Considering I am reviewing the more ‘eccentric’ and off the wall entries in Eurovision, I have got to start with Latvia. Citi Zēni’s song ‘Eat Your Salad’, judging by the song title, seems to encourage healthy eating. What could possibly be wrong with that? Buckle up kiddos, you’re in for a ride. The chipper and upbeat song opens with the following lyric “instead of meat, I eat veggies and p*ssy” (the last word will be bleeped out at Eurovision). It gets worse (or better, depending on your perspective): “I like them both fresh, like them both juicy”. There are also allusions to the length of *ahem* certain genitals compared to geckos of all creatures, but I shan’t elaborate. Aside from these lyrics, the song is actually a bop: the instrumental gets stuck in your head and the message behind the song is rather admirable (save the planet).
Next up is Moldova, which never fails to deliver when it comes to odd songs that are somehow bangers: surely nobody can forget Epic Sax Guy (performing as part of The Sunstroke Project) effortlessly miming on the saxophone in 2010 and 2017?! This year it’s the turn of Zdob și Zdub to represent Moldova with the song ‘Trenuleţul’. It regales the ins and outs of a particular train route, Chisinau-Bucharest, and it cannot help but make you smile. The song declares ‘Hey ho! Let’s go. Folklore and rock ‘n’ roll’’ as its chorus before proceeding into an instrumental that you can’t help but get up and boogie to. The story-telling is delightful and is just off-kilter enough to make this entry eccentric in the best kind of way.
The final act that more than earns a badge of eccentricity in my opinion is Norway’s act. Subwoolfer appear on stage in suits, trainers, yellow wolf masks and sunglasses. Even before starting their song, they draw your attention, albeit in a way that has you questioning “am I hallucinating or is this real?” It only gets weirder after that. The song itself is called ‘Give That Wolf a Banana’ and seems to be a retelling of Red Riding Hood. The chorus is repeated atop of hypnotic modern beat, the lyrics being “before that wolf eats my Grandma, give that wolf a banana”. I must admit their act draws the eye, although I don’t think they are the first port of call concerning wolf attacks…
The aforementioned acts are just a select sample of the 40 total entries that have qualified for Eurovision. Some will make it to the Grand Final, some will not. The first semi-final will take place on the 10th May, with the second semi-final on the 12th May and the Grand Final on the 14th May.