An excerpt from the music video for the song "Unicorn" performed by Noa Kirel (courtesy here 11)
That's it, it happened: all the countries participating in Eurovision 2023 that will be held in Liverpool have published their songs, and we can turn to check what competition awaits our Noa Kirel.
Fortunately, only 37 countries will participate in the competition this year and Israel will compete in the small semi-final - only 15 songs will compete for the top ten places.
If you are past the legal age for TikTok, this will probably be the hardest Eurovision to watch, on the verge of unbearable.
If in previous years we talked about songs that are a great opportunity for a pee break, this year you have more than enough time to spend in the bathroom.
A random test devoid of empirical characteristics shows that it is the younger ones who tend to write things like "What a perfect Eurovision, I put so many songs in my playlist", so it will be interesting to see if a song will win this year, or if it is attention deficit disorder.
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Kirel (Photo: Elad Malka)
Last year I wrote, and here is the full and exact quote: "What. This. Thing. This. Yes, a period after each word to emphasize the shock and shock. A collection of generic songs at best, lousy at worst, anesthetizing in most cases."
If only Yaniv of 2022 had known what was waiting for him in 2023, he would not have wasted this sentence even then.
With all the difficulty involved, I sat down to listen to the songs and watch the clips, to try to understand how high Noa's chances are of breaking into the top ten and returning Israel to the Eurovision final after a one-year hiatus.
Let us know in the comments how many songs you managed to survive more than 30 seconds, and we'll guess if you're boomers or Gen Z.
(The qualification figures for the final refer to Eurovisions from 2008 onwards, when the two semi-final method was introduced. The survey data and betting agencies are correct at the time of publication of the article and may change by the time you read it).
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How is it that Israel is ranked so high in betting to win Eurovision?
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Croatia - Let 3 - Mama ŠČ!
4/12 - 33.3%
4th place in 1996 and 1999
The last time Croatia breathed final air was in 2017 and to find it in the top-10 you have to go back to 2001. After two consecutive years of generic songs reaching the place -11 In the semi-finals, Croatia changes its approach and sends a completely disrupted performance.
All the Eurovision clichés are crammed here into two minutes and 40 seconds with silly lyrics, but let's package it under the argument "protest song", and you'll get a standing ovation from the audience.
In the betting agencies, Croatia is ranked 15th in the chances of winning, and in a survey answered by more than 116 thousand surfers, the song is ranked 16th with about 1,200 votes.
If there's any justice in the world, it will be one of the five songs that won't qualify for the final, but it's absolutely a song that could end up in the top 5 in the final, and make the next Eurovision even worse.
Ireland - Wild Youth - We Are One
5/14 - 35.7%
7 wins (1970, 1980, 1987, 1992, 1993, 1994, and 1996)
: in 2007 and 2013, last place in the semi-finals in 2019 and 2021 .
The country that brought home seven trophies became the joke of the competition.
It's been three Eurovisions in a row that Ireland has not reached the final, and if they do reach the final this year, it will only happen because of the terrible crop collected from the other countries.
The words seemed to come out of the command "Write me a song that will show how we are all different but we are all alike and that there will be diversity and inclusion" given to artificial intelligence, and thus we got "Maybe you are a leader, maybe I am a freak, but tonight we are one".
For some reason they chose to cover their faces in the music video, as if the Norwegians in 2022 didn't do it better and much, much cooler.
The betting agencies rank Ireland in 25th place and the survey of surfers places the cliché in 23rd place.
Latvia - Sudden Lights - Aijā
: 3/14 - 21.4%
: winning in 2002
: in the semi-finals in 2009, 2010, 2013, 2017, and 2021 for
five consecutive Eurovisions already, Tevia is already kicked out of the competition at the semi-final stage and it seems that 2023 will not be good for them either .
In the betting agencies, Latvia is ranked in the embarrassing 35th place and in the survey of the surfers in the 25th place.
The song, which was not written specifically for Eurovision but was later sent to the local Kedem, was written as a lullaby for the difficult times we live in, and received a jungle-rock arrangement.
The band's goal, according to them, is to give viewers the feeling of a Moonskin-style live performance, but it seems that although it is a rather likable song, the end result will be different compared to the Italians.
Malta - The Busker - Dance (Our Own Party)
: 7/14 - 50%
: 2nd place in 2002 and 2005
: 3 times in 1971, 1972, and 2006
Whenever Malta doesn't send a singer who screams her soul out I'm satisfied, especially if it's not a ballad Worn to thin.
It could have been great if it was a song that was more than just cute, or if it could have been injected with charisma.
But this is a song that starts and ends at the same point, and it doesn't really go anywhere at any point.
Moldova has already done the saxophone trick twice and successfully, this time it looks like an imitation of Ali Express.
The betting agencies are not impressed and rank the Habib band in 31st place, and in the surfers' survey they are now given the last place, in their case - we will also say Habib.
Norway - Alessandra - Queen Of Kings
: 12/14 - 85.7%
: first place in 1985, 1995 and 2009
: 11 times in 1963, 1969, 1974, 1976, 1978, 1981, 1990, 1997, 2001, 2004, and 2012
What was considered one of the failed countries in Eurovision manages to reach the finals almost every year since the two halves system was introduced, and the top 10 is no stranger to her either.
If you are a fan of Festigal, this song is for you.
Dressed in a Wish-bought costume, Alessandra won the Norwegian preliminaries by a landslide and is well-liked by fans.
The agencies rank her in fourth place in the chances of winning and in the survey of the surfers she is fifth, and it seems that her place in the top 5 is guaranteed, with an asterisk.
Why an asterisk?
Because in the Norwegian era the performances were performed with auto-tune, and in the Eurovision itself the use of this tool is prohibited.
Portugal - Mimicat - Ai Coração
: 7/12 - 58%
: 1st place in 2017
: 4 times in 1964, 1974, 1997, and 2018
Portugal usually sends songs that are outdated and irrelevant to today's music, even by Eurovision standards.
If last year Portugal sent a little ballad that managed to touch even a heart made of stone like mine, this year the show is more colorful and shiny, but there is no "wow" effect here.
It will be one of the songs that may or may not make it to the finals, and no one will really care.
If this song makes it to the finals, it could easily be one of those that finish 11th out of all the qualifying countries, thus ending the evening with 0 points.
The betting agencies are not impressed and rate the song in the 26th place in the chances of winning, but in the survey of the surfers Portugal is successful and reaches the absolutely respectable 8th place.
Serbia - Luke Black - Samo Mi Se Spava
: 10/13 - 76.9%
: Winning in 2007
If when we were children we sang "I don't want to sleep", now that we are older and wiser, we can identify with the message of this year's Serbian song - "I just want to sleep".
Luke Black, who performs the song, said that he wrote the lyrics when he was sunk in bed and playing video games during the pandemic.
He says that the composition was completed in 15 minutes in Zoom with a friend from Lebanon who lives in the United States, and later friends from Canada and London also got involved.
If only he had a good voice, maybe something could be made of this song, but it is not very uplifting.
Serbia will likely see a final, but not break the scoreboard.
The betting agencies give her the 16th place and in the survey of the surfers she is in the 12th place.
Azerbaijan - TuralTuranX - Tell Me More
: 13/14 - 92.9%
: won in 2011
Azerbaijan is one of the two countries with the highest percentage of qualifying for the finals.
In fact, only in 2018, when Neta won, they failed in this task.
The Azerbaijanis like to send heavy ballads, singers and singers on the scale between screams and growls, so this year's song is very different from what they have sent so far.
This is a cute song that is very reminiscent of all the British rock compilation albums from 1997, and don't be surprised if you too start humming "Kiss Me" by Sixpence None the Richer.
The betting agencies rank Azerbaijan in 23rd place and in the survey of surfers in 22nd place, and it seems that the Azeris will do what they are best at in recent years - a final with a low position.
Czech Republic - Vesna - My Sister's Crown
: 4/9 - 44.4%
: 6th place in 2018
: in the semi-finals in 2007 and 2009
No no, this is not a song about Corona, but about her sister's crown.
Apparently her sister is the singer from Norway.
The betting agencies like this song and rate it in the 8th place in the chances of winning, the fans rate it in the 11th place in the survey of surfers.
In a year like this, this song will probably be in the finals, but it's hard to see him screwing up to the top.
It is not interesting enough, the topic is worn out, we have already heard such songs in the competition before, and there are chewing gums that have been chewed less than the message of female empowerment in Eurovision.
Finland - Käärijä - Cha Cha Cha
: 8/14 - 57.1%
: winning in 2006
: 9 times in 1963, 1965, 1968, 1980, 1982, 1990, 1992, 1996, 2009, and twice in the semi-finals in 2015 and 2019 in Tel Aviv.
"A hard week and long days ahead," sings the Finnish singer and says that only Pina Colada is in his head: "I hold the drink in both hands," and between each line in which he growls at us that he doesn't think about tomorrow as he sips another liter of the drink, his companions bark "T "Ha cha cha".
This is the kind of song that has no right to exist outside of the competition and no one would have written it if there was no Eurovision.
And for the record, everything Kariya did before the Finnish preliminaries didn't work, until he went on this circus.
For some reason, this time it works for him and in the betting agencies he is ranked second in the chances of winning.
In the amateur poll, he is in third place with more than 12,000 votes.
In my opinion, the first minute and 50 seconds are unbearable, but then it actually becomes cool and it's a shame that it's not the whole song.
Personally, I would have left this song in the semi-finals, but when the whole hall in Liverpool shouts "cha cha cha" and blows the roof to the sky,
Moldova - Pasha Parfeni - Soarele şi Luna
: 9/14 - 64.3%
: 3rd place in 2017
Pasha Parfani already participated in Eurovision 2012 held in Baku, and reached 11th place.
This year he puts on a selection of carpets from his grandmother's house, and when he is accompanied by two women with elk horns, powerful drummers and a flutist who doesn't even try to hide that it is a playback, he storms the stage.
In the betting agencies, the song is ranked 17th, in the survey of surfers only 30th, but there is a large selection of battered Eurovision clichés of the kind that make voters send a text message.
Holland - Mia Nicolai & Dion Cooper - Burning Daylight
: 8/14 - 57.1%
: Winning in 1957, 1959, 1969, 1975, and 2019 in Tel Aviv.
: 4 times in 1958, 1962, 1963, 1968, and in the semi-finals in 2011.
Two successful singers in the Netherlands teamed up for a duet they wrote together with Duncan Lawrence, the winner of the Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv.
After the moving ballad in Dutch we got last year, this year we get a cute but lackluster ballad.
19th place in the betting agencies and 20th place in the surfers' poll do not bode well for the Dutch, and they will hope to succeed in the semi-finals where only the spectators vote, and then try to impress the judges in the final.
Sweden - Loreen - Tattoo
: 13/14 - 92.9%
: 6 wins in 1974, 1984, 1991, 1999, 2012, and 2015
: in 1963 and 1977
Eurovision 2023 is on its way to becoming a historic Eurovision, and not precisely because of the amount of bad songs His.
If everything works as planned, Sweden will win for the seventh time and tie the record of wins with Ireland, and for the second time in the history of the competition an artist who has participated and won before will win, and for the first time ever it will be a singer.
All in all, there is nothing groundbreaking here: this is another version of Euphoria with elements "borrowed" from a Ukrainian singer, but here is an excellent example of the efficiency of Swedish production.
In the betting agencies, Sweden is first, as well as in the survey of surfers, and by a large margin from the rest.
Switzerland - Remo Forrer - Watergun
: 5/14 - 35.7%
: wins in 1956 and 1988.
: 5 times in 1964, 1967, 1974, 1998, 2011 and 4 times in the semi-finals in 2004, 2010, 2015, and 2016.
After many years of pre-Eurovision in a format that makes the Broadcasting Authority of the past appear as the grandeur of creation, in recent years Switzerland has switched to internal selection.
In the three competitions that have taken place since then, Switzerland has qualified for the final every year, but after two very successful years with a strong 4th place in Tel Aviv and an exciting third place in Rotterdam, last year Switzerland finished in only 17th place.
Like last year, in 2023 Switzerland sends an old-fashioned ballad of a tormented young man with a deep voice that doesn't go well with his babyface.
Of all the participants in the first semi-final, the Swiss should be the most stressed by the change in the voting system and the cancellation of the judges in the semi-final.
Last year she qualified thanks to the 5th place from the judges, compared to second to last place from the audience.
In the final, the judges gave Switzerland the 12th place, while the audience humiliated them with 0 points and last place.
This time, the agencies rank Switzerland in the surprising 14th place, but in the survey of surfers poor Remo is only ranked 31st.
Israel - Noa Kirel - Unicorn
: 9/14 - 64.3%
: four wins (1978, 1979, 1998, 2018)
We saved the best for last, Noa Kirel, Israel's representative for Eurovision, the woman who caused the greatest buzz and anticipation for this year's contest, until, of course, Lorraine came.
It seems that Europe doesn't really know how to eat the five different songs that were soldered to them for three minutes, and not necessarily in the bad sense of the phrase.
The betting agencies regularly rank Israel between 5th and 9th place, but pay attention to the survey of surfers - here Noa is ranked second.
True, by a significant margin from the Swedes, but by a larger margin than those below her.
The cliché "it's all about the live performance" has never been truer, and we can only imagine what Kyrle's crew have in store for us in Liverpool.
Another word about the betting agencies.
The agencies do not operate in all European countries and there are countries where gambling is prohibited, as is the case in Israel.
Therefore, the bets do not fully reflect the mood of all the participating countries.
In addition, the numbers between the fifth place and the 11th-12th place are very similar, so we see insignificant shifts between the places every day.
This is one of the reasons why you really shouldn't be excited by "Noa leaps to fifth place" nor should you sob at "Noa crashes to ninth place".
We will save the hysteria for changes in ratings after the rehearsals begin.
Until then, you can be good citizens and choose Israel in the surfers' survey right here, to continue to maintain the buzz around Kirel.