Team Wiwi’s Top National Final Songs of ESC 2016 (30-26)

We kicked off our countdown of our top 40 national final songs yesterday, with the likes of Krista Siegfrids and Florena singing their way into our list. With the standard of competition so high across all the national finals this year, it’s perhaps no surprise that five different countries feature in these next five songs. You can read our thoughts about each song below, along with a link to the Wiwi Jury review where possible.

30. “Until Tomorrow” — Darline (United Kingdom)

The BBC staged an open call for songs for the UK’s first national final since 2010. It resulted in a number of songs of varying quality — from sh*t to hit. When the final six were revealed on BBC Radio 2, Darline seemed to be the clear and obvious winner. “Until Tomorrow” didn’t click as much live as we had all hoped, but it’s hard to deny the song’s strengths.

Wiwi Jury: “This song takes me to heaven and back. When I first heard it, I thought it was cute. On the second listen, I fell in love — it touched something deep inside me. These ladies bring youthful energy and “Until Tomorrow” is beautiful both lyrically and musically.” (Antranig)

29. “Sally” — Go Away Bird (Estonia)

A multi-national band that describes itself as “a combination of trip-rock, post-punk, dream pop, and a 90s indie cocktail with a small western touch.” Still not totally sure what that means, but we know it could only happen in Eesti Laul, and it could only be Go Away Bird. “Sally” oozed a certain sense of cool mixed with a healthy dose of attitude. Their cocktail slipped down easy.

Wiwi Jury: “In the words of the great George Takei, ‘Oh myyy!‘ Go Away Bird completely slays! I love this raspy, throwback sound of theirs and they’re all just so darn cute as well! ‘Sally’ is one of the strongest entries in Eesti Laul this year, and is certainly a force to be reckoned with. They’re actually just too cool to function!” (Kristin)

28. “Ain’t No Good” — Mimi Werner (Sweden)

It seems that there’s almost a rule that the first heat of Melodifestivalen must have some kind of upset. Last year, Molly Pettersson-Hammar felt the burn and this year it was Mimi Werner’s turn. “Ain’t No Good” was slick and Mimi oozed cowgirl chic. Unfortunately, up against the likes of Ace, Robin and…Albin & Mattias, she was sent home in fifth place in her Melfest debut. Please come back next year, Mimi!

27. “Kingdom” — Christabelle (Malta)

Unsurprisingly, Christabelle was one of the big favourites going in to this year’s MESC final. After we fell in love with “Rush” last year, “Kingdom” was yet another step up for C-belle. Showing off more confident vocals and a real banger of a tune, this could have been a real contender to win for Malta…were it not for a certain Ira Losco also being in the field. Will next year finally be Christabelle’s time?

Wiwi Jury: YAASS Christabelle! “Kingdom” is anthemic, addictive and fierce. She brings that brilliant pop vocal that we all grew to love in “Rush” to a far more powerful and mesmerising song. (Josh)

26. “Liroje Zemren” — Besa Krasniqi (Albania)

We wanted Besa to win. You wanted Besa to win. Given the reaction to “Fairytale Love”, maybe Albania should have wanted Besa to win too. In the end, though, Besa didn’t even manage to place in the top ten of the show. With a very un-FiK sounding song, that might not have been surprising, but it does make you wonder if Albania will ever deviate from their usual sound – especially when the other option is this good.

Wiwi Jury: This is my number one in this year’s Festivali i Këngës. The song reminds me a lot of Emmelie de Forest — could it be the winning vibes? “Liroje zemrën” is radio-friendly and I see this hitting the charts all over Europe. Besa lights up my soul. (Ramadan)

Did any of your favourites go out today and what did you think of these five songs? Let us know in the comments section below. Then make sure to check back tomorrow where we have songs from the likes of Sweden, Estonia and Austria making our list.

Check out all of our top national final songs posts here