The voting for the annual ESC 250 celebration closed on 5th December 2021, and now we have a nervous wait to find out the results!
While we wait to find our the official results, members of the TES team will be sharing their votes for this year and explaining why they have voted the way they have. Next up to reveal their votes is Isabelle.
Why I voted how I voted
I contemplated going for a proper all-time top ten for my first ESC 250 votes. Instead, I decided to pick out the songs that have been most important to me this year. That means a lot of 2021 in the mix, naturally, a couple of new discoveries, and some old favourites that keep finding further ways to capture my heart. This is the stuff that’s been sustaining me.
Alright, let’s go… Here are my votes for this year’s ESC 250!
1 Point: Tout l’univers – Gjon’s Tears (Switzerland 2021)
Gjon is just a perfect, wholesome treasure, isn’t he? His voice is heavenly, simultaneously haunting and uplifting, which works gorgeously for Tout l’univers. Something about it makes me nostalgic for early ‘00s French radio music. I almost chose Répondez-moi, but the drama of Tout l’univers won out. I love singing this in the shower.
2 Points: Loco Loco – Hurricane (Serbia 2021)
By far my favourite pop banger of this year’s contest. Hurricane put in such an infectiously joyful performance, and Sanja’s vocals are on point. Singing “I am cute and nice” in the context of an intended one-night stand is simply delightful to me. And the fact that these were all originally supposed to be placeholder lyrics make it even better somehow. These girls are icons.
3 Points: Soldi – Mahmood (Italy 2019)
Ah, listen, I boycotted Eurovision in 2019 (it was Netta’s yellowface performance that did it). This year, I finally looked up the artists, and wow am I glad I did. Soldi has so much of what I love: angst, poetry, rap, North African pop. Mahmood delivers the best danceable tune about absent fathers since Stromae’s Papaoutai.
4 Points: Lovewave – Iveta Mukuchyan (Armenia 2016)
If you caught the recent Armenia episode of THAT Eurovision Podcast, you’ve already heard me wax lyrical about Iveta’s performance. Iveta gives me power. The duduk gives me power. Moar duduk!
5 Points: Rise Like A Phoenix – Conchita Wurst (Austria 2014)
My beloved Conchita, the performance I show people who are new to Eurovision, the gold standard by which I would measure all future acts. Rise Like a Phoenix is timeless, but held an extra special place in a year that saw me come out as trans to my family.
6 Points: Birth Of A New Age – Jeangu Macrooy (The Netherlands 2021)
Are we ready to talk about how this was robbed? Starting life as a poem about ancestral resilience, Jeangu’s song was both a lament and an antidote, performed exquisitely. Birth Of A New Age was the tune stuck in my head on Eurovision night. The refrain in Sranan Tongo an inspired choice: “You can’t break me / I’m half a cent.” Every single thing about this was perfect.
7 Points: Voilà – Barbara Pravi (France 2021)
We’re getting into some all-time best-of business here now. France has never sent anything this good before. Barbara channelled Edith Piaf and Jacques Brel whilst remaining utterly authentically herself. The staging is brilliant and shows how much can be done with very little – simple, yet striking costume and lighting choices and ingenious camera work. And a perfect song, superbly performed. I’m French.
8 Points: SHUM – Go_A (Ukraine 2021)
A cyber goth in a neon green shrug singing a folk song to call forth Spring, surrounded by snowy trees and lads playing and dancing to a quickening electro beat? This is the meaning of Eurovision! Go_A have since become one of my most-played artists.
10 Points: Zitti e buoni – Måneskin (Italy 2021)
That opening guitar strike and the pounding of the kick drum thrill me every time. What a heady performance to watch live, all of us falling for them in real time. Måneskin’s energy, grit and poetry are so well-represented in Zitti e buoni. They deserve to take the ESC 250 top spot this year!
And Isabelle’s 12 points go to… Hatrið mun sigra – Hatari (Iceland 2019)
One hundred and three hours since September. That’s how much I’ve been listening to Hatari (thank u, Spotify Wrapped). To think that four months ago, I’d never heard of them, and now they’re my favourite award-winning anti-capitalist BDSM techno-dystopian performance art collective.
Let’s discuss Hatrið mun sigra. Matthías’s scream has an instant relaxing effect on my body, Klemens’s plaintive vocals contrast beautifully against the aggression of the driving beat, and the choreo is visually arresting. The lyrics are doom-laden until the call to “Rise from the ashes / United as one.” All of this gender is occurring on the stage and in the music. “Hatred will prevail / Europe will crumble” might be the most iconic Eurovision lyric ever. There’s so much packed in. And it’s in Icelandic. More Icelandic at Eurovision, I beg.
Now that Isabelle’s revealed their votes for ESC 250, what do you think of them? Who has got your 12 points this year? As always, please let us know what you think by commenting below. Be sure to follow ‘THAT Eurovision Site’ on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
News Source: That Eurovision Site
Photo Credit: Eurovision.tv