Serbia: "Nije Ljubav Svar" - Zeljko Joksimovic. One of the big ballads of this year, and although as you know I'm not a ballad fan, this has grown on me after a few listens although it gets terribly overcooked towards the end. An absolute qualifier from the 'semi-final of death' and a guaranteed top 5 place in the final.
FYR Macedonia: "Crno i Belo" - Kaliopi. It's all a bit too tortured for me to be honest, but they drop the beat in halfway through and it makes it remotely interesting but nothing more. Might pick up a few Balkan stray votes but can't see it qualifying.
Netherlands: "You and Me" - Joan Franka. Dare I say, be very afraid? For some bizarre reason it reminds me of http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHhyyRByuJ0
feel free to agree or disagree with me :) In a very tight semi-final this could be a surprise qualifier.
Malta: "This Is The Night" - Kurt Calleja. This is in the style of the Swedish dance-pop-boys, and the middle 8 even recalls that of "Amazing" - although it doesn't really explode, on first listen it is rather nice and listenable and probably better than most of the (by now forgettable) songs in semi-final 1.
Belarus: "We Are The Heroes" - Litesound. Someone should really do a mash-up of this and Kelly Clarkson's "Stronger" :) Another song which appealed to me on first listen, he is very cute but I wonder if they will wear those awful outfits in Baku? It wouldn't be the first time at ESC that bad styling killed a good act/good song.
The final part of my Eurovision preview will be published here on Saturday 21st April.