After weeks of teasing the world with only the title ‘El Diablo’, the Cyprus Eurovision entry by Elena Tsagrinou has finally been released.

We were promised an up-tempo track which would be catchy and Elena has certainly lived up that script, releasing her official contest song for ‘El Diablo’ weeks ago.

Cypriot broadcaster CyBC confirmed that Greek star Elena Tsagrinou would fly the flag at the Eurovision Song Contest in The Netherlands in November last year. The 26-year-old Athenian songstress will perform in the Eurovision’s First Semi-Final, at Rotterdam’s Ahoy Arena this May.

The entry is penned by producer Jimmy “Joker” Thornfeldt, a Swedish Grammy-Award winner. He collaborates on the tune with Laurell Barker, Oxa, and Thomas Stengaard.

The up-tempo pop-dance feels current and mainstream. The radio friendly hit, which has entered London Greek Radio playlists. It is a competitive song, which no doubt is helping with its hopes and chances of qualifying and on the left-side scoreboard.

The talented songwriters have said that Spanish title ‘El Diablo’ [“Devil”], is a metaphor, which refer to a ‘bad boy’ in this context or even “aliti” in Greek.

LGR’s Tony Neophytou’s said, “Cyprus have a really catchy song with a useful hook and is instantaneous which a Eurovision song requires. The track starts with the chorus straight away, enhancing the immediate and instant nature of this song.”

The song is about a woman crying out for help after falling in love with a ‘bad boy’ known as ‘El Diablo’ and coming to identify with and bond with her abuser.

Elena playfully purrs with whisper-like prayer asking for help “Mamacita tell me what to do…” in the pre-choruses.

The children’s nursery chant in the middle eight sounds eerily scary and is a touch of fun.

CyBC in a statement said the song describes an abusive relationship and what it means to be a victim of this abuse. “The song represents the age-old battle between good and evil and it speaks of a problematic relationship between a man and woman who suffers from Stockholm Syndrome – the psychological condition when a victim of abuse identifies and bonds with their abuser – who seeks help to get out and the truth always shines.”

Cyprus will be staged with the help of Austrian artistic director Marvin Dietmann who helped Austria to a Eurovision triumph in 2014 with their song ‘Rise Like a Phoenix’.

The involvement of the Austrian creative highlights the Cypriot ambition to impress at this competition.

Elena Tsagrinou said, “My professional team is working extremely hard, with strict disciplined five-hour rehearsals every day for a while. My mindset feels like that of an athlete that is training for something huge, like this contest [translated].”

Mr Neophytou’s view, “Cyprus chances at qualifying are good and in a semi-final with competition in this genre. The catchier Cypriot song, and elevated staging helps to sell it, let’s hope the song qualifies.”

The Cypriot delegation will be quietly optimistic about their qualifying chances for a sixth year. The best ever runners-up result with Eleni Foureira’s ‘Fuego’ in 2018.

Elena is the star of the official music video with her dancing solo which suggests a complete package as a performance singer and stage artist. Her sassiness and seductive gazes are a nice, subtle touch, which the song requires. She is likeable, attractive, and telegenic which helps sell the song. Elena’s joined by her fellow male dancers as song climaxes, hoisted mid-air on the dancer’s shoulders.

Elena began her music career in 2008 as the lead soloist of the Greek band OtherView, before pursuing a solo career after she left them in 2018.

Cypriot chiefs have stuck to the successful formulae, of internally picking artist and song-package. Elena is signed to Panik Records one of Greece’s biggest music labels in Greece, and Cyprus, releasing many top hits from Cypriot and Greek artists which are everyday hits on the LGR air-waves.

Elena performs in the running order of 16 at slot number 8.

Cyprus competes in the First Eurovision Semi-Final which airs on Tuesday 18th May on BBC Four. The Top 10 qualifying counties through to the Final on Saturday 22nd May, on BBC One.

London Greek Radio wishes Elena and Cyprus the best of luck in the Eurovision.

Article written by Tony Neophytou