Artist: Madame Monsieur
Betting Odds: 17/1
In 2018 France moved away from their usual internal selection process and gave the French public a chance to pick their act and song for Eurovision. The show, entitled ‘Destination Eurovision’, had three episodes (two semi finals and a final), had an all star panel and saw 18 songs compete for the crown. The selection show was met with favourable reviews from fans and it was the married duo Madame Monsieur who were chosen to go to Lisbon for France.
Their song ‘Mercy’ tells the tale of a Nigerian refugee child who was born at sea on the way to hopefully start a new life in France. The title refers to the child’s name. It is told from the perspective of the child, narrated in the first person which makes the song all that more personal. Mercy becomes a metaphor for all the people who have had to leave their homes in recent times mainly in parts of Northern Africa and the Middle East, and in particular in Syria due to outbreak of civil war. These people have risked dangerous methods to leave their country and seek refuge elsewhere in Europe.
The song is very successful in conveying emotions. Rather than expressing generic sentiments about world peace which a lot of Eurovision songs fall into the trap of (so greatly parodied by Mans Zelmerlow at Petra Mede in the 2016 Contest with interval song ‘Love Love Peace Peace’), ‘Mercy’ takes a specific issue in society, in this case the Migrant Crisis and shines the spotlight on it. Using the one example of the child called Mercy, they effectively showcase the struggle and the journey that many people have had to make.
Not only do Madame Monsieur tackle a big current issue, the song is also a great modern synth pop record. The pair have been making music together since 2013 and their five years of experience really shows. The pair are comfortable together on stage and Émilie’s vocal in particular is hauntingly spectacular.
France automatically get to perform in the final as a result of being one of the Big Five nations. As the final approaches, the betting odds for France have shortened and I think France could be on to something with this. The song could see France maybe even better Amir’s sixth place in 2016, the best result they’ve had in recent years.
For more information on the artist here is 10 Things About…Madame Monsieur!
The full lyrics to the song are here and check out the video below!