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Saturday, May 20, 2006


Eurovision finals are tonight. I don't know anything about Eurovision other than Abba's "Waterloo." Times have changed:

THE Eurovision Song Contest is usually the home of saccharine-sweet pop, appalling fashion and funky dance moves.

But this year a different style of music will crash the contest.

A masked death-metal band called Lordi...are attempting to win for Finland.

The five piece - Amen the unstoppable mummy, Enary the manipulative valkyrie, Kalma the biker zombie, Kita the alien manbeast and group leader Lordi - will perform Hard Rock Hallelujah clad in gruesome costumes and monstrous masks....


Following Friday's dress rehearsal, the Maltasong Board decided to make some modifications to the clothes Fabrizio will be wearing for the final on Saturday night.

In fact, with just a few hours to go before the Eurovision Song Contest goes live, it has been decided that Fabrizio will not be wearing the brown waist coat which was part of the original costume. The rose has also been removed and now Fabrizio sports a white shirt which produced a much better result on stage. Everyone is in agreement that Fabrizio now looks perfect on stage.

Excuse me while I bang my head against the wall. If I were a betting man, I'd be a betting man:

The bookmakers' favourites are currently Sweden, Greece, Bosnia and Russia.

But everything's getting ready for tonight:

The organisers of this year's contest have faithfully subscribed to a Eurovision tradition of devil-may-care aesthetics -- the opening ceremony features a huge golden globe representing the Greek sun, floating waves, and a duo of hosts suspended from the ceiling.

At least 18,000 spectators and over 2,000 accredited media are expected to attend the final that opens at the Olympic Stadium Complex at 10:00 pm (1900 GMT), and will be broadcast all the way to Australia.

Among the 24 participants are all-time leaders Ireland -- who have seven titles but haven't won in a decade -- Sweden, and a bevy of countries emerging from the breakup of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia.

Viewers from 35 countries in Europe, plus Armenia, Israel and Turkey will be voting by telephone or SMS message to a central database in Cologne, Germany.

But politics can intervene:

Serbia-Montenegro will be sitting out the contest -- but will retain its right to vote -- after the separate Serbian and Montenegrin television networks failed to agree on a song to send to Athens.

The dispute has come as Montenegro prepares to hold a referendum on May 21, the day after the final, on whether it wants full independence from Serbia.

And is someone covering Clapton? Probably not.

The top-five picks include...the folk ballad 'Layla' from Bosnia-Hercegovina.

I guess it's the unplugged version. How do you say "got me on my knees" in Bosnian?

I will be in Hollywood (of all places) today, but if you want to follow along, go here. If you speak English. If you speak French, go here. You'll see the ten finalists:

18 mai 2006

Félicitations ! Voici les 10 pays qui se sont qualifiés lors de la demi-finale pour la finale le 20 mai

La Russie
L'ARY Macédoine
Bosnie & Herzegovine
La Lituanie
La Finlande
La Suède
La Turquie

Bonne luck, Lordi. Or, as Tep puts it:

Pakollinen Lordi-ja-viisut -postaus
Filed under: Rokki — tep @ 4:33 pm
Jep. Eihän tästä aiheesta oikeasti tarvitsisi mitään sanoa - kaikki tarpeellinen hirviörokista ja banaalista viisukisasta lienee jo sanottu muualla.

Mutta ikuisena pessimistinä ennustan, että Lordin sijoitus finaalissa on… kuudes. Voittohan olisi tottakai kiva, mutta ajatelkaas jos se tapahtuisikin - seuraavat kisat pidettäisiin sitten täällä. Ja sitten saisi lopulta hävetä oikein kunnolla, kun YLE pistäisi parastaan kisoja järjestäessään. Uh huh.

Jep. Uh huh. The rest is beyond me. But this semi-illustrates a point. Look at this list of the top 10:

Bosnia and Herzegovina - Hari Mata Hari - Lejla (Layla)
Norway - Christine Guldbrandsen - Alvedansen (The Elf Dance)
Romania - Mihai Trăistariu - Tornerò (I'll Return)
Finland - Lordi - Hard Rock Hallelujah
Russia - Dima Bilan - Never Let You Go
Germany - Texas Lightning - No No Never
Lithuania - LT United - We Are The Winners
Croatia - Severina - Moja štikla (My Stiletto)
Ireland - Brian Kennedy - Every Song Is A Cry For Love
Greece - Anna Vissi - Everything

Note that the Greek, Lithuanian, German, Russian, and Finnish entries appear to be in English (as was the old winner "Waterloo"), and that the German and Lithuanian band names are even English. I'm sure this causes some consternation in the minds of some.

From the Ontario Empoblog (Latest OVVA news here)

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