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Estonia: Eesti Laul 2018 Lineup

The Eesti Laul 2018 lineup has just dropped with some of the entries already available. The rest of the songs will be published by 20th December, with the semi-finals scheduled for 10th and 17th February. The final will take place 3rd March.

Semi 1 – 10th February:

  1. Vajé — Laura (Walk With Me)
  2. Iiris & Agoh — Drop That Boogie
  3. Etnopatsy — Kulm
  4. Sibyl Vane — Thousand Words
  5. Aden Ray — Everybody’s Dressed
  6. Tiiu x Okym x Semy — Näita oma energiat
  7. Stig Rästa — Home
  8. Miljardid — Pseudoprobleem
  9. Desiree — On My Mind
  10. Elina Netsajeva — La Forza

Semi 2 – 17th February:

  1. Marju Lanik — Täna otsuseid ei tee
  2. Rolf Roosalu — Show A Little Love
  3. Frankie Animal — (Can’t Keep Calling) Misty
  4. Ellis Parna & Gerli Padar — Sky
  5. Indrek Ventmann — Tempel
  6. Evestus — Welcome to my World
  7. Karl Kristjan & Karl Killing (ft. Wateva) — Young
  8. Metsakutsu — Koplifornia
  9. Girls in Pearls — Spellbound
  10. Nika — Knock Knock

Full versions of all the songs can be found here.

Is it set up for Stig to return to Eurovision?

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  1. Great free money time its Eesti Laul.Pick two main challengers from names and go from there.Until this time that is.
    This line up is a complete curve ball.It looks like the producers have kept out all the big names to maybe give the best songs a better chance of taking the super final.Even the big guns have mostly missed the song writing credits and thats very strange given the talent that was at the song writing camp.
    There are a few very talented acts here though who might have a gem.One, who had what i consider the best Estonian album of the decade.Im glad im not the odds compiler pricing this one up though.We might have to actually go by the songs and performances.Fancy that.

    • Having had the chance to hear the songs the one that stood out for me on first listen is Drop that Boogie. An Eesti Laul winner? – probably not – which is a shame as it reminds me vaguely of Margaret’s Cool Me Down. Stig Rasta has come up with something more modern this time and is probably favourite. Other potential winners are Kulm (a good choice for ESC) and La Forza (which would bomb with ESC juries). Honourable mentions for song quality go to Frankie Animal and Nika – although I can’t see either being mainstream enough to win Eesti Laul

      • I should have added that one major contender that I blatantly missed is Vaje – Laura Walk with Me. Depending on the execution live I could see this doing well with juries and televote at ESC and is probably Estonia’s best hope for a high finish. However, at this stage my money would be on La Forza to take the Eesti Laul win. The Estonian voting public never fail to disappoint!

        • The one red flag would be Estonians voting an Italian language song performed by someone with a Russian surname. Just something to throw into the mix. Also, Estonia only awarded Il Volo 3pts in Vienna. Do they have an appetite for opera?

          Maybe they do. Do the juries? Hmmm. Not sure it’s as clear cut as that.

          Eesti isn’t something I tend to get heavily involved in as it clashes with Melfest. But if La Forza is selected, I’ll be hitting the lay button.

          • Il Volo was third with Estonian televoters if I recall, juries pulled it down. And Tanja was also Russian and won. Barring any vocal mishaps, I’d be very surprised if La Forza isn’t top 2 televoting in the end. Juries could be a problem tho’, hard to say what they’ll make of this one. Also the voting system is probably being changed a bit. I think superfinal is being dropped, but whether there are any other changes is unsure.

            My guess before the semis will be Stig & Elina top 2 televote, and most likely winners, with Vaje being a possible dark horse. It’s hard to see anyone other than these three winning. Maybe Etnopatsy could surprise, but Antsud didn’t do all that well last year.

          • The Russian connection is a big boost for her in the televote.I think the fact EL is so weak this year is why she is standing out to fans.Iv just had lays taken on Estonia on the outright at 15s so plenty of people think a fake Italian opera song sung by a Russian can do what the genuine article in Il Volo couldnt.Unless a trader sees a back to lay trade chance of course.Iv not got involved in EL this year because we dont know how the voting is going to work.Im enjoying the Spanish talent show though,i never thought id say that.

        • ETV are pushing La Forza already across the press.However a few sites iv tracked for years and have a fantastic record of showing the songs going down well with the Estonian public have had two EL songs enter trending already,but not La Forza.Iv never seen an EL go to a song that doesnt enter and trend to the top 6 on this site.Laura was topping it last year,Kerli wasnt in the top 10.Early days of course,and after the semis is the important time.
          My worry is the fact semi 1 looks really tough.I see potential super final songs (has a super final been confirmed yet?) in there to take La Forza on,but its going to be tough getting out of the semi to build momentum.Semi 2 looks much lower quality.

  2. Betfair have an exchange market up there was decent liquidity last year.If anyone sees any bookie markets can they add them on here please.Starting to clear the fog on this a bit now.

  3. Just waded through this lot. Sinfully disappointing line-up. Much like 2015, this looks almost set up to coronate Stig’s entry which I can only describe as sickly dross, by surrounding him with a huge load of random underground songs and Rolf ‘doesn’t know when to f**ing pack it in’ Roosalu.

    La Forza really is the only one that grabs you by the collar and would make for a interesting Eurovision entry. The girl’s got one hell of a set of pipes. But, the rule of thumb with Eesti Laul tends to be, enjoy the cool music but back the MOR radio-fodder.

    Bearing that in mind, a couple of dark horses I’d highlight as alternatives to Stig would be Girls in Pearls, Karl Kristjan, Ellis and Gerli, Frankie Animal and (my personal favourite but that’s not saying much here) Desiree.

    • Hope yoyr well Ben.Looks like we might not get a last 3 super final this year,though thats not certain yet.I agree this is a terrible line-up,like they have avoided letting in all the safe acts to stop one winning and then being left with probably the worst EL ever.
      What i find amazing though is people are backing Estonia at this stage to win ESC.If an Italian song is to challenge the win it will be the one the likes of Ermal Meta and Moro win Sanremo with (or whoever beats them),not La Forza.

  4. I’m having reservations about this move but I’m considering just laying La Forza quite heavily in the Eesti Laul outright. Bold, I know. It’s true that nothing else convincingly beats it, but it doesn’t sound like anything that’s won the competition before, at least not since Urban Symphony. Radio-friendly stuff wins Eesti Laul, in spite of its reputation in the ESC fandom for cool alternative music, so every alternative to La Forza is attractively priced right now.

    In her favour, Elina actually presented Eesti Laul last year, I’ve found out, so she is known, and she speaks both Estonian and Russian. Being on hosting duty previously might have earned her some favour in the office. Tanja was a Russian speaker as well remember, so I don’t think there’s any animosity against the Eesti-Ruski minority, just the Russian state itself if anything.

    Estonia celebrates the centenary of its creation this year too, which does make me wonder why ETV wouldn’t put forward a better selection of candidates, or if someone behind the scenes wants to make sure La Forza wins, why they wouldn’t go for something more “Estonian” as you’d think would be their duty as a national broadcaster. Mind you, there are more Estonian language entries than usual this year, they’re just all really weird.

    • I havent bothered with EL for betting this year and its usually a very happy hunting ground.The problem is the lack of quality and popular names.I could of seen Elina took down if we has had someone like Karl Taukar or Getter Jaani who i expected this year,but we dont.ER are doing everything to get her the win and it looks like no super final.I follow a few cross market stats for EL every year and the main one gives the 6 most popular songs in Estonia over a rolling month.One or more EL songs always make it into there and if you dont you dont win.Birgit for instance was in no1 in that but an outsider with the bookies.Last year Laura was no1,Kerli entered at 6 but fell straight out.
      This year at the moment Stig is at no 2,Elina no 5 nobody else has entered.See how that goes after the semis.If it was a superfinal id say Stig was a big danger to Elina,but without one,much less.
      Might be better to take her on at ESC instead.

      • Interesting info, thanks for that. When you say the most popular songs in Estonia over a rolling month, how is that measured? Sales, airplay, streaming, charts?

        • Its mostly from radio play requests,where listeners give love+ or not – and a couple of other things like number of radio plays.Its very robust.Iv never seen a winner for a long time who doesnt make it into the top 6 and stay there.

    • Well, having now seen La Forza performed live, I’m glad I didn’t lay her to win Eesti Laul. Stig’s entry is overwhelmingly boring. He could still take it, but otherwise I have to concede. Elina’s live vocal was faultless. The staging is very good but nothing we haven’t seen before. I’m not the least bit convinced Estonia are heading for victory in Lisbon, but I think she’s got Eesti Laul sewn up.

      Really like Iiris though, I’d be thrilled to see Estonia send that.

  5. I forgot Stig’s as soon as I heard it. La Forza very impressive. But not the vote magnet of Il Volo. Can a female opera soloist win ESC (assuming she wins EL)?

    • The stats i follow every year in Estonia has seen Elina drop out of the top 10 most popular songs in Estonia after her performance.She was nowhere,went to first for two days,then down to 9th.After the performance she dropped out.
      In every year iv backed on EL,(a lot) the winner has never ever not being doing very well in these stats.Usually they will be at 1-3 most of the time and hold the top 5 all the time.
      However nobody else from EL is in the top 10 apart from Stig,but hes floating around 8th.
      All this points to the fact EL is lacking the big popular artists.Elina might end up 12th in my stats,but 12th is a long way ahead of everyone else this year.
      It does point to the fact the song is a load of old tosh though,Elina looks dead between the eyes and that it has zero chance of winning ESC unless we get no quality songs,nobody improves,and Elina finds a way to look human.
      Iiris was far superior to her.Might the jury go for her?,id love it if they did.

      • Jury might go for Iiris, but she’ll bomb with televotes. I think she was a jury save to begin with.

        Watching the whole show, Elina came off as very likeable and animated. She’s more static and refined in her performance, but I wouldn’t say robotic. I’d rather she went with understated than overacted, but that’s personal preference. There are certainly things to be fixed and worked on, but considering the weak competition, she’s probably got the televote in the bag. Stig was off tune half the time and looked even more tired than usual, Vaje had weak vocals and aimless staging. They need to step up their game considerably to have any chance of winning.

        I don’t think Elina will win Eurovision, but she’s one of the few who might reach the final at least. With a stronger singer, Home could do well, but I don’t think juries would appreciate Stig’s weak off key vocals. Same with Laura, better vocals and staging would be a must.

        • I agree Elina is almost certain to win,but thats more to do with the fact there is simply no competition.The stats i follow have an almost 100% record of showing who is going to win the televote.The year Birgit won she was no 1 or 2 the whole EL season (outsider with bookies).Last year Laura was 1 and 2 all the way from the semi onwards,Kerli entered at 8 for a week then fell away.
          Now Elina will probably run away with the televote,but my stats say that outside of EL Estonians arent interested in listening to her song.My stats are showing the most wanted song in Estonia right now is Aeg by Ott Lepland,and 2nd (and the most wanted for the last month) is Soovin Head by Tanel Padar.If these were in EL id be backing them to beat Elina.

      • That’ll explain why Estonia are starting to drift on Betfair Exchange.

      • Which chart is is, Durham? Thanks!

        • Its a few Estonian charts i put together squall,i dont want to give them away as most years they provide the winner,or at the very least the main challengers and have been very profitable over the years.Elina still isnt showing in them at all.Ott Lepland has been top for two weeks.Stig Rasta is in 4th place,the only EL act showing in the top 10.However most years the winner would be showing in the top 2 and there would be three or four EL acts in the top 10.I expect Elina will win easily,it could be (and how i see it) this year is simply very very weak and also the fact the favourite isnt really a radio song,its a visual package.However even if Elina wins by a very big margin in the televote Estonians arent bothered about the song outside of EL it seems,

          Running order for the final,

          1. Karl-Kristjan & Karl Killing (ft. WATEVA) „Young“

          2. Eliis Pärna ja Gerli Padar „Sky“

          3. Nika „Knock Knock“

          4. Sibyl Vane „Thousand Words“

          5. Stig Rästa „Home“

          6. Vajé „Laura (Walk With Me)“

          7. Elina Nechayeva „La forza“

          8. Frankie Animal „(Can’t Keep Calling) Misty“

          9. Iiris & Agoh „Drop That Boogie“

          10. Evestus „Welcome to my world“

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