,Lithuania,Belarus,Georgia) but now that they have sent a decent song i don’t see any trouble with qualification, the jurys will hate it but not enough to stop it making the final as the song is very tele vote friendly and it will not only get the diaspra votes they would get but also a lot of votes from children at home. i could see this as a shock top 5 in the semi, but in the final idk how it will do depends on running order i guess but atm its qualifying which should be enough to make TVP stay another year at least 🙂

    Austria : I know austrias record is appauling but this performance is just to good not to qualify. i don’t particularly like the song but i can still see its apeal and i feel this is a certain qualifier and potentially top 10 in the final and i would not be surprised if it did, every now and then a country finally shines at eurovision (uk 2009,belgium/germany 2010,italy 2011,albania 2012,Malta 2013) and i feel this might be austrias time to do it.

    Lithuania : this is my second least favourite song of the whole contest only georgia is worse imo, and be4 the semi finals draw was made i gave this a really good chance of making it, but i feel poland will take a lot of diaspra from the uk and ireland which will hurt lithuania more, andreas pojaves last year had just as good voting strength if not better and he only scraped through by 7 points and the difference is that song was more tele vote and jury appeal, i don’t see this make the jurys top 10 and tbh i don’t see it scoring well in tele voting either, pojaves song had a good melody which helped it come 5th but this song is just weird and dosent have enough appeal to it to make it qualify, so now i have it down as a non-qualifier.

  16. Bwin have reopened the Israel NQ bet @ 2.4. Still too high for me.

    • Softengine with superb live vocals? were we listening to the same performance, there vocals certainly are not “Superb”.

    • btw gav i must ask why we are being so confident about norway, personally i do think they will be top 3 if they perform well but lets take some of the facts, he’s a weak vocalist,he’s 3rd in the running order and on first listen to song isn’t that memorable, norway have the weakest voting strength in the whole semi and as you said he’s not someone that viewers will inspire to be, if this was roman lob like you said singing it, it would be a different story. i still do think they will qualify but i wouldn’t be as confident as you are, i think the only definite qualifier is romania and maybe greece, the rest will need to have impressive performances or else they may not make it.

  17. Iv backed Poland at Skybet semi 2 @ 26s EW top 3 .Thats far far too big a price.Poland will do one of two things.If the juries see it for what it is and they tone down the sexual side it could win the semi.The televote could be huge and they might only have Romania to beat given Greece is missing lots of friends here to win semi.On the other hand the juries could mark it so low that under the new system it bombs.Its a 12s shot to me so 26s is a cracking punt with the EW.

    • poland also have a huge diaspra vote to.

      • They do Cathan.The UK and Germany also vote in this semi and there are huge Polish populations in both countries now so i expect Poland to top the televote in both.
        On paper it looks a poor draw but following the mess of Georgia will make them really stand out.The commercial break also follows them and that doesnt hurt.
        The problem is the juries.This might look amazing on stage,but they really cant simulate sex acts like the preview showed.They need to tone it down.The backing singer on the washboard was the right idea.Sexy but not sexual.
        Id edit the back video on the screens as well.Lots of national dress but less cleavage.They need to walk the line where the dads enjoy it but it doesnt offend the juries.

        • and there is also ireland swell, ireland have voted for poland more than anyone else, and i agree being followed by georgia will make it look even more appealing, however as gav said europe in some parts is quite religious so if it looks too sexual than they might not vote for it, and yes the jury is a major problem and as we saw with igranka last year doing extremely well in the tele voting is no guarantee that its safe it came 4th in tele voting and 14th in jurys which made it miss out, thats the main problem for the song, and you remember with jurys is not only can they vote for songs they like, but also they can vote against songs they dislike e.g if johnny logan hates the polish song he could just rank it 15th and that obviously will have a huge drag effect, if this was a jury friendly song it would be a definite qualifier but still i expect poland to make it because mainly of the diaspra as i feel with it being in polish it won’t appeal to the public as much as it would have in english.

        • and secondly I’ve heard her sing it live at the george in dublin and she was very impressive.

  18. gavster listen to this and tell me that kasey can’t sing
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23RaXx2hyII

    • We backed Kasey to win selection Cathan but you do have to question her vocal.She has very little range and cant hit any high notes without serious risk of pitching.
      As this gets into up-tempo she needs to be compared to other singers of up-tempo songs this year.Listen to her alongside Maria Yaremchuk and Tanja for Estonia.They are different league to Kasey.I think the song has enough to qualify and it easily deserved to win selection but it could face a rough time in the final.

      • the difference is your judging her from one performance on the late late show and she pulled off a better performance on the late late show than any of the other previous irish entrants, people said the same thing about ryan dolan last year from watching his performance on the late late show and then you saw the difference in eurovision, secondly,

  19. Lithuania gets weirder: Lithuania costumes

  20. Anyone remember Blake’s 7?
    Maybe 2 died?

    • That was an amazing show Donal,loved it and there was always only 6 of them from the start.They really do look like the remake dont they haha).

  21. I think Ireland will qualify for the final. But if we don’t make the final or we do badly in the final, I will start working on a new national final for RTE. Seriously, The Late Late Show is a talk show, NOT a Eurovision pre selection show.

    Here is what I have in mind for 2015:

    1. The show will be called EIREvision Song Contest.
    2. It will allow both amateur and professional singers to prticipate.
    3. World Class Choreographers and song writers will be hired.
    4. There will be 2 hosts. 1 male and 1 female.
    5. There will be 4 judges. I am considering Louis Walsh, Lena Meyer Landrut, Charlotte Pirelli and Alexander Rybak.
    6. It will be held in venues like The RDS Simmonscourt in front of 6,000 people.
    7. Best of all, the rest of Europe will choose the Irish entry for us. 20 participating countries will vote and it will be a combination of 50% jury voting and 50% televoting.

    What I hope to achieve with this show:

    1. Send better quality songs to the Eurovision Song Contest.
    2. Get the rest of Europe involved with the Irish selection.
    3. Create a successful prime time Saturday night talent show that the whole family can enjoy.
    4. Most importantly, restore interest amongst families in Ireland in the Eurovision and bring back a sense of national pride.

    Please tell me what you think of my idea for a new national selection process please. 🙂

  22. If Ireland ever wants to win a Eurovision again we have to admit that we’ve been out of touch for 20 years.
    How could Johnny Logan or Linda Martin possibly be overlooked as part of a selection process? How about Phil Coulter, would he be interested?
    Absolutely forget Louis Walsh as he would only push his own agenda.
    Finally if the Irish public are involved in a selection process another Donna & Joseph will be sent to represent us. The Irish public don’t understand that Eurovision has moved on.

    • Hi Donal Ryan

      I agree. Ireland really needs to stop kicking off a big tantrum every time we don’t win or we fail to qualify or whatever. RTE are anxious to win this year and they were quite vociferous about that. They obviously are not bothered by it if they keep the Late Late Eurosong Special.

  23. I just watched Ireland’s 2nd rehearsal and let me tell you something. It looks 10,000 times better. I think that if she can improve her vocals even more (they were a lot better) and if she can have fun, then I think she is a certain qualifier.

  24. I’ve also watched Eurovision.tv’s 2nd rehearsal impressions playlist of this semi final tonight and this is my current prediction.

    Malta – Qualifying
    Israel – Probably NOT qualifying

    Norway – Qualifying
    Georgia – Not qualifying

    Poland – Probably qualifying
    Austria – Qualifying

    Lithuania – Probably qualifying
    Finland – Qualifying

    Ireland – Probably NOT qualifying
    Belarus – Probably qualifying

    Macedonia – Not qualifying
    Switzerland – Qualifying

    Greece – Qualifying
    Slovenia – Not qualifying
    Romania – Qualifying

    This is a difficult semi final for sure. Israel and Ireland both appear to be just about strong enough to qualify based on my own viewings and reports, but having taken all the songs in one after another, these two are the ones that felt the weakest besides those which I’ve marked as non-qualifiers. Especially in Ireland’s case, I just have to consider Jonas Gladnikoff’s very poor track record for Ireland. It’s a pretty crap song to begin with, so I’m not sure the quality of the vocal or staging matters at this point.

    Poland is probably going to come off weird and a bit smutty, plus I’m also concerned for a vocal that seems not quite as powerful as the studio version, which puts it in danger. But, I believe it has the most visually memorable backdrop, a couple of friends for cultural support, and there’s some breathing space between it and the first three, in the shape of Georgia. I’m not allowing myself to predict complete 50/50 maybes, so I’ve leaned it towards qualification on the simple basis of song quality.

    Lithuania were set for the final in my head before, but I felt this performance was a bit disappointing, so I’ve taken it down to just a likely qualifier now. Belarus on the other hand have moved up, because it’s slick, catchy and entertaining. It’s not quite there yet for me, though, because if we can perceive it as a write-off joke entry to begin with, then so can the public.

    Greece have successfully taken a song which could easily be in the bottom 5 of this semi-final and have put on a highly entertaining show with it. Given how tight they must be, I tip my hat to their unending enthusiasm. If the juries kill it off, we will all know the reason why, but it comes across as good enough for the final now.

    Slovenia appear to have stripped away everything that was interesting about Round and Round. Tinkara can’t complete her flute solo, she’s dressed like a witch, the stage is too plain and most of all, (I hate it when countries do this!) they’ve taken a musically dignified ending to a song and replaced it with a big cheesy vocal finish. Why must every song end with a bang? It’s a trick that’s so old that it’s lost its effectiveness, like overusing swear words. I would have staged Slovenia so differently.

  25. Not at all confident about that block of 4 towards the end of the first half, but here’s my final prediction for tonight.

    Malta – Q
    Israel – NQ
    Norway – Q
    Georgia – NQ
    Poland – Q
    Austria – Q
    Lithuania – Q
    Finland – Q
    Ireland – NQ
    Belarus – Q
    Macedonia – NQ
    Switzerland – Q
    Greece – Q
    Slovenia – NQ
    Romania – Q

    • Your list is what I was going to publish, but I felt pressured to be bolder in my prediction and not just take Malta qualification as a done deal.

  26. I’m laying Israel also. I thinks she’s impressive without any backing vocal assistance, but how many people are actually realizing this except us? Price is massive massive value, and there might be a good in-play opportunity here as well.

    One question though:
    “it’s worth bearing in mind that Israel’s national broadcaster will close this year resulting in their withdrawal from the contest”

    Couldn’t that also mean a good result for Israel this year would be wanted by EBU to attract another broadcaster to overtake Eurovision duties as it happened in Greece?

  27. Malta
    Israel
    Norway
    Poland
    Austria
    Finland
    Belarus
    Switzerland
    Greece
    Romania

    That’s my lot 🙂

  28. YYYYIIIIHHHHAAAA! After the long wait it is finally here: the second semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest Copenhagen 2014! I think this is a much weaker semi-final in contrast to the first semi-final on Tuesday.

    This is my top 15 of the second semi-final tonight:

    01. Austria
    02. Norway
    03. Ireland
    04. Romania
    05. Slovenia
    06. Israel
    07. Malta
    08. FYR Macedonia
    09. Greece
    10. Georgia
    11. Belarus
    12. Lithuania
    13. Switzerland
    14. Finland
    15. Poland

    I’m very disappointed that I’m not allowed to vote in this semifinal! 🙁

    Of course I hope that my top 10 qualifies, but I think the following 10 countries will qualify for the final (if that has something to do with the quality of the song or anything else is obviously debatable, but I leave that in the middle ;-)):

    01. Greece
    02. Ireland
    03. Israel
    04. Lithuania
    05. Malta
    06. Norway
    07. Austria
    08. Romania
    09. Slovenia
    10. Switzerland

    Let’s see how many countries I correctly predict this time. Last year I predicted 7 out of 10 countries correct.

    Lots of luck to all participants! Do your best and enjoy your moment on stage! Winning is always (a little bit) important, but especially to prove yourself. Don’t forget that all of you are actually already a winner because you have won the right to represent your country at the biggest, most acclaimed, most popular music festival in the world! May the best win! And eventually quality always comes floating to the surface, isn’ it?!

    I’d like to wish everyone who will be watching and will be listening all over the world, lots of listening and viewing pleasure tonight! Enjoy the show, the spectacle, the atmosphere, the magic …!

  29. Shell’s Q’s:

    Malta
    Israel
    Norway
    Austria
    Lithuania
    Finland
    Belarus
    Switzerland
    Greece
    Slovenia

    It’s a MIRAAACLEEE.

  30. My calls for tonight:

    10 to qualify in no particular order:

    Malta
    Norway
    Austria
    Finland
    Belarus
    Switzerland
    Greece
    Romania
    Slovenia
    Lithuania

    Main bet is Belarus at odds against, with small lays of Poland and Israel as well as a small bet on Switzerland Top 3.

  31. Pimps qualifiers
    Malta
    Norway
    Poland
    Ireland
    Belarus
    Greece
    Switzerland
    Romania
    Austria
    Israel.

    Have played both finland and israel as value lays even though ive put israel just in
    .and belarus to qualify

  32. My 10 to qualify tonight.
    Poland
    Ireland
    Malta
    Greece
    Romania
    Norway
    Finland
    Switzerland
    Austria
    Belarus

    Nothing would surprise me in this semi even Georgia qualifying.
    Have backed Macedonia to qualify as I see value in it @ 4.0 and Greece semi win.

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