This is not a typo, AISEL, and not Aysel, has been internally selected to represent Azerbaijan at Eurovision 2018.
The 27-year old jazz singer from Baku will be hoping Eurovision is still hungry for real music and not secretly craving greasy fast food pop from Scandinavia. Having said that, people expected a down-tempo lounge song from Dihaj in Kyiv, yet she surprised everyone with her classy, edgy pop-ballad.
Being fluent in English, AISEL will fair better than many of her predecessors, who have tended to struggle when performing live. She also sounds vocally secure in the video above, which isn’t how one would describe the majority of Azeri entrants to date.
As ever, we need a song to fully assess the Land of Fire’s progress in Lisbon.
Can Azerbaijan find their way back into the top-10?