The Eurovision Song Contest is one of those events that you may not actively follow unless you live outside of Germany. After all, Germany is probably one of the most boring participants, if not even the most boring one, that submits the same shit every time. You get songs that sound like every other song submitted before. It’s weird. This year over 900 musicians submitted songs to the ESC committee for Germany and six got selected, and they practically all sound the same, not standing out at all. Felicia Lu’s “Anxiety” is an alright song but I already forgot the melody of it and I just listened to it. Meanwhile, songs like Conchita Wurst’s “Rise Like A Pheonix” (2014), Loreen’s “Euphoria” (2012), and Netta’s “Toy” (2018) still are memorable even years later. Lordi’s performance years back was amazing as well, of course, which brings us to today’s topic: Germany is unwilling to risk things.
Edit: I made two mistakes in this post that are now corrected. I said once that Eskimo Callboy were “nominees” instead of “applicants” which is now fixed. Also said that Germany didn’t make it in 2020 which was just wrong and I misunderstood a source there. But hey, those minor mistakes are fixed now.
The last few “successes” that Germany had, were Michael Schulte’s “You Let Me Walk Alone” (2018, Rank 4), Roman Lob’s “Standing Still” (2012, Rank 8), Lena’s “Taken By A Stranger” (2011, Rank 10), and Lena’s “Satellite” (2010, Rank 1). Other performances either rank at the bottom or last. Honestly, you can tell that it’s the same shit every time. “Standing Still” and “You Let Me Walk Alone” sounds basically the same. In 2011, people thought that Lena is probably gonna win it again even though “Taken By A Stranger” sucked. Heck, you know how Loreen (Sweden) won in 2012 with their song “Euphoria”? Well, in 2013, Germany sent in Cascada with a song named “Glorious” that sounds very very similar to “Euphoria”. That didn’t go well at all though because people don’t like the same shit every time.
So, among the applicants for this year were Eskimo Callboy, a Trancecore/Metalcore/Partycore/Post-Hardcore (something like that) band that I’ve been listening to since 2013/14 and I frankly like them. They’ve been gaining international success in the more recent years with their newest singles “Hyper Hyper”, “We Got The Moves”, and the latest one, “Pump It”. They didn’t make it into the finale because of… some reason. The reply that the jury gave was “They are very good boys and they make good music but they didn’t make” which is as unsatisfactory as Cascada’s attempt at creating “Euphoria” a year later – of course, it’s not plagiarism… it just sounds “very similar”. The show “Germany 12 Points” is where Germany gets to vote on which of these six identical songs will present Germany at the ESC 2022. It’s hosted by Barbara Schöneberger who is known for being against men putting on make-up… and really nothing else, I think?
It’s honestly a shame because Eskimo Callboy are not only different from everything that Germany has submitted in recent years but they’re also creative, a bit more on the alternate side of things music-wise and less mainstream, while also kind of bizarre? All of these would be great qualities to have for the ESC, especially after last year’s ESC which was taken home by Måneskin, an Italian rock band that I’ve been adoring for a few years now, Germany should know how well more alternative sounds work there. It’s not just about playing the same ballade every year but also about giving people a show and potentially even shocking them. Eskimo Callboy also has a large following all over the world and does make music that you can dance to quite well – for whatever reason though it didn’t cut it because Germany’s committee is hosted by ARD.
It’s ironic how S!sters’ “Sister” starts with “Tired of always losing” when they “won” in Germany – and got rank 25 during 2019’s ESC. But their song sounds like something that you’d use to put people to sleep. It’s boring and you don’t get people hyped up. It’s not creative or humorous and yes, they may be good at singing but I don’t think that anyone presenting their country at the ESC is “bad” at singing per sé, anyhow. I think people need a spark and authenticity to win. Language isn’t a barrier as your message and feelings get across even when you’re not singing in English. My point is that Germany sucks at their election method because for whatever reason we only need 6 nominees to vote for. For whatever reason, only Pop Music is allowed and we can only get ballads as well. It has to be the most generic type of song ever so that we score incredibly. The jury may not have realised yet that this isn’t Golf where having low scores is good.
And I sound very agitated and passionate about this when I really don’t care about the ESC anymore all that much. Yes, you can find good music through it so I generally just check out who’s participating/who participated after the fact but uh, I don’t really care all that much. I just hate that the jury had the nerves to reject Eskimo Callboy and to tell them that they should apply again in the next year when in reality anything “new” will never cut it. It doesn’t matter how popular something is globally or on a national level, that one committee is all that matters. You can pretend that “Germany votes for it” but that’s just a lie in the end because if this committee takes 944 applicants and shrinks it down to six nominees, then you only have six nominees to choose from. If you were to get only one nomination for the ESC, that one would win. It’s not a matter of “winning the people over”, it’s about winning this jury over. Meanwhile, in other countries, you have festivals where people have to perform and “win” and then you basically get these tournament-style performances and the best of the best end up getting voted for in a final show… whose finalist gets sent to the ESC. It’s a better system. Like, Germany just sucks.
My point is that I had low expectations already but holy shit, they didn’t even meet those. Eskimo Callboy seemed like a winner right away but I guess we don’t care about that at all given that most of the current nominees will probably rank in the middle to last ranks. Those are the best ranks, after all! While the band itself takes it with humour, I’m just kind of upset about the jury who seemed to belittle the band in their statement which sounded kind of… unrespectful. It’s a bummer. And really, it’s not about being enraged or anything like that, after all, it’s just the ESC, but I find it incredibly weird that the target demographic for most of the radio channels (where the jury comes from) isn’t more diverse to better reflect what people listen to in Germany. Having festivals or other votings throughout the year or in the first months of the years would be a lot better, in my opinion, and it could help out a great with finally scoring points or even winning again. I find it questionable that ARD is the one representing Germany and it’s even weirder that 944 applicants get shrunk down to 6 entries instead of going for 94 (~10%) whose music gets voted on or even 10 (aka 1% but rounded upwards because 9.4 is a weird number and because a top 10 works better). Instead of going for a big list that then gets shrunk down in votes, we get only six. Instead of increasing the number of nominations that can be voted on, we also… only get six. Weird, huh?