Back in January, Finnish broadcaster YLE announced that the iconic DJ and producer Darude would represent Finland at Eurovision 2019. Tonight the Finnish public and an international jury decided that Darude and vocalist Sebastian Rejman would perform “Look Away” in Tel Aviv.

Over the past month, the artists released their three collaborations, each potential entries for Finland at Eurovision 2019. The songs were performed live for the first time tonight.

“Release Me” is a strong, danceable EDM banger, “Superman” has a heartfelt message, while “Look Away” offered commentary on the troubled world we live in. And in the end, it was “Look Away ” that won.

The song was performed with Darude at a keyboard inside a giant three-side cube. The cube rotated and had LED panels on its exterior that showed visuals that alluded to the song lyrics, particularly with regard to climate change. An interpretive dancer performed on top of the cube, while Sebastian Rejman moved around the stage as he sang.

The results

The winning song was decided by a 50/50 televote and international jury vote. The jury was made up of Norway’s 2017 Eurovision hitmaker JOWST, Spanish Head of Delegation Ana Maria Bordas Julve, Czech Republic Head of Delegation Jan Bors, Swedish Eurovision songwriter Gabriel Alares, Irish Head of Delegation Michael Kealy, Danish Eurovision winner Emmelie de Forest, Eurovision 2019 head of events Tali Eshkoli, and representing the UK, wiwibloggs’ own editor-in-chief William Lee Adams.

It was a clean sweep for “Look Away”, with all the judges giving it their 12 points:

When the televote results came in, the public agreed. “Release Me” earned 19 points, “Superman” was on  73 points, while “Look Away” had a top score of 148 points.

“Look Away” was also a favourite with wiwibloggs readers. In a recent Wiwi Poll, 46.83% of readers selected “Look Away” as their favourite. The Wiwi Jury agreed, giving “Look Away” the highest score in the Wiwi Jury.

The show

Show co-host Krista Siegfrids opened the evening singing about cats while standing in front of a massive golden cat, taking inspiration from Netta’s staging in Lisbon. Then a children’s flute choir came on and played “Toy” as well as Darude’s 1999 international hit “Sandstorm”. Krista also performed a Finnish version of “Toy”. And that’s how you get a show started!

Emmelie de Forest also provided the interval act. She performed her Eurovision winning song “Only Teardrops”, with a slightly different arrangement to her 2013 winning act.

Darude’s two-decade career

Darude is best known for his 1999 instrumental trance single “Sandstorm”. The track was an international hit and charted around the world, including the Billboard Hot 100 and the UK singles chart.

In recent years, “Sandstorm” has found new life as an internet meme. Thanks to its popularity in gaming videos, this led to the development of a meme where any request for a song title gets the response Darude – “Sandstorm”. It looks like that wish has partly come true.

But there’s more than just that one single in Darude’s repertoire. The accomplished international DJ and producer has released four albums and numerous singles. With a career spanning over two decades, Darude remains a respected musical artist.

Sebastian Rejman

Sebastian is the lead vocalist, guitarist and songwriter of the Finnish rock band The Giant Leap. The group were most active in the 2000s and the group released two albums. Rejmann also plays with his own band, Sebastian & The 4th Line Band.

What do you think? Is “Look Away” a good choice for Finland to take to Eurovision 2019? Can Darude take Finland to the grand final?

Read more Finland Eurovision news here

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stephen
stephen
2 years ago

just another typical eurovision song

memememe
memememe
2 years ago

Song is ok but singer is wrong. This is still million times better than some mikael saari or some other awful artists would be. I believe Darude will qualify because he is Darude. Also you dont need to make anything special to do well in eurovision. Many here complains because of music genre what Darude represent. If Finland does not qualify with Darude then its difficult to see any point to participate.

Bandido
Bandido
2 years ago
Reply to  memememe

‘This is still million times better than some mikael saari’ , WTH*LL????!!! Do you have hearing problem or just lack of musical ear! M. Saari has one of the best voices in Finland and The Song ‘We should be through’ (2013) was selected for Suomi Love-songs favourite!! Only hope you are from Finland, then I’ll forgive you, because Finns have no taste! 🙂

Michi
Michi
2 years ago

i want to like it but i can’t even get all the way through…
look away sounds a little dated, middleaged even…
all the best though!!! i hope finland qualifies for the final 🙂

Graph
Graph
2 years ago

I also like this much more than last year.

Daniel García
Daniel García
2 years ago

I volunteer as a substitute for Sebastian in Tel Aviv. His voice was either too weak or the sound was awful. The song itself has a lot of power, but it must be sung by a better singer.

AngieP
AngieP
2 years ago

Obviously the best choice! I hope Finland qualifies with this because you never know. I like the song generally.

Like
Like
2 years ago

Attention. Croatia without wings and not english version. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v6pkEgrX3C4 I like it. ?

Fast Food Music Lover
Fast Food Music Lover
2 years ago

The song title is “Look Away” and the video is just bunch of people looking away. I love it.

Jurgen
Jurgen
2 years ago

Fact is that Finland can´t produce anything else than boring shit. Year after year these same flavorless futiles. Go for example to listen some pop artists who are favourite in Finland like Sanni, Elli-Noora or Paula Vesala. Those music are except total futile shit, they are really awkward singers. Everybody sings with plastic voice straight to nose. Makes me really think who in Finland make music and what are level of record companies there. Seems to be that except they are totally tasteless, they also don´t have ears. No miracle that this land is always last in Eurovision. They had… Read more »

Bandido
Bandido
2 years ago
Reply to  Jurgen

Jurgen, in Finland there are not only good singers, but even good songs from Jenni Vartiainen, Chisu incl. Paula Vesala, Sanni (execpt some Elli-Noora). All have at least one good Song and hit, Jenni have several (Duran Duran, Eden just name a few). These just never goes to Eurovision. So juts cut this bull of yours just because for Eurovision have been selected practically all the bad ones!!!

Just me
Just me
2 years ago

All 3 Saara Aalto’s last year UMK songs were much better. So pity for UMK!

Kuhkatz
Kuhkatz
2 years ago

Decent, one of the better ones this year (not because it is outstanding but because of the lack of overall quality)
Stage could easily lift this up to the final as it is amazing, and I hope that its true with the Sound Problems (didnt watch the show) because in the NF performance video, Sebastian’s voice is too weak

Mel
Mel
2 years ago

Best staging for sure, but there was never really a song to choose from. Also not impressed by Sebastian’s voice or stage presence. This might make it through but it’s definitely not a certain qualifier in my books.

olvresc
olvresc
2 years ago
Reply to  Mel

I think the problem was the sound. Saara was vocally awful st last year’s UMK but perfect at Eurovision. YLE has always problems with that, so I’m confident that it’ll be better in Israel.

Mel
Mel
2 years ago
Reply to  olvresc

Fair enough. It’s unfortunate that the song itself would still be weak even with perfect vocals. But maybe the staging will manage to lift it in Tel Aviv.

Sonam
Sonam
2 years ago

Bad news for Finland this year

Pancake
Pancake
2 years ago

Yes! My favorite won (even though, I all of them are my favorite).
Good luck to Darude, Sebastian Rejman, and Finland!

avner
avner
2 years ago

Disappointing. I think this song highlights Sebastian’s limitations as a vocalist while Superman is a better fit for this duo. Once more, Finland chooses what bores me. At lease ICE, NOR and POR did the right thing.

Vogzal Odessa
Vogzal Odessa
2 years ago

What a night!!! How many NF’s were there, like at least 5??
I just heard the Finnish song – it reminds me of sunshine over the polar sea (trying to be illustrative in giving a compliment). I actually really like it, maybe the singer’s voice should be a bit more amplified because it doesn’t seem to get through in its full capacity/power. Otherwise prety cool, regardless of whether it is or not a contender. Good job, Finland!!!

Nikko
Nikko
2 years ago

What was going on with Sebastian? When it became clear that “Look away” was leading, his face looked sad. He seemed not very happy and unmotivated.

Denis
Denis
2 years ago

The staging is cool, the song meh. It’s 3 minutes of nothing really. You forget it the moment it’s over.
probably qualify though because it’s Darude but won’t do much better than Saara last year,

Dalth
Dalth
2 years ago

Thought the staging was pretty cool the song was just a bit meh I’m afraid, shame he didn’t have a stronger voice, but yeah decent enought to qualify.

tom
tom
2 years ago

Poland 2018 calling 2.0

Nicky91
Nicky91
2 years ago
Reply to  tom

apart from the fact Darude is a much better DJ than Gromee, without any awkward snake arm movements

Sebastian has a good voice, i felt like look away was the best choice

Bandido
Bandido
2 years ago
Reply to  tom

There’s nothing in common except DJ and genre! Even staging is more interesting, if not the Song!

Jack
Jack
2 years ago

Didn’t see the show but was rooting for “Superman”! How did this song win!

Gurki
Gurki
2 years ago
Reply to  Jack

Superman was horrible live, a mess

Milye
Milye
2 years ago

All of 3 songs were really weak and boring.. I’m sorry Finland but this is not your year. Goodluck anyway

xmynameis
xmynameis
2 years ago

None of the songs were good, the singer has weak vocals and Darude looks awkward and unnecessary on a stage.

Yodenman
Yodenman
2 years ago

Yes….Iceland final just finished…Hatari here we go.

BOMBO FUEGO TEMPO
BOMBO FUEGO TEMPO
2 years ago

EDM for streetwalkers under influence

Alexis Carrington Colby
Alexis Carrington Colby
2 years ago

Outdated song. Stuck bottom 3 in semi. I slept and wake after 3 min.

Rumpelstiltskin
Rumpelstiltskin
2 years ago

The best song won! Nice!

Upvote if you know what this song is really about 😉

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
2 years ago

The headline of this article….Yay! They won!

Albert
Albert
2 years ago

Honestly the 3 songs are so outdated, other fact it’s that the singer isn’t so good…

Finland it’s my 16th for the moment, I’ll wait for the other 4 entries

Stephanie
Stephanie
2 years ago

And yet another disappointment

Sabrina
Sabrina
2 years ago

It was their best option, since the song has a clear message (while “Release Me” was just a huge amount of nothing and “Superman” was cheesy) and they found a direct and clever way to stage it, even if the whole thing gets old pretty fast. I’m afraid Finland will rely too much on EDM fans, because it may be not entertaining enough to a general audience. And I must agree that Sebastian’s vocals are simply not working. I don’t know how much of it it’s a matter of sound mixing, but he doesn’t seem much charismatic either.

Purple Mask
Purple Mask
2 years ago
Reply to  Sabrina

“Superman” might have been a cheesy concept, but at least it had a singable Chorus. Musically it was the best of the three songs. However, “Look Away” has better staging and a more resonant overall message to send to ESC, and to the host country (I assume). It certainly does chime in with the boycott movement anyhow. 😀
However, I agree on being disappointed by the singer. Sorry Sebastian – When you watch and listen to yourself back, you will hopefully see what we mean and improve for ESC.

Sabrina
Sabrina
2 years ago
Reply to  Purple Mask

For a moment, I thought “Superman” would win, because it brought the “party mood” and like you said, it’s an accessible track. But I guess there was a lot going on in the stage. And it also got boring pretty fast. So “Look Away” at least has something to say, some people may connect to the entry through the message if not through the music.

Euoiio
Euoiio
2 years ago

The best song won <3
This will be one of my favs <3
Oh and Sebastian is sooo handsome. Damn what a daddy 😛

Gurki
Gurki
2 years ago

Darude is the most famous artist in ESC, and all other countries are trash. 70% qualifer.

Alex
Alex
2 years ago

Staging was great, same for all songs!! Well done guys and Finnish broadcaster. Very impressive.

But the best song was Superman which was ruined by the IKEA lamps (Russia 2013?) and weak vocals by Sebastian. It’s a pity because the general public could relate to Superman and the beat was sick, similar to Sandstorm.

Look Away is not bad but it is repetitive and goes nowhere. I hope they combine the staging of Superman and Release Me in tel Aviv but to sum up i think Finland will quality to the final but flop like Saara and Cascada.

Gurki
Gurki
2 years ago

If this would be Sweden it would be in top 12

Milla
Milla
2 years ago
Reply to  Gurki

Yeah.. the 12th reject

Frisian esc
Frisian esc
2 years ago
Reply to  Gurki

Has this become the standard thing to say whenever a bad entry is released? It’s very tiring and i think every country would flop with this. The only cool side of this entry is the good staging plus darude’s meme effect.

Gurki
Gurki
2 years ago
Reply to  Gurki

I meant top 12 in the ESC final (if you didnt understand)

Milde
Milde
2 years ago

Okay, so all three songs were weak vocally, but there was also something terribly wrong with the sound system. AGAIN. You’d think they’d managed to fix it since last year but no!
BUT when they had to perform Look Away again after it won , I think it sounded much better so there is HOPE.
It’ll be good when we reach Tel Aviv and it’ll go to the final and Finns can be happy.

Leo M
Leo M
2 years ago

Starts promising but after 30 seconds I lose interest and it becomes very repetitive.

West
West
2 years ago

Ok, while the song I like the most is Superman – Look Away had the best staging tonight, not to mention that Sebastian’s vocals were least bad with this one, so no wonder it won. But tbh Sebastian’s vocals were pretty bad all evening – unless he improves it’ll be Gromee feat. Lukas Meijer 2.0

Alex
Alex
2 years ago
Reply to  West

Poland had a boring staging,Darude has invested in the staging

West
West
2 years ago
Reply to  Alex

What I meant by it was – they would get some points from televote, but not that much from juries.

Tom Ripley
Tom Ripley
2 years ago

Boring… so boring… average song…weak voice. The last favourite on my list.

Puff
Puff
2 years ago

Guys. UMK’s sound system has been terrible every year. Sebastian didn’t sing perfectly but you can blame the sound system too. It makes everything sound terrible, even Saara last year. Sebu will sound much better in Israel when he now gets to train his voice and the sound system is proper there.

Jo.
Jo.
2 years ago

Off post, but there’s clearly something about Switzerland. They are now Top 15 with the bookies, and they used to be placed in the bottom. Reminds me of Israel last year before Toy was released.

Alex
Alex
2 years ago
Reply to  Jo.

Switzerland is a big mystery this year, no rumors or anything. I think they will do the surprise!!! watch out

Nikko
Nikko
2 years ago
Reply to  Jo.

I hope the rumours about Luca Hänni are true because he will come with a banger and a dance performance!

M_K
M_K
2 years ago

Vocally, all three entries were extremely weak; I’d go as far as saying those were the weakest live vocals ever in a “one act” national final format. I don’t think it would have made much of a difference if they had chosen one of the other two songs. “Look Away” is a rather bland song with cringeworthy lyrics. The stage show was the most elaborate one of the night and yet it still felt quite random.

ESCFan2009
ESCFan2009
2 years ago
Reply to  M_K

Cringeworthy? Repetitive yes, but cringy? It is about looking away from bad things we could solve (climate change for instance) and asking “Is it in my head?” Am I the only one seeing it? Why people don’t do anything? Then the staging with the cube and showing the ice melting – that fits very good imho 😀

M_K
M_K
2 years ago
Reply to  ESCFan2009

In my opinion, it’s the least honest “save the world” anthem since Samantha Janus’s “A Message to Your Heart”.

ESC Fan
2 years ago

Already a thousand times better than Saara Aalto!

LjupchoMKD
LjupchoMKD
2 years ago

The vocal technique of Sebastian Rejman is poorer than average central African countries. He MUST work on it for Eurovision, or Finland might as well struggle to qualify. the song is average, but the staging really gives it a fresh appearance and a completely different dimension. Good luck Finland.

Gili
Gili
2 years ago

Bad..very bad

Gurki
Gurki
2 years ago
Reply to  Gili

You are just jealous because your country is the worst this year 😀

Gili
Gili
2 years ago
Reply to  Gurki

Totally not and my country even didn’t release the song yet….this song is just not good or interesting..I wish it was, I have nothing against Finland, the opposite

Fun or ban?
Fun or ban?
2 years ago
Reply to  Gili

Indeed

Gurki
Gurki
2 years ago

The best song won. The live performance was really good, if Sebastian can sing a bit louder it would be perfect. SR is a good singer, don’t write hate comments.
Superman was very weak and Release me was ok..
I think Finland will qualify to final because this year is zhit lolol.

Lourdes
Lourdes
2 years ago

The song is bland, his voice is even blander. Staging was cool though, but I don’t think it will be enough.

Gurki
Gurki
2 years ago
Reply to  Lourdes

Not enough to win ESC 2019. But to win is not most important 🙂

Lourdes
Lourdes
2 years ago
Reply to  Gurki

Actually, I meant not enough to qualify for the final 😉

Emma
Emma
2 years ago

Good luck Finland!

esc stan
esc stan
2 years ago

Expected

He needs to fix his vocals ASAP

Jo.
Jo.
2 years ago

darude look away from the sandstorm