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Throwback Thursday: Life looks better in Cyprus

"Tell me about your feelings" for this song

As is the case for many Eurovision years, the fandom can’t really decide who their winner of 2010 is. The two typical camps are either Germany or Turkey (makes sense, since they got 1st and 2nd, respectively). But you hear other songs in the mix too: Romania, Ukraine, Albania, Iceland, and even non-qualifiers like Croatia or Latvia.

But every now and again, you’ll come across a rare eurofan that will swear up and down that Cyprus should have won in 2010. And you know what? They really do make a good point. Before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s look back to 2010 for a quick second and learn a thing or two about the Cypriot entry.

Who are Jon Lilygreen and the Islanders?

The Islanders are a group consisting of six members from five countries: England, Wales, Scotland, Norway, and Cyprus. That last member was enough for the group to compete in the Cypriot national final, Epilogi Tis Kypriakis Symmetochis.

They competed against past and future Eurovision stars, such as Constantinos Christoforou (Cyprus 1996 and 2005) and Hovig (Cyprus 2017).  Also, had they not been disqualified, Deep Zone (Bulgaria 2008) would have also competed. In the end, Jon Lilygreen and the Islanders won both the jury and the public vote; thus, “Life Looks Better In Spring” was Cyprus’s Eurovision entry in 2010.

At Eurovision

Cyprus performed 14th in the second semifinal in Telenor Arena in Oslo, Norway on May 27, 2010. In the semifinal, the island nation qualified for the final, finishing tenth in the semifinal with 67 points, 12 coming from Croatia. They finished five points above 11th placed Sweden, marking the only time (as of September 2018) that Sweden would fail to qualify for the Eurovision grand final.

Two days later, Cyprus performed third in the grand final running order (ouch), and inevitably came 21st in the final with 27 points. They received a top score of 12 shockingly from Greece.

Grand Final performance of “Life Looks Better In Spring”

For me, “Life Looks Better in Spring” is the second best Cypriot entry to ever go to Eurovision (sorry but Lisa Andreas will always be my fave). Living in America, this folky/singer-songwriter style isn’t uncommon, and this honestly would not be uncommon in charts for such music. Not to mention that Jon Lilygreen is one of my favorite male vocalists in the ’10s. In short, I think this song deserved more 12s than the obligatory one from Greece.

Other opinions from the Team

Natalie

When finding out I had to write a review on this song, I had no recollection on what it sounds like. Maybe that alone tells you my opinion on it. That being said, when I came around to listening to it for the first time in forever, I was pleasantly surprised. While parts of “Life Looks Better In Spring” sound like some 5-member 90s boy band is putting their heart and soul in to the performance, it’s a good, solid song that is generally likeable. Nothing for me to go wild about, but it’s nice, just nice.

Isaac

This song is one I’ve always overlooked, a singer with one guitar isn’t always a winning combination, and though I watched Eurovision in 2010, it wasn’t a song I remembered well from that night. But revisiting it, it seems rather rousing, with lyrics that are connecting with me in the same way similar songs like Malta’s Tomorrow (2013), Iceland’s Angel (2001) and even Norway’s My Heart Is Yours from the same year, and overall is an enjoyable listen in one of the ways I love Eurovision for, making me enjoy songs I wouldn’t expect to like. Lovely that this throwback has given me a bit more appreciation for ‘Life Looks Better In Spring’.

Yassia 

Surprisingly, I totally forgot that this song existed and that it was an entry from Cyprus. However, listening to it my first though was: “Wow, that’s such a great song! Must have been top 5 or something, how weird that I don’t remember it”. When listening to it second time I realized I remember it and even actually back in 2010 I really liked it. What a pity these guys ended up so low ;( I agree with Sean, for me this song is basically the second most-liked entry from Cyprus after Eleni.

Wiv

This was my number three in 2010, behind Turkey (I have loved maNga since 2008, so no surprise there) and Russia (I know…). I was soooo happy when it qualified for the final, and said that either Cyprus or Belgium would “steal” all the “guy with a guitar” votes. Needless to say, I’m not at all happy with the result, even though I also liked Tom and his guitar. “Life Looke Better in Spring” is my second favorite Cypriot entry, beaten only by Mihalis Hatzigiannis’ “Genesis” from 1998. Also, the video is super cute! And I would love it if Jon Lilygreen would return to the contest, perhaps representing the UK? Or even Wales? 

Do you like Cyprus’s entry from 2010? “Tell us about your feelings” in the comments! (Also I know I already made that joke but whatever it’s my article don’t judge me.)

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