Will a Finnish Punk Band with Down Syndrome Be in the Eurovision?


Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät

The Eurovision Song Contest, the gloriously kitsch paean to Eurotrash pop music, might get shaken up this year if a punk band is selected to represent Finland.

As Death and Taxes reports, “PKN (Pertti Kurikan Nimipaivat) is a four-piece punk band whose members all have Down Syndrome—some are also autistic. They’ve been playing together for the last six years and were the centerpiece of a 2009 documentary called “The Punk Syndrome,” which explored the band as a vehicle for self-expression and raising awareness about Down Syndrome.”

barTampere

The documentary’s website informs you that “the members of our band are four middle-aged, mentally handicapped men. The music is, of course, Finnish punk … The subjects of the lyrics range from social problems to unpleasant pedicures.”

If they get into Eurovision, it will make last year’s Austrian transsexual winner seem old hat.

GHEurovisionAW-20130517131322717034-620x349

Fluffsters from Ireland and the U.K. are of course more than familiar with the Eurovision Song Contest. If you have never seen it, it’s almost impossible for me to describe the sheer awfulness of what you have been missing. Several years ago the New Yorker‘s Anthony Lane wrote this wonderful primer.

blog280512_eurovision

As the title suggests, it’s a song competition open only to Europeans. It makes American Idol look classy. It’s been running for more than fifty years. Very few of the acts are memorable or gain success outside of their own countries (with the exception of ABBA, which won the contest with Waterloo” in 1974 ).

eurovision10v2v3

Combine the tawdriness of a second-rate beauty pageant combined with the forced jollity of a North Korean variety show, then have Liberace run the event: that’s a close approximation of the contest’s tone.

images

The Irish comedy Father Ted parodied the contest rather brilliantly (Ireland has the embarrassing habit of winning the Eurovision quite often). For all its faux-glamour, though, the contest has a certain endearingly tacky charm. And as forgettable as the songs are, they’re all generally pop. A punk song by PKN would really make this year’s contest memorable.

I wish PKN all the very best of luck.

A shorter version of this article appeared at 2paragraphs.com

Advertisements

13 thoughts on “Will a Finnish Punk Band with Down Syndrome Be in the Eurovision?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s