LatviaA jolly song about a Cake to bake. OK. Cool and cheerful song that will have some panel members tapping their feet and maybe voting enough to get them in the Top 10 this year.
EstoniaTanja has a go at Loreen's style with the solid electro beat and a convenient male dancer. She shows a lot more flesh than her Swedish predecessor and moves around a bit quicker. It's a decent track but I don't see it being that popular or unpopular.
SwedenSo we know they'll be making a good effort. Almost all their entries stand as potential chart acts in their own right. This is no exception. More serious ballad, building as ballads usually do in Eurovision to a drum-assisted crescendo but not too annoyingly so. The echo is quite important but I am not sure she'll get that on the night. Neverthess this will appeal across the board and see Sweden into the Top 10, and, I reckon, quite high there too.
IcelandA bit crazy - all good stuff about not having prejudice, a bit too politically correct for me and too obviously put together for Eurovision. Not something I want to play again and doubt whether many others will but it's a safe vote for countries so expect it to get enough points to keep away from the bottom.
AlbaniaThey always seem to make the main competition and have some pretty individual entries that you either love or hate. This one has the ballad and bloke with a guitar doing rock stuff. The girl looks angry most of the time and it's an Evanescence type of track. Strong but it lacks any hook or, to be honest, much appeal - that singer isn't particularly watchable.
AzerbaijanThey'd love to win again and do keep making strong efforts. Here they come again this year with a potential #2. Pretty girl with gentle song that sounds like it ought to tell a story.
Nice enough but at digging out burning bullets from his chest I began to wonder what it was all bout. Ah, of course, it's all about trying to win this thing and that's not a bad effort at all.
UkraineWell, you have to worry with the title Tick Tock. The country will be getting some sympathy votes I suspect this year. I hope the singer doesn't come from Crimea or they'll be all kinds of problems. Assuming she isn't and that Ukraine hasn't been wiped off the map in its entirety then this is a jolly number but a bit desperate and tries a bit too hard. As always the girl is lovely and we'll be guaranteed some pleasant viewing. Sure, left hand side of the board but not a great deal more this year.
BelgiumIt really is time Belgium did better. here we have someone who looks like he won a Belgium's Got talent contest and is still wearing the same suit. Big chap, good voice, near opera style. Singing about mother, he is guaranteed to get some votes - no-one would want a song about mother to get nul points now would they. The Balkans will like this so there's a few votes guaranteed - and Italy and Malta too. Serbia won with something like this a few years ago. We should watch out for this as it is one of those that might just sneak up on the night if he sings really well.
MoldovaNo, I don't want to listen to this again. This is one of those annoying tracks that is oh so serious but never really gets anywhere.
San MarinoMaybe is the title and maybe this will be the year when little San Marino gets into the main competition and scores a few points. I can't see this getting many and it is a bit forgettable but, like Andorra, it's time we heard more from the little places.
PortugalThis started encouragingly enough - something we can dance along to perhaps in Latin style - but then it all goes a bit wrong. In fact it just goes on and that girl looks so angry. I would not want to meet her on a dark night in a Lisbon ally. Expect to see plenty of legs on show on the night and she may be able to hold that last note and not frighten us too much.
The NetherlandsSomething modern and interesting from Holland this year. They had a good entry last year and are really making quite an effort these days. This is folksy but with an insistent back beat and it grows with nice harmonies and it will appeal to Country fans too. I can imagine Mumford & Sons doing this and it would be #1. Now I think of it, we should have had them doing the UK entry.
I like this a lot. I would like to see it do well and feel it really should.