Belgium unveils first songs for 2011

The sun has barely set on summer 2010 and already countries are kick starting their preparations for the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest in May.

Sweden and Albania have announced the dates and venues for their national selections. Cyprus has even gone ahead and selected their singer. But its Belgium that has truly got the 2011 Eurovision season rolling with broadcaster RTBF’s rather innovative online platform which they’ll be using to select the country’s song and singer.

Basically, aspiring Eurovision contenders can upload their songs onto the platform and get people to invest in it. The songs that manage to rack up 20,000 euros will then proceed to the second stage of the selection, which will be a televised national final with the song being selected by a mixture of public televote and expert jury. Phew!

Although the platform was only launched a few days ago, we’re already seeing a number of songs being uploaded and gathering up euros.

Léa Clément is hoping to represent Belgium with 'Où s'en vont nos rêves?'.

I’ve had a listen and my favourite song by far is the lovely ‘Où s’en vont nos rêves?’ by the talented Léa Clément. The song is a sweet combination of pop and classic French chanson. The melody is subtle but grabs you on the first listen, which is important for a Eurovision entry. I felt that the chorus could have benefited from having the violins featured a bit more prominently to emphasize the melody but I guess that, should the song make it to the second stage, the production will be amped up. But it’s a lovely song and the only one of two from the lot that I listen to repeatedly. You can listen to ‘Où s’en vont nos rêves?’ by clicking here and then on the ‘Play’ icon off on the side.

Another really good song is ‘Ice Blood’ by Gautier Reyz, which is the second song I find myself going back for more. It’s contemporary, upbeat and catchy. Gautier sounds a bit like Metro Station, but with a slight French accent, which is actually quite cool. You can listen to ‘Ice Blood’ here.

Other notable mentions are ‘Taste Of Today’ by Krystel Yorke, ‘J’imagine’ by Double Vie and seventies throwback ‘Doesn’t She Notice’ by Wilhelm Schweigamer.

‘Ice Blood’ is currently leading the pack with ‘Où s’en vont nos rêves?’ coming in second. Yay! My two favourite songs are doing well.

Overall it’s a good crop of songs and with more artists adding their songs to the fray, the Belgian national selection is shaping up to look pretty promising.

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