No.25: "This Is What It Feels Like" - Armin van Buuren.
This for me was 2013's equivalent of "Don't You Worry Child" (a song which, incidentally, placed at no. 32 in last year's annual countdown but went on to become one of my most played tracks of the first half of 2013).
This is the kind of song which gives EDM a good name, a rarity these days. Danceable and melodic, great vocals, and staying power. For a long time, the Eurovision rumour machine had Armin representing the Netherlands in 2014. Turned out to be wrong of course, but we live in hope.
No.24: "Tomorrow" - Gianluca Bezzina.
Good ol' Jeremy makes it to the 2013-50! From the 'Hey Soul Sister' template, Dr Gianluca prescribed a fun and feelgood song which deserved to do better than it did, although 8th place is very respectable indeed. I think this is probably my favourite ESC entry from Malta, and I'd like to see him come back again and win the whole thing. As Jade Ewen may have sung, "It's their time, it's their time" (groan).
No.23: "Ljubav je Svuda" - Moje 3.
Or as it's known in my world, death by styling. If you thought the angel/devil set up was ridiculous, that was nothing compared to the horror of those semi-final costumes. Which is a great shame as this is actually a pretty good pop song sung by three very talented solo vocalists who actually looked good as a band, although this was only ever going to be temporary. It would appear that Serbia does better with the Zeljko-type song, which they will probably come back with after they recover from their non-qualifying strop/financial difficulties (delete as appropriate).
No.22: "L'Essenziale" - Marco Mengoni.
OK, regular followers of my blog know that I was none too happy at the time of Sanremo, when they made the decision to send this song rather than another one - which will appear much later in my countdown. Moving on from that, there is nothing much wrong with a nice Italian man in a lovely blue suit singing a ballad which was a real grower. I really hope Italy wins ESC some time soon, although I have mixed feelings about them hosting...1991 ring any bells?
No.21: "Pronto A Correre" - Marco Mengoni.
If "L'Essenziale" was good, then this - the title track of his 2013 album - was even better. Co-written by none other than Mark Owen! This is just a cracking uptempo pop-rock song which showed off Marco's versatility.