Thursday, 9 May 2019

Harder and harder

Poland
Tulia
Fire of Love (Pali się)

We all have a hobby. Some of us like painting, or dancing, or archery. Some of us are into flashmobbing, or the Wombles. Some of us follow the Hothouse Flowers around on tour. Some people like taking off their shirt and banging their head. All of these people are, of course, massive losers who need to GET A LIFE.


I, on the other hand, am quite different. I live life to the full, with conviction and purpose. You see, when I'm not tending to my collection of MP3s of Eurovision entries over the years, or my extensive collection of sung local radio jingles through the ages, I document, collect and catalogue video clips of Eurovision interval acts- ready to hand down to the next generation of Dickinsons.

There's 1984's "The Art of Drawing" where a picture moves because some dancers move it, like a Tony Hart VT only stretched over 15 miserable minutes and done in Luxemburg. There's 1989's William Tell overture when some tedious archery stunt went wrong. In 2010 they made me stand up so we could "flashmob" to a Madcon album track, although most of our row "fuckedoff" to the bar instead.

When we hosted in 1975, making good use of the things that we found, we booked the bloody Wombles to fill the gap - and then in 1988 the Irish were so broke having won every year for what felt like a decade, they just stuck on a clip of the Hothouse Flowers singing in various locations in Europe - but given they were singing their hit "Don't go" it didn't quite deliver the tourist boost the countries had all hoped for.

Most years though we don't get high octane post-apocolypotic stomp, or the launch of a global dance phenonenon, or even the President's son in law doing an eight minute nationalistic rock number- we get searingly dreary local people from what's left of their publicly funded arts sector wailing interpretative twaddle about their nation's history and culture whilst Europe nips back to the kitchen to fill up the Doritos ready for the scoreathon. Most years - especially now they have to do three of them to cover the semis - the interval acts are rubbish. Countries think they're showing off the best of their arts and culture, but people don't watch the Eurovision for arts or culture. They watch it for a Hen Do set to music, or dancers on stilts, or moments where an artist's song is so bad he hits himself in the face with his own microphone.

So the cheek of this year's Polish effort is that it is, in effect, a bad year's interval act. It's four women in Polish ethnic dress, so just for a minute Europe's dads will think they're getting a rerun of Carry on Krakow, but in fact they're getting a "combination of classical characteristics mixed with folk music and modern production" that is a "unique style of Polish folk called "śpiewokrzyk" which means "white voice" or "screaming sing" - but to be honest may as well translate as "unlistenable toss".

We're getting Madonna this year, apparently. Yes - child snatcher Madonna. As the bloody interval act. Bring back Jan Delay, all is forgiven.