Eurovision Song Contest

Tuesday 19 May 2015, 19:00 GMT

Following Conchita Wurst's win last year, Vienna, Austria is the host city of the Eurovision Song Contest in 2015. This year's favourites are Sweden and Italy, but can one-time-only entrants Australia take Europe's greatest prize "Down Under"?

Noelinho (18:48:13 GMT)

Oh look, it's Eurovision time again!

Connor (18:50:32 GMT)

Never mind politics, this is what really gets me pumped up! ;)

Ryan (18:51:23 GMT)

Nine minutes!

Noelinho (18:59:29 GMT)

Right, I've made it - phew!

Noelinho (19:03:07 GMT)

Aha, an orchestra spotted!

Connor (19:05:28 GMT)

Dave Arch and his band got a trip out ;)

Noelinho (19:05:52 GMT)

Pretty sure Armenia are using last year's costume again.

Will^ (19:07:55 GMT)

Evening. Dunno how much of the semis I'll catch live - midweek busy-ness :)

Noelinho (19:08:05 GMT)

This is a dull opening.

Ryan (19:10:23 GMT)

Never understood the appeal of the 'walk of nations', just get to the songs...

Noelinho (19:12:21 GMT)

Yay, the UK's in the final!

Noelinho (19:13:28 GMT)

Moldova first up. I do like this, but will anyone remember them in an hour?

Noelinho (19:14:56 GMT)

Oh dear, this is a bit dated on stage. Too much plastic too.

Ryan (19:15:29 GMT)

Well it fits in with the song, really, all very dated.

Noelinho (19:17:09 GMT)

Moldova's chances: cardiac arrest.

Noelinho (19:18:01 GMT)

Next up: Armenia.

Noelinho (19:20:50 GMT)

I do love the effects on stage for this one.

Noelinho (19:21:08 GMT)

It's a bit simple though.

Ryan (19:21:34 GMT)

Not as bad as I thought it was going to be.

Noelinho (19:21:51 GMT)

Will it qualify? Not convinced. Pretty sure the next one will though… Belgium up next.

Noelinho (19:23:39 GMT)

This is a lot better than last year's entry from what looked like Paul Bearer singing about his mother which Kane had presumably buried somewhere.

Noelinho (19:25:26 GMT)

Yeah, I don't love it, but a lot of people do.

Noelinho (19:25:48 GMT)

The Netherlands next. I really hope it qualifies. It is nice. But they don't have a great record.

Ryan (19:25:56 GMT)

Last years was horrifically creepy. I really enjoy this years, very unconventinal.

Connor (19:26:10 GMT)

I like Belgium. Unique style

Noelinho (19:28:11 GMT)

After the last two years' entries, this is pretty lightweight.

Noelinho (19:29:07 GMT)

Why, indeed.

Noelinho (19:30:00 GMT)

Finland - sure fire qualifier.

Ryan (19:33:42 GMT)

I don't think it will do as well as some think, but I certainly hope it'll get into the final.

Noelinho (19:35:07 GMT)

Yes, I don't think it will do very well in the final, but it's distinctive, so it will qualify without bother, I think.

Noelinho (19:36:16 GMT)

Greece. Poor. Piss poor. Dire. Hope it doesn't qualify.

Noelinho (19:39:12 GMT)

No, this is going to qualify, isn't it?

Ryan (19:39:14 GMT)

Eurovision ballad by the numbers.

Noelinho (19:40:54 GMT)

Estonia will qualify. Top five in the final? Possibly.

Noelinho (19:42:05 GMT)

I like the staging. It makes it a bit more personal.

Noelinho (19:42:18 GMT)

It is a bit cold though.

Connor (19:43:40 GMT)

Like Estonia

Ryan (19:44:27 GMT)

Yes. That was so much better than Eesti Laul. Staging was amazing.

Noelinho (19:44:48 GMT)

FYR Macedonia. Most people have this down as finishing last. We'll see.

Noelinho (19:46:52 GMT)

This doesn't really sell well on stage. Slow, nothing to take your mind away from it. Can't see this qualifying at all.

Ryan (19:47:41 GMT)

Thought it might be in with a chance of qualifying beforehand but after, no way surely.

Noelinho (19:49:26 GMT)

Serbia now. I didn't have this down as qualifying, because I don't really know what to expect.

Ryan (19:51:45 GMT)

Well we're seeing that again on Saturday.

Noelinho (19:51:54 GMT)

I didn't really like that. It didn't seem very good to me.

Connor (19:52:18 GMT)

It'll get tele votes but juries will be tough...

Ryan (19:52:38 GMT)

I'm fairly sure I only like it because it went mental in the middle.

Noelinho (19:52:49 GMT)

Hungary next. I think this will qualify.

Ryan (19:55:29 GMT)

Good God this is tedious.

Noelinho (19:55:45 GMT)

Beautiful.

Noelinho (19:56:31 GMT)

Belarus. Think it could sneak in.

Noelinho (19:57:57 GMT)

Or, maybe not.

Connor (20:00:10 GMT)

On a night of ballads and some madness this is nice and catchy

Noelinho (20:00:30 GMT)

Russia always qualifies. No change tonight, surely.

Ryan (20:01:09 GMT)

Too good a song not to.

Noelinho (20:03:05 GMT)

Yes. Comfortable qualifier.

Noelinho (20:08:14 GMT)

Denmark. On the cusp tonight? This is the kind of thing that usually qualifies, and then scrapes a few points at the bottom in the final.

Ryan (20:09:00 GMT)

I've always really had this down as a non-qualifier based on the song, but it is Denmark and a Nordic country failing to qualify is remarkably rare.

Noelinho (20:09:40 GMT)

It's like most Swiss entries. They often qualify. It goes late too. I think it might be enough.

Noelinho (20:12:03 GMT)

Albania. I don't remember this at all.

Noelinho (20:13:47 GMT)

It's awful. That's why I don't remember it.

Connor (20:15:06 GMT)

Dear oh dear

Noelinho (20:15:24 GMT)

Romania will surely qualify.

Ryan (20:18:24 GMT)

Nailed on qualifier.

Noelinho (20:19:38 GMT)

Georgia last up.

Noelinho (20:21:04 GMT)

Follows a decent line of entries like this from Georgia.

Noelinho (20:23:34 GMT)

So, taking a stab at qualifiers: BEL, FIN, GRE, EST, HUN, RUS, DEN, ROM, GEO, SRB.

Noelinho (20:24:45 GMT)

I'm voting for Mirjam.

Ryan (20:25:26 GMT)

I think I only disagree with you on Denmark, probably swap them with Armenia. Though, wouldn't be shocked if there is a few surprises.

Noelinho (20:29:49 GMT)

Any other predictions for who will qualify?

Connor (20:49:27 GMT)

My prediction is Russia, Estonia, Belgium, Georgia, Hungary, Denmark, Belarus, Greece, Serbia and Romania. Definitely tight at the top 10 mark

Noelinho (20:56:03 GMT)

We have a result!

Noelinho (20:56:38 GMT)

First country through: Albania!

Noelinho (20:56:56 GMT)

Second country: Armenia.

Noelinho (20:57:05 GMT)

Russia through.

Noelinho (20:57:17 GMT)

Romania through.

Noelinho (20:57:26 GMT)

Hungary qualify. This is quick.

Noelinho (20:57:35 GMT)

Greece qualify.

Noelinho (20:57:45 GMT)

Estonia! Woohoo!

Noelinho (20:58:05 GMT)

Georgia. Knew it.

Noelinho (20:58:21 GMT)

Serbia. Why?

Noelinho (20:58:28 GMT)

Last spot: Belgium.

Ryan (20:58:43 GMT)

No Finland!

Noelinho (21:02:34 GMT)

Well, a couple of surprises there.

Noelinho (21:04:14 GMT)

Oh well, there's another semi final on Thursday! Sweden, Norway and Slovenia are all in that, and Lithuania too! So it should be a good one!

Ryan (21:04:58 GMT)

I'd say a few surprises, got 9/10 in the end though. Didn't think Albania would qualify after what was a weak performance, and honestly had Finland nailed on, perhaps punk is a stretch too far for Eurovision fans. Moldova, Netherlands, Macedonia I'm hardly shocked with, not really with Denmark either. Think Belarus had a good chance with their song but ruined it with a very weak staging performance. Overall, I can't complain too much.

Connor (21:05:33 GMT)

Albania really got bailed out by neighbours and a good slot. Well, unless the jury final was a LOT better

Ryan (21:06:37 GMT)

That's a very valid factor, and from what I had read Albania had been fairly impressive in rehearsals as well, so maybe it was a one off. Certainly the late slot helped too.

Noelinho (21:06:51 GMT)

I have Draugiem open at the moment (Latvia's main social media network) and Aminata, their entry, is being heavily advertised.

Noelinho (21:08:46 GMT)

Right, same time, same place on Thursday?

Ryan (21:09:10 GMT)

Wouldn't miss it if I tried.

Connor (21:09:12 GMT)

For sure, let the super week continue. Later folks :)

Noelinho (19:02:42 GMT)

Anyone around for the second semi final?

Ryan (19:03:59 GMT)

I'm alive!

Noelinho (19:04:41 GMT)

These introductions are tedious.

Ryan (19:06:07 GMT)

Looks like they are struggling with matching the camera to the right countries coming on.

Noelinho (19:06:29 GMT)

The countries were introduced out of order.

Noelinho (19:10:16 GMT)

Lithuania first. Monika's great.

Connor (19:10:17 GMT)

Ireland in the death slot... oh dear

Noelinho (19:11:08 GMT)

Yeah, and Molly hasn't been great in rehearsals.

Noelinho (19:12:16 GMT)

Beautiful staging, upbeat, I want to see this again.

Ryan (19:14:49 GMT)

Lithuania have a canny knack of qualifying, or getting close to qualifying like last year. I think they'll do it. Really hope Ireland qualify, I love this song.

Noelinho (19:15:26 GMT)

Molly's problem is that people want more than a performance,

Noelinho (19:19:05 GMT)

Ireland could qualify with that, but a really bad slot.

Noelinho (19:19:43 GMT)

San Marino now. It's about 12 years out of date. Incredibly amateur.

Ryan (19:20:12 GMT)

It's so out of date it's older than the people singing it.

Connor (19:22:11 GMT)

Come back Valentina...

Noelinho (19:22:24 GMT)

It almost is, Ryan.

Noelinho (19:24:06 GMT)

This song sounds a lot like the song with the skater from last year or the year before...

Ryan (19:28:47 GMT)

I think Georgia's won the 'Warrior' off.

Noelinho (19:29:01 GMT)

Not wild about this Maltese entry. I think it will struggle.

Noelinho (19:30:43 GMT)

Lithuania easily the best so far for me.

Ryan (19:31:34 GMT)

Would say Lithuania is the only one that will qualify, maybe, Montenegro too.

Noelinho (19:36:00 GMT)

Well, Norway will definitely qualify!

Ryan (19:37:10 GMT)

Oh I just love that song.

Noelinho (19:37:53 GMT)

It's wonderful.bunlike this next poor excuse for an entry.

Noelinho (19:39:50 GMT)

It's worse than I remember.

Ryan (19:40:19 GMT)

I like that they added Jon Henrik's jojk from Melodifestivalen as backing vocalists.

Ryan (19:40:40 GMT)

And by like, I mean generally indifferent.

Noelinho (19:41:50 GMT)

Glad to see the Czech Republic back. Don't remember the song at all though.

Ryan (19:42:24 GMT)

Well it's the best song they've ever sent. Which doesn't say much at all.

Noelinho (19:45:43 GMT)

This middle section isn't wowing me, if I'm honest.

Connor (19:46:04 GMT)

Been pretty meh in general so far

Noelinho (19:47:08 GMT)

It's gone a bit Cheesecake.

Ryan (19:49:30 GMT)

Yeah I'm putting that down as a qualifier.

Noelinho (19:49:48 GMT)

Latvia!

Noelinho (19:51:36 GMT)

I love the costume, the staging and the voice. This is fantastic. Latvia could do really well for once.

Connor (19:54:02 GMT)

That deserves to be in the final

Noelinho (19:54:09 GMT)

Azerbaijan. Which country did they buy their entry from this year?

Ryan (19:55:41 GMT)

I don't think they'd dare shop anywhere but Sweden.

Noelinho (19:58:30 GMT)

Iceland next. Want her to do well, but I've heard the staging isn't very good.

Ryan (20:00:06 GMT)

It's good job they asked Hera Bjork to be one of the backing singers.

Noelinho (20:02:07 GMT)

Yes, but she's very sweet. Oh well.

Noelinho (20:04:33 GMT)

Ah, Sweden. Not the best song, but very good. Probably the best staging. Put together, very good indeed.

Ryan (20:08:15 GMT)

In a year of... few gimmicks... Sweden certainly brought on of the most imaginative.

Noelinho (20:08:49 GMT)

It really sticks with you. The rest of Melfest was rubbish. But there was one gem. Good job they picked it.

Noelinho (20:14:04 GMT)

Cyprus. Different enough to get through? Or too bland?

Noelinho (20:16:01 GMT)

Hmm. Maybe it will..

Connor (20:18:44 GMT)

Air Violin is a new one...

Noelinho (20:20:27 GMT)

A natural progression from Epic Sax Guy. But he still wins.

Ryan (20:20:36 GMT)

Wish they'd got rid of the air violinist but alas, cracking song still.

Ryan (20:21:03 GMT)

Of course Epic Sax Guy (and rest of act), failed to qualify from this years Moldovan national final.

Noelinho (20:24:47 GMT)

Right, so who were your favourites?

Ryan (20:30:09 GMT)

Norway (obviously), Slovenia two of my biggest favourites anyway and tonight only helped that. I liked Ireland but gosh, not going to qualify. Must admit I had a soft spot for Israel, Sweden will qualify no matter what I think. Struggled with thinking who will qualify though, put down eight of which about four I'm confident about... those being Norway, Azerbaijan, Sweden and Slovenia. Would be fairly confident in saying Switzerland, San Marino not qualifying. I like Ireland so I remain optimistic.

Noelinho (20:36:04 GMT)

I'm busy voting at the moment.

Noelinho (20:44:02 GMT)

So, trying to remember who I put would qualify: Lithuania, Montenegro, Norway, Israel, Slovenia, Sweden, Latvia, Czech Republic, Azerbaijan, Cyprus.

Ryan (20:44:28 GMT)

I think I basically have the exact same as you.

Noelinho (20:47:02 GMT)

If those are the ten, I'll eat Paddy Ashdown's hat.

Noelinho (20:55:48 GMT)

First through: Lithuania!

Noelinho (20:56:05 GMT)

Second: Poland!

Noelinho (20:56:22 GMT)

Third: Slovenia!

Noelinho (20:56:37 GMT)

Fourth: Sweden

Noelinho (20:56:51 GMT)

Fifth: Norway

Noelinho (20:57:00 GMT)

Sixth: Montenegro

Noelinho (20:57:10 GMT)

Seventh: Cyprus

Noelinho (20:57:26 GMT)

Eighth: Azerbaijan

Noelinho (20:57:53 GMT)

Ninth: Latvia

Noelinho (20:58:25 GMT)

Tenth: Israel

Ryan (20:59:40 GMT)

Got Czech Republic wrong instead of Poland, can't deny the influence of running last/being in a wheelchair.

Noelinho (21:02:22 GMT)

Yes, I was torn on those two. Oh well. It was a hard semi to pick.

Connor (21:03:39 GMT)

It was very hard to call, semi 1 was clearer. They release the results late on Saturday night usually?

Ryan (21:04:17 GMT)

Hard semi to pick but we both did quite well... And yes, usually straight after the final.

Connor (21:06:06 GMT)

Right now, i fancy Russia for the win. But i haven't seen Italy yet, really keen to see how they do on Saturday night.

Noelinho (19:01:40 GMT)

Woohoo! Eurovsion final, here we are!

Ryan (19:03:55 GMT)

Yaaaay, it's if Christmas was a song contest.

Noelinho (19:04:41 GMT)

Haha, it is a bit. I can't decide who will win tonight.

Ryan (19:06:39 GMT)

No, not at all. Thinking between Sweden or Italy. But still think Australia, Belgium, Russia (my money hopes so), Latvia... Estonia could all do it.

Connor (19:08:33 GMT)

Worst miming ever there

Noelinho (19:08:40 GMT)

I don't think Estonia can win. The others, to varying degrees, perhaps could. Latvia unlikely.

Noelinho (19:11:58 GMT)

It really was terrible miming!

Will^ (19:13:46 GMT)

Evening all :)

Noelinho (19:14:17 GMT)

Evening Will.

Will^ (19:14:29 GMT)

Your times are all an hour out (always debugging) ;)

Noelinho (19:14:46 GMT)

I'm watching with two friends from Texas tonight. This is new for them.

Ryan (19:15:04 GMT)

If we stick to GMT it'll all be done by midnight at least.

Noelinho (19:17:40 GMT)

Oh, this is a cool segment.

Noelinho (19:20:29 GMT)

I hope we get longer to vote tonight. I ran out of time on Thursday.

Noelinho (19:21:59 GMT)

Graham's off to a very sarcy start.

Will^ (19:23:23 GMT)

Well this is definitely my favourite so far!

Will^ (19:25:50 GMT)

Do you know how many countries are voting tonight?

Ryan (19:26:28 GMT)

Just the 40.

Noelinho (19:26:40 GMT)

40, I think? 13 were eliminated in the semis

Will^ (19:27:51 GMT)

Cool - just setting up my spreadsheet to track where the winning line is during the voting.

Noelinho (19:28:32 GMT)

That sounds a cool spreadsheet. Can you send it when the night is done?

Will^ (19:30:24 GMT)

It is not a high tech thing - I just enter the current number of countries to declare and the leader's score, and it tells me the max points remaining, and where the "still in contention" line is.

Noelinho (19:31:22 GMT)

Still sounds cool. And collaboration could make it even better for next year :-)

Noelinho (19:32:31 GMT)

Dammit, this has a catchy tune.

Ryan (19:33:20 GMT)

It has all my favourite lyrics in it.

Noelinho (19:35:07 GMT)

What, "let me show you Tel Aviv"?

Ryan (19:37:05 GMT)

That and 'Okay, gotta go, three minutes, bye bye'

Will^ (19:38:35 GMT)

I've had this in my head all week, and I dunno where I heard it originally

Ryan (19:41:09 GMT)

Uhh yeah that was about as bad as I was expecting.

Noelinho (19:41:23 GMT)

I'm with you on that.

Connor (19:42:49 GMT)

I'll give the UK their dues on the staging, liked it. Shame about the rest...

Will^ (19:43:12 GMT)

I'll send the spreadsheet anyway. I could create something really comprehensive but only ever think about it during the final every year - maybe I'll tackle that as my summer project :) (remind me I said this)

Connor (19:48:08 GMT)

That kiss was a bit longer than the semi final!?

Ryan (19:48:37 GMT)

Umm, get a room guys.

Noelinho (19:49:48 GMT)

That was great fun.

Will^ (19:52:12 GMT)

This is the next country, yes? 2 songs for the price of 1!!

Noelinho (19:53:23 GMT)

Wow, Serbia's converted me tonight.

Noelinho (19:58:39 GMT)

Can I vote for Mirjam?

Connor (19:58:54 GMT)

More impressed with Norway tonight than the semi

Will^ (20:00:55 GMT)

This white-on-black stuff is clever

Noelinho (20:02:53 GMT)

Fantastic song, that. Hope Måns does really well.

Will^ (20:08:07 GMT)

I can see the Aussies doing well because of the novelty factor

Will^ (20:09:40 GMT)

This one has been playing on one of the menus of Virgin onDemand for like the past month - another one that is already stuck in my head

Ryan (20:10:50 GMT)

Not sure if the novelty factor of being Australia will help or hinder them.

Connor (20:11:51 GMT)

I think the novelty will only help... people thinking one off chance to vote for them

Noelinho (20:15:01 GMT)

Belgium is winning me over. Not sure it's a first time hit though.

Noelinho (20:25:02 GMT)

Lack of comments perhaps indicating this is a dull section of the final.

Ryan (20:26:50 GMT)

Austria-Greece-Montenegro-Germany-Poland was always going to kill any mood.

Will^ (20:27:19 GMT)

I'm currently racing the program to have a functioning score sheet before it is needed

Connor (20:32:24 GMT)

Enjoyed Germany, my first listen of it

Ryan (20:33:00 GMT)

Better than how I remembered it. Less shouty.

Noelinho (20:34:10 GMT)

I think Germany will be higher than the bottom five.

Noelinho (20:41:13 GMT)

The top Baltic is a hard one to pick tonight...

Ryan (20:44:06 GMT)

I think Romania could be a surprise top 5.

Noelinho (20:46:21 GMT)

There's a lot of competition for the top five. Maybe top tennis more realistic.

Will^ (20:46:29 GMT)

Ahhh - little red riding hood has come to sing us a song

Noelinho (20:52:53 GMT)

Really cliche, that was.

Ryan (20:53:00 GMT)

I think voting fatigue may be a big factor in this final.

Noelinho (21:05:30 GMT)

I hate to say it, but I have Russia as my winner.

Connor (21:07:21 GMT)

Me too. But lets see what the Italians do...

Connor (21:08:58 GMT)

How did Albania make the final!?

Will^ (21:09:07 GMT)

The Russian song sounded like they had deconstructed last year's winner, and written a sequel

Noelinho (21:13:32 GMT)

I think it's Italy or Russia.

Will^ (21:14:31 GMT)

Voting spreadsheet complete :) Do you want a copy now?

Ryan (21:20:10 GMT)

I still think Sweden are in with a shout, that was still an impressive performance even if it does feel like it happened last month.

Will^ (21:22:11 GMT)

Russia / Sweden / Spain / Italy those will be up there

Connor (21:31:36 GMT)

I'm thinking Russia/Sweden/Italy/Australia/Belgium as a top 5

Will^ (21:32:20 GMT)

This drum-heavy section reminds me of the Bruno Mars SuperBowl HT show

Ryan (21:35:31 GMT)

I can't get over how Lithuania willingly just missed two lines out for a kiss.

Will^ (21:38:05 GMT)

How did Nigella Lawson get chosen to read out our choices?!

Ryan (21:39:01 GMT)

Picked the name out of the hat named 'random celebrities'

Will^ (21:40:14 GMT)

Well she is fairly random

Will^ (21:48:14 GMT)

no hablo espanol

Connor (22:04:07 GMT)

Shaping up nicely so far

Connor (23:06:08 GMT)

Cheers for all the chat and insight as usual folks. A good final :)

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