Crank up your wind machines, y’all! Tonight sixteen acts will contest the first semi final of Eurovision 2015, but only ten will advance to the final. As the contestants slip into their tightest pants and warm up their wind machines it’s time to get in the mood for fabulous. To help you through tonight’s show we’ve pulled together a country-by-country guide to all the action. Consider it our pre-recorded commentary. For each song, we provide excerpts from our Wiwi Jury reviews and how the act fared in our fan poll. Who do you think will make it? let us know in the comments below.

Eurovision 2015: Semi Final 1 Preview

Moldova: Eduard Romanyuta “I Want Your Love”

Memorable lyrics: “The picture that you’re paintin’ got me all anticipating, GO!”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “Call me mad, but I don’t quite hate this one. In fact, I almost enjoy it. Okay, so it’s not exactly a ‘relevant’ song for 2015, but that alone doesn’t ruin the song. Eduard’s stage presence is right up there too and I think that he’ll actually be a really good opener for the contest.” (Chris)

Negative: “Moldova is one of my favourite countries in the ESC, but this year’s outsourced effort has lost that Moldovan spark that usually makes them so enjoyable.” (Robyn)

Fan poll ranking: 16  Wiwi Jury ranking: 15  Bookies qualification rank: 15

Overall ranking: 16

Armenia: Genealogy “Face the Shadow”

Memorable lyrics: “Cross the ocean of blues, happy you’ll be, once you’ve risen you are meant to be free”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “It’s dramatic and powerful, and it brings together voices so distinct it shouldn’t work — but does. It’s in a genre of its own at Eurovision this year. I’ll face the shadow so long as Armenia is singing!” (William)

Negative: “In practice, the supergroup doesn’t always work. The different vocal styles sometimes clash and it starts sounding like a hastily produced charity single” (Deban)

Fan poll ranking: 6  Wiwi Jury ranking: 5  Bookies qualification rank: 6

Overall ranking: 6

Belgium: Loïc Nottet “Rhythm Inside”

Memorable lyrics: “Be you enemy or lover, we are put here to discover, the heart that beats within each other”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “Loic is tres cool, his vocals are eerie and spot-on at the same time, and he perfectly blends artistry and pop catchiness. And I melt a little bit every time I hear him say, “I’m gonna get that rhythm back.”” (Francheska)

Negative: “The arty video and visual direction is refreshing. However, underneath it all, I find the composition rather slap dash, and devoid of soul.” (Deban)

Fan poll ranking: 2  Wiwi Jury ranking: 2  Bookies qualification rank: 7

Overall ranking: 3

Netherlands: Trijntje Oosterhuis “Walk Along”

Memorable lyrics: “I open up my heart to you, and cry for your attention, still you haven’t seen it yet”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “The first time I heard this song I got an immediate boost of happy. It is so cheerful, joyful, catchy, and fun. For an hour I was running around my house singing ‘Why-ay-ay-ay’ and I couldn’t stop.” (Mikhail)

Negative: ” I’m sorry Trijntje, but this has to be the most annoying song for me this year. I cannot stand the chorus at all — it’s as if something gets stuck in your throat and you make the same sound over and over again.” (William C)

Fan poll ranking: 9  Wiwi Jury ranking: 7  Bookies qualification rank: 16

Overall ranking: 9

Finland: Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät “Aina mun pitää”

Memorable lyrics: “I always have to clean up, I always have to wash up, I always have to see the doc, I always have to go to work

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “At last – punk comes to Eurovision! Some crusty old punks singing snarling a 90-second song about the annoyances in their lives as adults with learning disabilities – this is exactly what Eurovision needs.” (Robyn)

Negative: “I respect PKN and the struggles and prejudice which they’ve overcome in order to make it to Eurovision. But that doesn’t mean I should be obliged to like their song. As far as I’m concerned it’s just noise. On the plus-side, it’s mercifully short.” (Padraig)

Fan poll ranking: 15  Wiwi Jury ranking: 16  Bookies qualification rank: 12

Overall ranking: 15

Greece: Maria-Elena Kyriakou “One Last Breath”

Memorable lyrics: “I’m begging you take me wherever you have gone, come back and save me”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “Hellenic history lesson: Ancient Greece gave birth to the tragedy! Maria Elena Kyriakou has found the song to express her voice and the melodrama of her message is difficult to resist. It is refreshing to see Greece not hiding behind a gimmick this year.” (Angus)

Negative: “Greece, where are you? Where is the overrated dance-pop diva that you bring almost every year? Or at least some mustachioed men in kilts?…This is a new low for Greece — it’s as if Portugal sent an entry completely in English. Dreadfully slow and boring, with a lackluster buildup, I’m more than seriously worried about Greece’s chances for qualifying this year.” (Sopon)

Fan poll ranking: 7  Wiwi Jury ranking: 12  Bookies qualification rank: 4

Overall ranking: 8

Estonia: Elina Born & Stig Rasta “Goodbye to Yesterday”

Memorable lyrics: “Why didn’t you wake me up, I’m pretty sure I would have told you to stop”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “Unlike most other Eurovision duets, this one has a real story and I’m sure some people can relate to it. The last time Estonia won the contest, they brought one of the worst winners of this decade. This time they could produce one of the best.” (Sami)

Negative: “Every live performance I’ve seen presents Stig and Elina as two entertainers at work, with no sense that they are the troubled lovers of the lyrics. They’re not ex-lovers in real life, but on stage they need to act like it.” (Robyn)

Fan poll ranking: 4  Wiwi Jury ranking: 1  Bookies qualification rank: 2

Overall ranking: 1

FYR Macedonia: Daniel Kajmakoski “Autumn Leaves”

Memorable lyrics: “Every moment will hurt, from the last to the first”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “The song is not too memorable and the ending is a bit weird, but I still like the vibe and Daniel’s voice is dreamy. The lyrics are also great and if they can transfer the concept of the video clip to the performance, they might have a chance to qualify.” (Sami)

Negative: “Daniel has a strong voice and conveys what emotion the song has well. There lies the biggest issue though: the whole thing doesn’t move me enough. It feels a bit empty.” (Chris)

Fan poll ranking: 12  Wiwi Jury ranking: 9  Bookies qualification rank: 13

Overall ranking: 11

Serbia: Bojana Stamenov “Beauty Never Lies”

Memorable lyrics: “Beauty never lies, never hides, never gives a damn! Beauty never lies, no, it cries ‘Here I am!'”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “What an amazing song from Serbia! I think the Serbian language for this song was better, but I generally don’t care about the text. Regardless, it slays in English too. There is so much power in this song, and I think Bojana will deliver a great live performance in Vienna. I just love it.” (Sinan)

Negative: “To begin with, ditching Serbian for English was a bad decision. It is not always necessary to make Europe understand the lyrics, especially if your lyrics aren’t absolutely amazing or don’t make sense.” (Bogdan)

Fan poll ranking: 10  Wiwi Jury ranking: 11  Bookies qualification rank: 14

Overall ranking: 12

Hungary: Boggie “Wars for Nothing”

Memorable lyrics: “Do you know our earth is a mess? All the wars for nothing, it never ends”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “I am a sucker for sentimental songs and Boggie nailed it. Her A Dal performance was amazing, with a woman watching her world struggle with itself. The more she sings, the more people start singing together with her.” (Mike)

Negative: “What a buzzkill. I appreciate the sentiment of the song, but it’s delivered in such a serious, heavy-handed and – worst of all – boring way. And it doesn’t even come close to showcasing Boggie’s talents.” (Robyn)

Fan poll ranking: 14  Wiwi Jury ranking: 13  Bookies qualification rank: 10

Overall ranking: 13

Belarus: Uzari & Maimuna “Time”

Memorable lyrics: “Time is like thunder a-aa, beating like thunder in our heads”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “I actually adored this song right from the start. The revamp brought so much more to the table, and showed off Maimuna’s violin skills more than the original. This is the perfect mix of drama and pop.” (Liam)

Negative: “The strings have come into sharper focus and it sounds more symphonic and modern. Even so, I just can’t get into it and I get the sense this is more style than substance — how exactly is time like thunder? Ultimately this song is like a donut: tasty enough, but with a massive hole in the middle.” (William)

Fan poll ranking: 11  Wiwi Jury ranking: 8  Bookies qualification rank: 9

Overall ranking: 10 

Russia: Polina Gagarina “A Million Voices”

Memorable lyrics: “Praying for peace and healing, I hope we can start again”

What the Wiwi Jury said: 

“Positive: “The song is really good, Polina has an amazing voice and the video clip looks fantastic, so there’s no reason to hate this just because of the country she’s born in. She deserves a really high placing.” (Denise)

Negative: “It’s the typical made-for-Eurovision crap that will now get votes from Belarus, Azerbaijan and the like, and I am sick of it.” (Bogdan)

Fan poll ranking: 3  Wiwi Jury ranking: 6  Bookies qualification rank: 1

Overall ranking: 2

Denmark: Anti Social Media “The Way You Are”

Memorable lyrics: “All my fears disappear when I’m in your atmosphere”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “I’ll be honest: I should hate this. I really should. It’s sappy, old-fashioned, simply unoriginal, and the vocals are about as choppy as an internet connection in 1993. Yet there is something to be said for this 1950s-styled band: their song is insanely catchy and chirpy. Somehow, making me feel positively giddy has saved this song from a certain death.” (Francesca)

Negative: “Completely dated, and not in the “throwback fun” kind of way, in the “trying too hard and epically failing” kind of way. The attitude all of them had/have is so arrogant and pompous, I’m rooting against them already.” (Zach)

Fan poll ranking: 13  Wiwi Jury ranking: 14  Bookies qualification rank: 11

Overall ranking: 14

Albania: Elhaida Dani “I’m Alive””

Memorable lyrics: “I know you’ll come, with the speed of light, you’re my everything, all that I need.”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “Elhaida’s vocal is ON POINT and, paired with a catchy mid-tempo tune, this song was born for the top of the scoreboard. I’d love for this to match or beat Rona from 2012 – the song is that great! Elhaida is all that I need, she’s my everything.” (Josh)

Negative: “I’m Alive” fails to touch me exactly because it’s very radio friendly. I hear this kind of music on the Romanian radios all the time and I don’t feel any emotion when I hear it. I am impressed with Elhaida’s voice, but that’s about it.” (Bogdan)

Fan poll ranking: 1  Wiwi Jury ranking: 3  Bookies qualification rank: 8

Overall ranking: 4

Romania: Voltaj “De la capat”

Memorable lyrics: “Life is not a rehearsal, don’t look back, you may lose what you dream”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “Stirring, powerful and vocally on-point, this is a performance with a message and I’m loving it. I preferred the 100% Romanian version, but the fact that they’ve slotted in some English doesn’t really matter. This song makes you feel something instantly and keeps my attention the entire time.” (William)

Negative: “Can we please send Voltaj back to 2003? This style of soft-rock was fine then, but times have moved on. The sound, the look – everything is past its sell-by. The only place this song is going to is Snoozeville. So what if it’s got a “message”? There are far worthier entries this year, the bulk of which don’t send to me to sleep.” (Padraig)

Fan poll ranking: 8  Wiwi Jury ranking: 10  Bookies qualification rank: 3

Overall ranking: 7

Georgia: Nina Sublatti “Warrior”

Memorable lyrics: “Fighter, oximated, world’s gonna get up and see”

What the Wiwi Jury said:

Positive: “If I ran into this Gothic diva in a dark alley, I’d give her all my money as long as she promised to sing to me. She’s got soulful vocals that work well with this song about female empowerment. Part Janis Joplin and part Elvira, she had me hooked within seconds. At the national final I hated the bridge — she sounded like a cat giving birth. But her thoughtful revamp has turned that kitty into a tiger who roars with the best of them.” (William)

Negative: “If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all. I really don’t understand why people like this – it’s an ok song maybe but for me it’s nothing special. She may exude personal strength, but I don’t feel the strength in her voice, song or message. It’s dark but it’s too much.” (Patrick)

Fan poll ranking: 5  Wiwi Jury ranking: 4  Bookies qualification rank: 5

Overall ranking: 5

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8 years ago


8 years ago

After seeing all the performances, I can say 2 things:
1. The worst show in a very very long time! The minuscule stage, the poor camera work, the flags that kept appearing and covering the image of the stage on the TV screen… Very amateurish…

2. Georgia by far the best

8 years ago

From this semifinal I’m only rooting for Romania, Greece and Georgia. The rest of them – I don’t really care…

8 years ago

TBH the Greek song is not great, but Maria Elena is amazing and has just about the best vocals of anybody, so I think she’ll have little difficulty qualifying.

8 years ago

romania win

8 years ago

Greece qualifies each years because sends good or very good songs that worth the qualification to the final and hit top 10 almost every year.It is so stupid and hillarious to say that greece will qualify because it’s greece.Even sweden the queen of eurovision failed in 2010 and proved that it didn’t matter the name of the country but the song.However if we ever sent a lady with a bird we could win for sure no matter the song.

8 years ago

I’m honestly going to predict Greece is in trouble tonight, though I do have Moldova qualifying (IMO) so I’m probably not the best at this sort of thing.

8 years ago

your life is a toilet break, think about the children they left alone

8 years ago

This is my prediction of 1st semi-final:
1. Russia
2. Denmark
3. Estonia
4. Romania
5. Greece
6. Georgia
7. Albania
8. Belgium
9. Netherlands
10. Belarus
11. Moldova
12. Armenia
13. Finland
14. Serbia
15. Hungary
16. Macedonia

8 years ago

No one should ever doubts the greek chances of qualifying… They would make it even with a cat screaming on stage

8 years ago

Looking intriguing xd

8 years ago

To be honest, I really only like these 4 songs: Estonia, Russia, Hungary, Georgia. I kinda sometimes like Belgium. Either way, I am convinced that these 5 will qualify. Armenia will also qualify (even though I really dislike the song and can’t stand the theatricality). I don’t particularly like Albania (that is, the live-version) and Greece, but I expect them to qualify. In my opinion, Alhaida’s live version sounds like a complete and utter mess, and I personally can’t stand the Greek song (it’s like a cheap hand me down b-side of Celine Dion and she even has the same… Read more »

8 years ago

Ancient Greece giving birth to the tragedy definitely explains the decision in their national selection.