Welcome to Xtra Insider, our new series which will give you an insight into how well each country was statistically likely to do this year, as well as what the team at ESCXTRA think of your favourite entries into (what would have been) this year’s contest! Today, we analyze and review Estonia!
Yes, this year’s contest has been cancelled…but that doesn’t mean we can’t love the songs! In this series, we’ll review each and every entry that would have taken part in this year’s Eurovision. On top of this, we’re introducing a new analysis section in which we take a look into each country’s history and how likely they would have been to do well this year. Our honest and brutal reviews and analysis will keep you entertained throughout what would’ve been the Eurovision season! We will also each give points using the usual Eurovision points system (12, 10, then 8 down to 1), and create an ESCXTRA leaderboard of the entries!
Today, we’ll be giving analysis and reviews of the Estonian entry, What Love Is by Uku Suviste, from Costa, Luke, Matt, Nathan P, Rodrigo and Simon. Let’s get started!
Estonia’s history at Eurovision
Estonia made their debut in the contest in 1994 after not making it through the qualification round in 1993. The country won and hosted one contest so far with winning in 2001 with Tanel Padar, Dave Benton & 2XL won the contest and Estonia hosting the following year. The country has ten top 10 results so far making in the most successful Baltic country in the contest. Since the introduction of semi-finals in 2004 they seven times and failed nine times.
This year’s entry
This year’s Estonian entry is “What Love Is” by Uku Suviste. Uku is a 37 year old singer, songwriter & music producer born in Võru, Estonia. He took part in Eesti Laul in 2017, 2019 and 2020, when he finally got the ticket to Eurovision. In the super final he received 68,2% of all the three acts competing after placing Top 3 with the jury and televote before. The song was written by Uku himself together with Sharon Vaughn.
How does this kind of song tend to do in the contest?
Male ballads could really go anywhere in the contest. We have them failing to qualify or winning shows. People might say songs like this are dated, but those typ of songs also can do well, because there is an audience for everything. Winning the national final like this could be a sign about in what direction the song could go in the contest. A lot of factors are going into this. Vocals and performance are probably the most important parts and based on the national final, this had potential.
Having attended Eesti Laul in person this year, I was convinced Jaagup was gonna walk it when I was watching rehearsals from the press centre. However, hearing the deafening cheers for Uku in the hall during the final, I knew I was in for an upset. I can’t deny Uku’s vocal talent and stage presence, but I can deny that this song is any good.
Dear GOD Estonia NO. Who hurt you?!? Send this back to 2002 where it belongs, then burn it! I could just see Uku on stage with some over the top interpretive dancer and his shirt blowing open by a wind machine (ok that bit at at least may be pleasant)…..far too much cringe.
I don’t think I’m the only one saying ‘dated’ here. It’s the kind of song that jogs the memory of an entry from a recent Eurovision, but you just can’t quite remember what song. Uku sings competently but there’s nothing much to hold the attention.
This is bad. As was about 95% of the other Eesti Laul entries. I mean come on now, what happened Estonia? This is completely uninventive. I am very tired of Sharon Vaughn songs infecting this contest like a never ending coronavirus.
Some will say dated, I will say timeless. The type of Estonian ballad I live for, impeccably performed by Uku. Amongst the ones from 2020 I enjoy listening to the most.
A strong ballad from Estonia, but perhaps one where less is more. Toned down a little, it might carry its sentiment a little more successfully. Some good vocals, but it would be nice if the song had a decent ending.
Therefore, Estonia scores 93 points in total!
Estonia ends up at 27th place with a score of 93 points.
- Bulgaria – 163
- Iceland – 162
- Russia – 156
- Malta – 154
- Israel – 148
- Germany – 142
- Serbia – 139
- Denmark – 136
- Ireland – 136
- Ukraine – 135
- Norway – 134
- Italy – 129
- Latvia – 121
- Romania – 121
- Armenia – 120
- United Kingdom – 120
- Australia – 117
- Netherlands – 113
- Austria – 111
- Belgium – 109
- North Macedonia – 107
- Czech Republic – 104
- Spain – 100
- Cyprus – 97
- San Marino – 97
- Albania – 97
- Estonia – 93
- Moldova – 82
- Belarus – 81
- Poland – 76
- Georgia – 72
- Slovenia – 53
Tomorrow, it will be the turn of Switzerland to be reviewed. For now, take another listen to the Estonian entry below!
Do you agree with our reviews of Estonia? What are your thoughts on What Love Is?
Let us know in the comments below and on social media @ESCXTRA