Best of the Bunch: The Trials – Iceland

Through our Best of the Bunch series, we gave a recap on the Eurovision entries from 2006 to 2015 and gave you the opportunity to choose your Best of the Bunch. As you may remember, the current Best of the Bunch winners were put into our ‘Ultimate Eurovision’ but it’s time to see which of the latest three entries have remained as your favourites! In our Best of the Bunch: The Trials series, we are going to recap the entries from a certain nation starting with 2016 and continuing through to the latest Eurovision season of 2018. Your job is to simply enjoy the music, and vote for your Best of the Bunch winner!

Today we’re travelling to the far north to a nation that has come close to winning the contest, but in recent years hasn’t been very fortunate. We are of course talking about Iceland, and other than difficult to pronounce names, the nation has sent some really great songs over the years. Today we will be focusing on the latest three entries, starting with 2016 and going through to the most recent, 2018. Once we’ve recapped the entries, it will be up to you to decide which of the acts is your Best of the Bunch!

Iceland 2016

For many years, Iceland had kept a qualification streak going but that streak was lost in 2015 with the non-qualification of their song Unbroken (which now that I think about it, is a bit ironic!). After that glitch, it was time to bring out the big guns, and that was returning artist Greta Salóme. We had seen her before as part of a duo with Jónsi, but this time she returned alone with her song Hear Them Calling. It was a hit with fans not only for the song, but also for the stage performance which was something we hadn’t seen before from Iceland. It was a contemporary performance that was well choreographed, and naturally Greta’s performance was on point. Unfortunately 2016 was quite a difficult year, and Iceland once again failed to qualify, finishing in 14th place with 51 points.

Iceland 2017

Fast forward a year, and once again through a national selection, it was decided that Svala would represent Iceland with her song Paper. Much like the year previous, it was an entry fronted by a strong female lead with a contemporary feel. Looking back at the Icelandic entries, this was the most modern entry we had seen from the nation in terms of the electronic elements of the song, and even her outfit was something extravagant! It seemed to have potential at the time, but unfortunately the nation found themselves in a similar position to the year before, finishing in 15th place with 60 points.

Iceland 2018

That brings us to the most recent Icelandic entry, which as you may remember was Ari Ólafsson with his ballad style song Our Choice. Coming after a song like Paper, and even Hear Them Calling, this seemed like a step back into the past, but there is always a place for ballads at Eurovision, especially if they are performed by incredible vocalists. Ari might be young, but boy can he belt out a note or two! Although this song wasn’t seen by the fans as an easy qualifier, his vocals and modest stage performance was enough to capture the support of some fans, but not enough to help bring Iceland back to the final. In fact, Ari finished last in the semi-final, unjustified and unfortunate, but that’s how the Eurovision cookie crumbles! He finished 19th with 15 points.

So now you’ve seen all three performances, it’s time to vote for your Best of the Bunch!

If you want more Best of the Bunch from Iceland, check out our original series:

If you want to check out who made our Ultimate Eurovision, check it out here:

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