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Well, I got a tape of ESC 1990 recently and I went crazy about it.  I have been wanting to hear those songs for a long time, specifically ex-Yugoslavia's Hajde da ludujemo.  So, when I was home during the school break, I watched the tape for at least 10 times and I reviewed it.

1. Spain: It was very unfortunate to have that mishap so early in the night.  I laughed my ass off (as did my parents also) while watching the confused audience and the even-more-confused conductor who was kind of getting frustrated judging by the expressions on his face.  Nevertheless, the girls did a superb job and the song opened the 90's in a fabulous way.

2. Greece: This is one of the few Greek entries I do not fancy that much.  I only like the instrumental introduction to the song and the chorus a little bit.  It's not my type of Greek music (Anixiatika, Pia prosefchi) so I do not like it a whole lot. They could have chosen a singer other than that tired-looking fashion disaster. (Now, don't all performers in Zagreb fit this description?)  And what is with the yelling at the end? Totally unnecessary!

3. Belgium: I like this very much. It sounds very refreshing and the language is so musical.  What I do not understand is why did they all need those bands behind them?  I mean, we know the orchestra was playing the music accompanied by backing tracks. Oh, one more thing: can someone tell me what Macedomienne stands for?

4. Turkey: This sounds like a child's game. I can't really tell it's Turkish unless I see the beginning subtitle which says so.  And again: wrong singer!  He is just too old for these type of songs. Nonetheless, the melody is catchy, even though it is not my idea of Turkish music.  And that backing singer deserved a lot more exposure to camera and a closer place to it, as she sang throughout the song pretty loudly.

5. The Netherlands: The singer has to be the best, or at least the classiest dressed person on the night. The song verses lack the power of the chorus, which is very easy to listen to. That is the only part of the song I really liked.  The verses just sound terrible sung in Dutch (no offense, my friends :) ).

6. Luxembourg: Like Belgium, I really liked this song from the start, as it begins very melodically. The song is one of my faves of the night.  She could have moved a little bit more. Anyways, it was very nice seeing that girl play the keyboard.

7. United Kingdom: Oh, when I heard the beginning lyrics, I was choking from laughter.  It was so funny. Such cheesy lyrics in a UK song are unbelievable. I don't know what it was (maybe the accent), but her pronounciations sounded awful: playnet etc. Oh, and the hair!  The blond backing vocal on her right (viewers' left) can sing much better. Even my parents thought so. A catchy melody, but a rather bad song overall. The dance routine was a bit unimaginative (well, at least they had one, you're probably thinking.)

8. Iceland: A typical 90's power-rock song. Sounds a bit ex-Yugoslavish, catchy, happy, yada, yada, yada. I don't place it high on my list. And I hate how that guy moves his lips! So annoying!

9. Norway: I H-A-T-E the beginning. It is totally unfitting to the rest of the song. I like the faster part of the song, but nothing special at all. And what the fuck is with those men's pants and mini-jackets?  They look gruesome. But, then again, 1998's fashion looks obsolete to us by now probably. And, by the way, I like when in the end, the guy sings together with his backing vocals, but in a different key. Nice.

10. Israel: Beginning: bad. Middle: bad. Ending: bad. Come on now, is this really a song or a joke from Israel? It certainly is funny. Even the Hebrew sounds bad in this song. Or is that the performer who really pronounced it strangely? And somebody tell me why she felt the need to sit down?

11. Denmark: Close your legs like a real lady!  This is the first thing my mother noticed. That and the bad, bad hair. And addition to these, I noticed she can't move. About the song: boring but at least trying to sound upbeat. She basically looked like a small kid on TV.

12. Switzerland: This I like! I hadn't heard it since 1990 and frankly I had forgotten it, so when I heard it again it definitely stole my heart. It replaces Bandido as my favorite of 1990. The song is very melodic, very ballady, yet very catchy. I love the violin.

13. Germany: Again, a catchy melody, but nothing special. I wonder if Germany sent Daniel, the Slovene guy, on purpose. Given that Ralph was involved with the song, I would say yes. I am glad Daniel did not wear that awful panst-mini-jacket combo.

14. France: This is my kind of song. Ethnic, melodic and in addition happy, cheery, and upbeat. The drums are a big plus too. My third favorite of the night. I do not like the two dancers behind the singer and I do not like her dress. She did not fit in at all. My favorite part of the song is the drum instrumental.

15. ex-Yugoslavia: Tajci owned the set!  She had a great voice, which soundedespecially cute when she ocasionally laughed into the microphone. This is my 4th favorite of the night, and it's among my top 50 of all time. This could have easily won and I was surprised by the moderate placing. The only thing I dislike about the performance is Tajci's hand gestures that made no sense at all.

16. Portugal: Just another ordinary song in a sea of ordinary songs. But I like the "...ha sempre alguem..." part of the song. That's most of the song, ain't it? :) Again, the hair is out-of-this-worldly. And the outfit? Musical notes? Reminds me of that heart Lydia held between her na-nas in Jerusalem: both are cheap accessories.

17. Ireland: Boring bullshit! And to know this shit almost won! Oh, goodness! The Irish just bore me to death with their dreadful, fart ballads. They just make me want to use the FF button on my VCR. This is the only time I used it while watching ESC 1990. There, now you know how I feel about these kind of songs.

18. Sweden: A whole lot of "ah's." A nice, soft melody, but why were there four male vocals? And ugly male vocals, come to think of it. "Som en vind..." is the part of the song I like, but I do not dislike the rest of it either.

19. Italy: What an awful winner. 5th or 6th place would have been better suited. If this hadn't won, we wouldn't have had the awful ESC 1991, which is many people's least favorite contest.  The song is good and easy to listen to, but I just don't think it should have won in 1990. The part of the song I like the most is when the chorus starts. "E una canzon' italiana" is just a very good part of the song.

20. Austria: Oh, come on! They did not really think they'd be able to persuade us into believing that this song was a symphony. The intro was totally unnecessary given that the song came out to be an upbeat number. If it were a slow orchestral ballad throughout the three minutes, it would have made sense. What I like about the performance is when in the beginning the vocals walk away from the lead singer one after another. I loved that.
21. Cyprus: Just as Horis skopo was a disappointing Greek entry, Milas poli is its Cypriot counterpart. I usually love Cypriot songs, but as long as they are ethnically influenced. The singer's dancing and singing really made me dislike this song even more.

22. Finland: What is wrong with Europe? Every time I listen to a Finnish entry that did poorly I always ask myself this question. I really like Fri? and I think that it was worthy of a top 10, or even a top 15 placing.

Here is my top 22 of 1990:
1. Switzerland
2. Spain
3. France
4. ex-Yugoslavia
5. Finland
6. Belgium
7. Luxembourg
8. Italy
9. Iceland
10. Sweden
11. Austria
12. The Netherlands
13. United Kingdom
14. Germany
15. Denmark
16. Portugal
17. Turkey
18. Norway
19. Greece
20. Cyprus
21. Israel
22. Ireland

The entire show was not anything special. The stage, the presenters, the audience all seemed a bit mediocre to me. I do not know if it was the quality of the ESC 90 video tape I received, but the stage seemed a bit dark and often was worsened by the quasi-light show. Sometimes it looked nice, but overall it was too dark for my taste.
As for Oliver and Helga, they both were professional, but they too were a bit dark. Though they insisted on how exciting it all was, it was clear that they did not know what they were talking about. It all reminded me of Croatian 199 Dora, with Oliver and Vlatka. They too were tryng to ensure us that it was an exciting show, when in fact it was boring. What was wrong with the audience? They just looked dead. No flags, no screams, no waving, no enthusiasm, and way too many suits and ties!