Amongst the more than 1,500 entries that have now been performed at Eurovision, only a handful of artists can claim that they’ve won it all.
But while their Eurovision songs may fill up our playlists, it’s their new releases since winning the contest that keep our interest in them going strong.
So for our next new music round-up we’re taking a look at the songs and music videos these stars have released in recent months. Read on for new tunes from the likes of Céline Dion, Lordi, Dima Bilan, Helena Paparizou, Jamala, Måns Zelmerlöw, Salvador Sobral and Emmelie de Forrest!
Céline Dion – “Ashes”
One of Eurovision’s most successful winners of all time, Céline Dion has conquered the world and you could forgive her for taking a step back and taking it easy nowadays. But in the midst of her multi-million dollar concert residency in Las Vegas, Céline has still found the time to record “Ashes”, a song from the soundtrack of box-office smash Deadpool 2.
Céline is of course no stranger to recording songs for movie soundtracks, but while “My Heart Will Go On” was all about pure emotion, the music video for “Ashes” lets the star show off a bit of her comedic side as well. Singing in a large auditorium, interspersed with clips from the film, Céline is subsequently joined by a heel-wearing Deadpool who performs a contemporary dance routine while she sings at full throttle.
After giving her all, the “Ne partez pas sans moi” singer is critiqued by Deadpool himself who notes: “That was the most beautiful performance I’ve ever seen in my life”. However, he quickly adds: “We need to do it again…it’s too good…we need to get you down to a five, five and a half tops”. Not having any of it, Céline hits back saying: “This thing only goes to eleven, so beat it Spider-Man”. Our queen has no plan to reign in her star power any time soon, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Céline’s song is of course not the only Eurovision connection Deadpool 2 has. While promoting the film, Hollywood star Ryan Reynolds took to Twitter to put forward Canada’s case for joining “that European singsong competition thing”, particularly since Australia is now involved and according to Ryan they’re “barely on the planet”.
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) May 8, 2018
That didn’t sit too well with some Australians, and Jessica Mauboy took time out of her Eurovision 2018 schedule to reply to Ryan, pointing out that Australia may not be as far away from Europe as he thinks, and added: “will your sleeping moose really want to take on an Australian saltwater crocodile”. If Ryan has his way, maybe Canada and Australia will be able to settle this score on the Eurovision stage at some point.
— Jessica Mauboy (@jessicamauboy) May 11, 2018
Lordi – “Your Tongue’s Got The Cat” and “Naked In My Cellar”
Saara Aalto’s monsters may not have given her the Eurovision crown, but Finland’s original monsters are still rocking hard 12 years after taking home the victory. Lordi’s first release this year was “Your Tongue’s Got The Cat”, the first single off their May 2018 album Sexorcism (which features other interestingly titled tracks such as “Romeo Ate Juliet” and “Hot & Satanned”). This track sees Mr Lordi talking to a lover who’s been taken over by the darkness: “I hope you’re still in there somewhere / I tell myself that I still care / But those glowing eyes keep me aware / Hell stole my baby”. Full of guitar, base and drums, the song has all the components that endeared them to Europe back in 2006, and their fans will no doubt be glad to see the group rocking out once again.
The group’s second single from the album is “Naked In My Cellar”. Here the “Hard Rock Hallelujah” hitmakers sing to a girl who they find particularly attractive and want to keep away from the outside world: “You don’t need the world outside / It’s troubled, and it’s boring / You’re lucky you have met my kind / I’m caring and adoring”. The accompanying music video sees the band show off some brand new costumes, which you may have seen Mr Lordi wearing in Lisbon earlier this year. Viewer discretion is perhaps advised for the video though, as Lordi’s idea of being “caring and adoring” may not align with everyone else’s.
Dima Bilan – “Девочка, не плачь” and “Пьяная Любовь” (with Polina)
He recently won ‘Best Song’ at the 2018 Muz-TV Awards for “Держи” (“Hold”), the first single off his 2017 album Эгоист (Egoist). Now Dima Bilan has released the second cut from the album, “Девочка, не плачь” (“Girl, Do not Cry”). Just as for the first single, Dima has roped in Miss World 2008 Ksenia Sukhinova to be a part of the music video, which was shot in Cyprus. We see the two dancing, both out under the hot Cypriot sun, as well as during the night in a club. As the pair are heading home after their night on the town Dima gets into a fight with a group of locals. Coming out on top, they eventually reach the car, but just as the clip ends Ksenia headbutts the “Believe” singer out of nowhere. The video is said to represent the journey of finding your soul-mate, and even though you may find someone you idealise and want to protect from harm, in the end they may not appreciate the sentiment themselves.
However, the Eurovision 2008 victor’s latest release sees him teaming up with American-based, Russian-born, Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter Polina (who you may know from providing vocals on Felix Jaehn’s “Book of Love” and Eminem’s “Legacy”). “Пьяная Любовь” (“Drunken Love”) sees the two artists noting the desire they have for each other that they can’t escape: “This is a drunken love, we can not get out from it / You bring down the pulse, arrows straight to the heart”.
Musically the song is a nice laid-back electropop track, similar to much of Dima’s latest album. However, although we noted that to non-Russian speakers many of the tracks on this album “lack personality and fall rather flat — eventually all blending into one”, the added layer of Polina’s vocals in “Пьяная Любовь” help lift the song above these to one that even non-native Russian speakers can get on board with.
Helena Paparizou – “Totally Erased” (“Έτσι Κι Έτσι”)
Following the success of 2017’s “Haide” and “Αν Με Δεις Να Κλαίω”, both of which topped the charts in Greece and Cyprus, and also made an impact in Sweden and Bulgaria, Helena Paparizou released “Totally Erased” in May of this year. The song sees the Eurovision 2005 champion moving on from someone who has fooled her into love: “Don’t want to see your face / I’m breaking, the chains / And I have burnt your page / You’re totally erased”.
“Totally Erased” is in fact an English-language version of Helena’s December 2017 release “Έτσι Κι Έτσι” (“So and So”), the latest single off her Ουράνιο Τόξο (Rainbow) album. The music video sees the “My Number One” hitmaker reminiscing of a former lover before driving up onto a nearby hill to find a place to clear her head and think things through. “Έτσι Κι Έτσι” also reached the top five of the Greek and Cypriot charts, while the album itself peaked at number one. Helena may have won Eurovision 13 years ago now, but she’s still conquering the charts like not many other previous winners can do.
Jamala – “Любити” and “Крила”
A person’s wedding day is often cited as one of the best days of their life. So it’s only natural that you’d want to preserve the memories from this day in some form. Whilst most people may fill up a photo album, Eurovision 2016 queen Jamala has taken it one step further and turned her music video for “Любити” (“Love”) into a video-highlight reel of her special day.
Originally the b-side of her September 2017 single “Сумую” (“I Miss”), “Любити” sees Jamala singing to her husband and hoping that they will have a happy life together: “In the heart of the violinist, the echo of dreams / An adventurous step into the future / Your tender laugh again brought spring”. The music video, uploaded in February, shows Jamala and her huband Bekir arriving for the ceremony, before Jamala performs the song live at the reception for her chosen man. It’s giving us all the feels, and we can tell that these two were a match made in heaven.
Jamala’s latest release though is “Крила” (“Wings”). The “1944” singer premiered the song at the final of Vidbir 2018, before performing it again at the final of The Voice of Ukraine, where she is a judge and recently mentored Ukraine’s Junior Eurovision 2015 singer Anna Trincher to third place. In the song Jamala asks a certain individual why they are determined to help her fly when she feels so low: “Why do you carry me / When there is no strength to go on / When I am embraced by despondency / You take off your wings for me”.
Musically, the song is what the Ukrainian star does best – experimental rhythms full of traditional instruments and packed with emotion. It may not entice in any new fans, but for those who appreciate Jamala’s work and back catalogue it will certainly speak to them even if they don’t understand Ukrainian.
Måns Zelmerlöw – “Happyland”
The latest cut off Måns Zelmerlöw’s seventh studio album, Chameleon, is “Happyland”. The song speaks of a society that has gone to ruins: “There’s a hole in the soul of Happyland / We stay high in our castles made of sand / There’s a church where we go to numb the pain / We messed up and I know you feel the same”.
The music video, released in early February, follows a similar theme. We see the “Heroes” hitmaker travelling through a post-apocalyptic world. He returns to his old house where he recalls the time spent with his loved one before the destruction occurred. Continuing on his journey he eventually stumbles across another masked individual. Who could this person be? It turns out to be none other than Måns’ pre-apocalypse partner, and the video receives the ‘happy ending’ treatment as the two re-kindle their love for each other.
“Happyland” sees Måns return to the charts, but not in Sweden. The song was used for a series of commercials for the 50th anniversary of the Kinder chocolate line across Europe, including Germany and Romania, to go along with the tag-line “Made of Happy”. The song began to gain traction and has subsequently topped the German iTunes charts, and managed to peak at #12, #34 and #72 on the Hungarian, Czech Republic and German official charts respectively.
Salvador Sobral – “Mano a Mano”
Released a couple of days before performing it at the Eurovision 2018 grand-final, “Mano a Mano” (“Hand in Hand”) is Salvador Sobral’s winner’s single. The song speaks of two people who are afflicted by the same pain and can only move forward in life if they do so “hand in hand”: “Twin brothers in a single torment / Children of the same affliction…All we can do is go hand in hand / If we don’t want to end up alone”.
Predominantly piano driven but with added base and drums, this new song doesn’t have the same emotional connection as “Amar Pelos Dois”. Instead it tries to take listeners on a more lively journey, however it does at times feel more like a random jamming session between the musicians rather than a solidified single. One for keeping things authentic instead of too over-produced though, that is perhaps Salvador’s aim. Nevertheless, after the roller-coaster year he has been on in terms of his health, it’s great to see him up and producing new music with his natural flair.
Emmelie de Forrest – “Any Less” and “Rabbit”
Finally in this Eurovision winners round-up we turn to 2013 champion Emmelie de Forrest, who has released a couple of videos for songs from her second album History. The latest single off the album is “Any Less”. In the song the “Only Teardrops” singer talks to her loved one saying that she will love them no matter what they may go through or do: “You could say the wrong things and / I really wouldn’t care / Trip up, but I know under there / You’re covered in gold, and / I wouldn’t love you any less”.
The lyric video shows Emmelie lounging around on the floor, snuggled in a duvet. We see her working on a laptop, reading a book and taking a selfie. The actions in the video are perhaps connected to the first few lines of the song, with Emmelie needing to take a moment for herself to get her head around the relationship: “I shut down and slam the door / I need a minute for me / It may take a little more / No need to worry”. Apart from that, there admittedly appears to be no real link between Emmelie reading a book and proclaiming her unending love for someone.
A separate music video for “Rabbit” was uploaded earlier in June and sees Emmelie exploring a house with doors to mysterious realms. Slightly Alice in Wonderland inspired, Emmelie eventually comes across her rabbit in a room at the top of a house. While it may not seem like the most expensive video in the world, it’s important to note that it was shot by a group of students from Køge undertaking an artistic project. Considering the various effects and shots used, we think they probably got a rather good mark for it.
Emmelie notes that she has also shot another video with a different group of students. Which track off her album do you think will get the music video treatment next?
So what do you make of the latest releases from these Eurovision winners? Whose music are you listening to on repeat? Let us know in the comments below!