Before the house music of the 2010’s, the pop music of the 2000’s, and the rap music of the 1990’s, rock topped the charts. Sadly, it seems to be losing its relevance in the world and in Eurovision. In recent years rockers at ESC have learned that they must adapt their sound or suffer a poor result. However, like most genres of music, rock has many different sub-genres, some of which have fared better in our annual schlagerfest. Let’s have a look-see…
Music in the style of Coldplay and Green Day often does well. Usually this has a more pop-house or a hip-hop twist. Combined with some cute guys that get everyone fangirling, they can make a real impact on the scoreboard. Finland’s Softengine, featuring the adorable Topi Latukka, recently scored the best result for their country since their victory in 2006 (more on that later). Also in this category is Turkey’s maNga, the runners-up to Germany in 2010.
Classic 70’s-style Rock
I might be a high school student, but I’m an old soul at heart. Outside of Eurovision, Rush and Aerosmith are my absolute favorite bands. Their style of rock is my absolute favorite, and I love seeing it transferred to the Eurovision stage. Unfortunately, it has zero chance of qualifying. These old-time artists often sing in their native language, and it’s probably the death sentence. Two examples of this are last year’s entry from Albania, Identitet (although the problem might have been the excessive amount of pyro), and Latvia’s entry in 2004, Dziesma par laimi. Neither qualified, coming 15th and 17th, respectively, in their semi-final.
We proclaimed 2014 the year of angry women, but chick rock is a sub-genre specifically for this type of music. From Emma singing of her hate for the inconveniences of the city, to Hanna telling a creepy stalker to back off, to Sinéad Mulvey shouting at her cheating boyfriend, these women have no feelings of mercy! Chick rock often does poorly, and is often a pre-show favorite that scores shockingly low.
These KISS wannabes haven’t gone full-on metal yet, but they are much more stylish than the classic rockers. A bizarre combination between crazy costumes and classic rock music with a bit of emo mixed in, they are commonly found on the right-hand side of the Grand Final scoreboard. Need an example? Look no further than Sweden’s entry in 2007, The Ark with The Worrying Kind, or Finland’s entry the next year, Teräsbetoni with Missä miehet ratsastaa.
While this type of rock has never even crossed the Eurovision stage, we owe it a mention. This type of music usually includes ear-ringing volumes and lots of screaming. The music itself is often very depressing as far as lyrics are concerned, and there are often lots and lots gimmicks involved. We salute Outrigger, who performed Echo in Melodifestivalen this year, and Winny Puhh’s insane performance of Meiecundimees üks Korsakov läks eile Lätti.
Rock’s Sole Victory in Modern Eurovision
This one does not need any introduction. We all know and love our favorite monsters, the members of Lordi! Headed by makeup artist Tomi Putaansuu (a.k.a. Mr. Lordi), this unique ensemble stormed their way to Finland’s long overdue victory in 2006. Here is Hard Rock Hallelujah!
Do you think that rock is undeservedly wronged in Eurovision? Could you care less about its inclusion in the final? As they would say in the European home of rock, kertokaa miedän kommenteissa!