A quick recap: it's been a shockingly underwhelming year so far for MGP: very little has impressed me in the previous heats. Heat 3 wasn't much better to be honest, however there was a slight improvement in the general standard of the songs.
The everlasting search for Utooooopia! Forever till the end of time! Well, not quite, but believe it or not, this little Rammstein-lite number, "Utopia" might turn out to be one of my favourite national finals songs this year. Gothminister looked as if they've been rifling through the remnants of Marilyn Manson's make-up box, whilst the lead singer just looked as he's demolished a strawberry jam sandwich. What a messy eater! Unfortunately I never saw this going to the final as Gromth seem to have sewn up the metal ticket this year.
Adelén is very young and very pretty, and I wouldn't be too surprised if the Ina Wroldsen co-write "Bombo" ends up representing Norway this year. If Bombo was a stick of rock it would have "holiday hit" all the way through it - bubblegum pop mixed with Latin phrases and rhythms - but her enthusiasm outweighs her vocal ability and I would have my doubts about how well she could deliver the song on the big night in May. But for everything else there's backing singers, and none of that stuff did "La La Love" any harm, did it?
The most notable thing about country/bluegrass band Lucky Lips is the lead singer's pink hair. That's all really, as the banjo-plucking "Sweet and Heavy" was irritating beyond belief. Texas Lightning they most definitely ain't. But the judges responsible for choosing the wildcard for Oslo obviously saw something in it which I didn't.
My first thought when I heard Gaute Ormåsen singing "Awake" - Gaute singing in English? What's happened to all the Norwegian-ness? This started off sounding like a filler album track by an anonymous boyband, then it hit the chorus and suddenly it started to soar in the classic tradition of Norwegian pop. A little Donkeyboy-esque. Actually I wish Donkeyboy would enter MGP and win it and then I would be very happy indeed. This isn't a winner, but it will be one of the (very few songs) which will last beyond national finals season for me this year.
"We are the young" sang Anina on the 5th song of the evening, "The Young". As opposed to Fun singing "We Are Young" which is much better than this. Unoriginal anthemic bubblegum Avril Lavigne, all rock-chick posing and no substance, and vocally, a mess.
Would "Not Afraid" be any better? Winta certainly sold the song well but there was nothing special about it. Yet another generic Guetta-styled hands-in-the-air chorus which seems to be everywhere this year and which even the song contests haven't escaped.
Finally, Sirkus Eliassen, who would appear to be a Norwegian variant of LMFAO. Silly rap nonsense songs historically haven't gone down well at ESC so I couldn't see Norway choosing "I Love You Te Quiero" as the MGP winner. It was rather entertaining though. First Bombo and now this combination of holiday hit chorus and Norsk rapping - is it July already? Have we wandered into holiday season by mistake?
Fast-forward to the results: it's Adelén, Gaute and Sirkus Eliassen who go on to the final, with Lucky Lips getting the wild card.
If winners are judged by the iTunes download chart there is already one clear winner, "Bombo". Yes, it's a catchy song, but I'm still unconvinced if it would do so well at Eurovision as so many countries send similar entries. My favourite song of the final line-up is Datarock's "The Underground" however it's not going to win. Margaret Berger is in with a very good chance and if she wins MGP, she would probably the closest we would ever get to Robyn appearing in Eurovision! Even though it's been a few disappointing weeks, I always love the final of MGP and I'm sure they'll put on a fabulous show as ever. Which I will hopefully get round to reviewing soon!