If you’ve spent the last few weeks complaining about jury voting, singing Cha Cha Cha, or churning butter in a milkmaid’s outfit, then the Eurovision Hits Song Pack is made for you. Bolstering the Let’s Sing 2023 DLC roster with five songs, it’s a must for anyone who is in denial that Eurovision is over.
The five songs in the Let’s Sing 2023 – Eurovision Hits Song Pack are a smattering of winners from the past fifteen years. For £3.99 you get Duncan Laurence’s 2019 winner ‘Arcade’, Lena’s 2010 winner ‘Satellite’, Conchita Wurst’s 2014 winner ‘Rise Like a Phoenix’, Loreen’s champion of 2012 ‘Euphoria’ and – the odd one out in the group – Eleni Foureira’s 2018 runner-up, ‘Fuego’. A runner up: for shame, Let’s Sing.
It should be noted that, as much as you might want a Conchita outfit for your avatar, this is purely a song pack. There’s nothing else here to get you into the spirit of Eurovision. In a sense, that’s a disappointment, as we feel like there’s an audience for a full-blown ‘Beatles Rock Band’-style takeover of a major rhythm action game that is dedicated to Eurovision (with voting section, of course). But it’s also expected. Let’s Sing have tended to solely release song packs, and even their dedicated games like Let’s Sing Queen are just large-scale, glorified DLC.
In terms of song selection, it gets a heart B+ from us. To a song, these are all memorable bangers from Eurovision modern history. Virtually every corner of pop gets covered, from the glacial synth pop of ‘Arcade’, to the Lily Allen-esque ‘Satellite’ and – of course – the arch Bond theme of ‘Rise Like a Phoenix’. We hadn’t encountered ‘Fuego’ before, but it’s a latin pop hit that Shakira probably fired her agent for not securing. It ended up being our favourite of the bunch.
Credit goes to Let’s Sing for trying to find songs that work out the vocal pipes differently. Rise Like a Phoenix has you belting it out like Shirley Bassey; Satellite has a fast, half-rap cadence that takes some getting used to, while Euphoria has you strutting about like a pop queen. There’s been a deliberate attempt to make the actual singing feel varied.
But saying all that, there is still a sense of ‘what might have been’. Let’s Sing 2023 – Eurovision Hits Song Pack deliberately dodges the zeitgeist and doesn’t touch Eurovision 2023 at all, which feels like the easy way out. Anticipating or including the winner would have taken some work, but it would have made the pack feel fresher. The same goes for Sam Ryder’s ‘Space Man’. Would it have been so difficult to include the de facto reigning song from 2022? It certainly would have been a belter to sing.
Video-wise, the pack is fine but uninspiring. Eurovision winners of the past fifteen years were never going to have lavish Beyoncé-beaters in terms of music videos. Arcade is mostly Duncan Laurence moping about under the sea, Conchita swans about on a red divan, Lena dances about in a room – you get the idea. There’s barely a backing dancer or special effect in sight. But home-made charm is kind of the point. We don’t want our Eurovision hits to look like money has actually been spent on them.
We’d have taken better quality upscaling though. On more than one occasion, the videos were blocky and artefacted – Loreen’s ‘Euphoria’ was particularly affected – as if we were streaming the video over a bad connection on Netflix. We’re not sure why it’s the case. Surely there was a 4K version of the videos sitting in a vault somewhere?
Still, the Let’s Sing 2023 – Eurovision Hits Song Pack does what it intended to do. It gives us five of the best Eurovision hits of the past couple of decades, and lets us caterwaul over them. The lack of songs, and the slight safety in terms of their choice means that Let’s Sing 2023 – Eurovision Hits Song Pack doesn’t quite get douze points, but it did have us wishing that we had a backless sequin dress and a revolving stage.