In recent years, Cyprus has turned itself into a sender of bops and bangers to the contest, most notably in 2018 with “Fuego“. They have slightly dialled down the tempo for their 2022 offering (once again internally selected) but it retains that ethnopop vibe and a catchy chorus (and a solo female lead). They’ve not hit the heights of 2018 with the follow up entries but can Andromache with “Ela” change that?
As already mentioned, this is another internal selection, and once again it’s under the Panik Records label (as has been case for most of their recent entries). Ela has a plethora of songwriters, including Greek Cypriots, Kosovan Albanians, and inevitably, Swedes. It also included Arash as a songwriter, one half of Azerbaijan’s entry in 2009. Andromache herself is also somewhat pan-European being a German-Greek. She is a former contestant on the The Voice of Greece (2015) and has released a number of singles from 2017 onwards.
“Ela” fits very neatly into the Eurovision midtempo ethnopop category – and it’s a genre I do enjoy a lot. I enjoy the the fusion of modern pop with folk/ethnic instruments and sounds, especially when there’s a catchy chorus or beat drop involved. Many eurofans also enjoy this sort of thing as well, and “Ela” certainly seems to have been well received and is creeping up in the betting odds as well.
This is a good placing in my rankings, though I will admit I did have this even higher at one point before I listened again a couple of times – I just felt myself not quite so enamoured of the verses (and had been placing more weight on the chorus). Nevertheless, this is yet another solid showing from Cyprus and great to have some traditional regional instruments being used once again.
If grand final qualification was down to the fandom alone, then this would be a sure fire qualifier. Andromache has not performed live in person at any of the pre-parties but she did do a live in studio recording for one of the parties and her live vocal seems like it will be pretty solid. My only note of caution is that another ethnopop song that was loved by the fandom failed to qualify in 2018 (Greece’s “Oniro mou“) though that may have been the unispired staging. Cyprus will be hoping this doesn’t become another shock non-qualifier.
Cyprus in the Eurovision Song Contest
First entered: 1981
Appearances (excluding this year): 37
Best result: 2nd in 2018
2021’s result: 16th