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I'll update this with later thoughts, for better or worse. ^_^; These are just very quick notes - don't expect creative writing. Or coherency. =:) Ones I'll consider voting for, I've listed in italics.

1. Lithuania
Gentle piano opening, reminiscent of Freddy Mercury, but segued into a fairly routine ballad. Inoffensive.

2. Israel
Quite upbeat duet - mostly poppy, little bit of an edge. Not inspiring, but enjoyable.

3. France
Broody, moody, flat. Cute dress.

4. Sweden
Promising opening, not bad song - disco opera affair. Pretty fun, and whilst the song could be better, a lovely voice.

5. Croatia
Nicely soulful, somewhat melancholic, but didn't catch me.

6. Portugal
Traditionally inspired, lively - good stuff!

7. Iceland
Quite routine chart stuff.

8. Greece
Neat dancefloor number. Cute guy.

9. Armenia
Another with ethnic roots, beautiful costumes. Pretty good.

10. Russia
Good upbeat stuff, neat background video of the singer aging.

11. Azerbaijan
Tedious Top 40 stuff with a club beat.

12. Bosnia & Herzegovina
Downtempo sequel to Azerbaijan. Fair enough.

13. Moldova
Traditional, modernised. Fun, but not really a winner.

14. Malta
Power ballad of tedium. Pleasant enough, but oddly unexciting.

15. Estonia
Sextet akin to Bond, with a nicely moody, engaging piece of faux classical-club. Maybe not my favorite, but I'd be happy to see them win. +1 shiny.

16. Denmark
Ronan Keating ballad. Decent enough, but about as homogenised as it comes.

17. Germany
Sassy, with a burlesque edge. Definitely fun; maybe not revolutionary, but I'd consider buying it. +1 shiny.

18. Turkey
Another with an ethnic edge, but completely failed to grab me. Pleasant enough.

19. Albania
Decent bit of mainstream pop for a club market. Enjoyable. But teal was never meant to be the color of zentai.

20. Norway
This is what to play if you really despise your neighbors.

21. Ukraine
Interestingly Barbarella-like stage show. Enjoyable clubstuff - fairly OTT, but I'd happily listen to it again. Nice bassline, bit Saintly.

22. Romania
Distilled unoriginality. Perfectly competently performed, and devoid of any soul.

23. United Kingdom
Exceptionally professional, soporific ballad. Nauseatingly tired composition. Only one I've had to mute.

24. Finland
Power hair of the 80s, represent! Generic club reject song.

25. Spain
Yet another attempt at a club track, this time string-backed. Good enough background music.

Well, there we go - vote early and often. In my case, Portugal, Germany, and Ukraine. ^_^
 
 
 
 
 
 
Ah, that's where the headphones and iPlayer come in. ^_^ I started off using the Eurovision raw feed, but it wasn't really working for me this year - it wasn't performing any framedropping, so the video soon lagged badly behind the audio. Still, I'll give GN credit for his commentary - actually quite enjoyable. Much as I adore Terry, he seemed to be getting quite curmudgeonly in the last couple years, openly mocking acts he didn't like, rather than perhaps giving a playful nudge.

Still, as one might expect, my votes ensured doom for all concerned, and it looks like both of the worst in recent Eurovision history - Norway and the UK - are going to do well, with Norway looking unassailable at this point. Ah well - at least a Norwegian-hosted Eurovision should be fun, even if anyone will have to try extraordinarily hard to surpass the sheer spectacle of Moscow's show, which included aerial swimming pools with dancers gradually descending from the stadium ceiling. ^_^;