The first semi-final of Eurovision 2014 is just a few hours away. Sadly six acts will go home and among them will be some very deserving singers. Here are five acts that fell at the first hurdle, but shouldn’t have.

MONTENEGRO, 2013: WHO SEE FT. NINA ZIZIC – IGRANKA

I know dubstep isn’t really everyone’s cup of tea. However, I think this entry really deserved to go through. One of the wonderful things about Eurovision is how it, sometimes belatedly reflects even minor changes in musical subculture. Dubstep is the only dance sub-genre worth giving a damn about right now. To date, it has only been done justice by Who See.

The song was immensely catchy, and on stage it was interesting to watch. Certainly, it deserved to go through ahead on entries that were so boring they made me want to cry (ahem, Andrius Pojavis and Dina Garipova). Admittedly, they were better on the record than live on stage, but then again, the influence of the darker elements of the European bass scene were never going to resonate with a Eurovision audience.

FINLAND, 2012: PERNILLA KARLSSON – NAR JAG BLUNDAR

Several genres apart from Igranka, Nar Jag Blundar was neo-classical pop entry that narrowly missed out on qualification, finishing in 12th place. It was a refreshing cello-driven sorbet in a feast of pop music, and I think it deserved better critical acclaim than that which it received. More than that, it was sung beautifully in Swedish by a young lady named Pernilla Karlsson.

It was Finland’s best entry since Lordi – but it was let down by voters. In my view, it exceeds the quality of Krista Siegfrieds entry in 2013 by quite some way. The real tragedy in all this is that it was beaten by songs I wouldn’t give a second listen to if I were paid. Compact Disco qualified ahead. Why?

BELGIUM, 2011: WITLOOF BAY – WITH LOVE

An acapella entry, With Love missed out even more narrowly on qualification, finishing in 11th place. If it had been my decision, it would have won the semi-final outright. There are two words which I’d use to describe this song: raw talent. I had trusted that it would get through on the strength of the beat-box section, which I had mistakenly thought might capture the vote of “da youth”. Unfortunately, “da youth” were too busy sending more terrible acts through – worst of all, the woman with the world’s most annoying backing dancers – Getter Jaani – and the ironically named So Lucky by Moldovan ska-gnome outfit Zdob ?i Zdub.

LITHUANIA, 2010: INCULTO – EASTERN EUROPEAN FUNK

There is a general consensus that politics should really have no place in Eurovision. However, in 2010 a small band of sparkly-trousered men named InCulto took the stage in Oslo. It was a tongue in cheek jibe about the state of the Eastern-European in Western civilisation: “survived the Reds and two World Wars” particularly stuck out. However, the song was above all else ferociously catchy, with a trumpet line to die for. The lyrics were catchy, had a message and far exceeded the the talents of acts in the final.

Perhaps it was the seeding of performance number one that did for InCulto in the end, but it really should have qualified over the entries of Niamh “Very, very far away from past glories” Kavanagh, and Chanée and N’evergreen, whose song sounded rather uncomfortably similar to The Police’s “Every Breath You Take”.

THE NETHERLANDS, 2008: THE TOPPERS – SHINE

…just kidding. I’d like one of their suits though.

You can read all of our Eurovison lists by clicking here.

Chris Wood contributed this report from the UK. Follow him on Twitter at @crwexeYou can also keep up-to-date on the latest Eurovision news and gossip by following the team on Twitter @wiwibloggs and by liking our Facebook page.

Photo: Sander Hesterman (EBU)

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ESCaddict
Guest

I could add my own list but it would be very long.
Of the 5 acts listed in the blog, I agree with Who See (who put in an awesome performance with an awesome song) & Pernilla with her amazing song.
The Toppers can go through too!

3urovisionSam
Guest

Belgium 2006, surely?

Chris Wood
Guest

Thanks for all your comments, guys.

Thiefo
Guest

What about San Marino or Israel last year? I agree with all these except Finland 2012, it was terribly boring for me, but that’s just my personal taste. If I had to choose an act that didn’t qualify in 2012 I would’ve gone with The Netherlands, Portugal or Slovenia.

Ohi
Guest

All of them were really bad except Igranka…

Renske
Guest

Please no Toppers!!! Since Gordon left he the Toppers he’s on every TV show: The X Factor, Hotter Than My Daughter, Holland’s Got Talent, Alles Mag Op Vrijdag…. it’s the worst act we’ve ever send. They really thought they could win. :O

Deven O'Kearney
Guest

How Ireland did not get through in 2009 is an absolute travesty. But then again, these shock non qualifiers do happen.

Emmanuel UK-RO
Guest

lithuania should have been in the top 3 of that semi final.
i loved that song so much, i died a little inside when i realised on the night of the grand final that they didn’t qualify.

Paul
Guest

Estonia 2010 (Malcolm Lincoln-Siren) was maybe one of the most unique songs that graced Eurovision (a dark synth-pop with a key change) and yet it failed to qualify

Darren
Guest

My bad..sorry.

Ireland was really really close to qualifying in 2009 then if I remember correctly

SJ
Guest

Darren, Serbia was on 10 place that year not Ireland

SJ
Guest

and forgot Montenegro 2013

SJ
Guest

For me countries to deserve to go to final in past are:
Israel 2013, San Marino 2013, The Netherlands 2012, Switzerland 2012, Bulgaria 2012, Slovenia 2012, Bulgaria 2011,San Marino 2011, Slovakia 2010,Malta 2010,Bulgaria 2010, Croatia 2010, Montenegro 2009, Belarus 2009, Ireland 2009, Slovenia 2009, Switzerland 2008,Andorra 2008, Bulgaria 2008, Macedonia 2008, Belgium 2008, The Netherlands 2007, Cyprus 2007, Iceland 2007, Malta 2007……

Darren
Guest

Ireland in 2009 had an amazing song, “Et Cetera” and received a standing ovation at the Olimpsky Stadium. They actually came in 10th place but lost because a jury selected the 10th song in the semi final….it lost out to Croatia, which placed lower on the scoreboard than Ireland.

vikutoru
Guest

I agree with you on Finland 2012, När Jag Blundar is the third most played song in my 2012 playlist, only behind Euphoria and Zaleilah.

Timselvision
Guest

The Toppers were in 2009 :p

Agree about Igranka, but the others… I like them, don’t get me wrong. But there were better songs. I miss Horehronie and This is my Life (Slovakia & Sweden 2010).

Robyn
Guest

The exclusion of Igranka still hurts. The worst thing is it scored really well with televotes. It was the juries that nudged it down into 12th place. But there will always be a place for Igranka in my heart.

nauportus90
Guest

The biggest travesty is that Evridiki in 2007 didn’t reach the finals. And Latvia in 2011 also had an amazing song.

beccaboo1212
Guest

San Marino ’12 & ’13
Austria ’13
Slovenia ’12 & ’13
Latvia ’13
Belgium ’12
Slovakia ’12
Belarus ’11

Those were my VERY favorites. And none of them went to the final :'(

Anna
Guest

What? No one of them I think is a shame not go to final!

boozeandeurovision
Guest

San Marino ’13
Cyprus ’07
Serbia ’13
Macedonia ’08
Croatia ’10
Israel ’11
Iceland ’07

Daniel
Guest

Israel and Montenegro 13, Macedonia 08

Duff
Guest

I still shed a tear for Igranka not going through.

Elmow
Guest

All of them are horrible, except the Toppers ofcourse

marklebron
Guest

I only agree witg Montenegro ’13
Israel 13, Macedonia 08, Cyprus 07, Belgium 06, and Sweden 10 wouldve been great in the finals.