News outlets in Austria are suggesting that the nation’s state broadcaster ORF will pick its Eurovision 2014 contestant internally next year, thereby doing away with the “Österreich rockt den Song Contest” pre-selection.
We welcome the move. After sitting out of Eurovision in 2008, 2009 and 2010, Austria returned to Eurovision in 2011. Owing to Nadine Beiler‘s amazing vocals, they managed to reach the final. But Vienna has watched its past two contestants flop out during the semi-finals. Austria’s Trackshittaz thought gimmicks—see the raunchy poll dancers above—would get them through. They seem to have forgotten that rap rarely gets through even if it deserves to (see Montenegro 2013). And this year Natalia Kelly hoped stunning vocals would make up for a lackluster song. They didn’t, nor did performing first in her semi. But don’t blame the artists. The Austrian public sent them through. It’s possible Austrians simply have bad taste—or at least taste that is out of kilter with the rest of Europe.
Looking ahead to next year, I’m throwing my weight behind Falco Luneau and Parov Stelar.
Falco competed in Austria’s NF in 2013 and came third. Given the right song, his unique voice could defo propel Austria into the final. Plus he lives in Holland, so could get some Benelux loving at ESC.
Parov Stelar is already an internationally-acclaimed musician and DJ, working across genres like electroswing and downtempo. His music would bring a ‘Greece 2013’ party-vibe to Eurovision.
Will Austria’s fortunes turn around if they pick internally next year?
Photo: Eurovision.tv (EBU)