2020 saw the second annual national final for Australia. Ten acts took part in the show with Montaigne and her modern pop song winning over some heavyweights in the Australian music scene.
Eurovision: Australia Decides was once again hosted in the Gold Coast on the countries Eastern seaboard. Hype had been built up around international artist Vanessa Amorosi and local hero Casey Donovan who brought strong entries to the competition, even if they were a little safe. This ultimately helped propel Montaigne to the top of the scoreboard with with her innovative and contemporary indie pop song.
Don’t Break Me is a song focusing on the end of a relationship and how all parties should stay amicable during the break up, even if it is difficult at times to do that. It is an emotional and contemplative piece of music with incredible vocals. Montaigne a Sydney based artist, shot onto the music scene in 2016 with her Top 5 album Glorious Heights and an ARIA win for Best Breakthrough Artist.
The EuroVisionary team have had their say on this years Australian entry below:
‘2020 sees Australia celebrate their 5th anniversary of being competitors in the contest. A country known for their polished pop bangers and ballads bring a contemporary mid tempo indie song that stands out from the crowd. Montaigne’s vocals, are fragile yet I wouldn’t call them weak, the staging in the National Final was interesting, yet after last year we know they have the ability to refine their staging. This for me was a definite qualifier and could have given Australia their best result since 2016.’
‘A memorable song a not so memorable stage performance. Is still cannot see the relation between the lyrics and the harlequin outfit but I am confident the jurors would have rewarded her vocals.’
‘Australia was among my favourites to win Eurovision 2020. I fell in love with “Don’t Break Me” after listening to it for the very first time. The Australian entry is a powerful, strong and contemporary song and Montaigne’s vocal perfectly evokes the broken relationship throughout the song.’
‘We all have different taste. Some songs speaks to us while others don’t. What one person loves, another one really dislike. That’s actually the beauty about Eurovision. Many non fans will easily conclude that we fans are all the same, which we aren’t. This entry pretty much confirms that to me. People, who I find I have in lot in common with, love this one. I was almost afraid to tell them, that this is for me one of the worst entries this year. Her voice is way too stressed singing this one, I didn’t get the performance in the Australian final, and the song does absolutely nothing for me. Hopefully, she will have a better song for next year – one that fits her vocally better.’
‘Australian national final had many great songs but in my opinion the decision Australia made is not good. That’s not meant personally but I think that Casey Donovan or Vanessa Amorosi were much better with their live vocals than “cracky” Montaigne. Even though, the song is not that bad, only I think Montaigne is not a good live performed. Not one of my favourites this year and neither one of my favourite Australian entries. Sorry, Australia, maybe next time. And Montaigne – please bring better song and better vocals.’
‘Australia was one of the first countries to select their entry. My expectations can be too high to start with so I may have initially received the song with too critical an attitude. I really liked the choreography and overall presentation used for ‘Eurovision – Australia Decides’ save for Montaigne’s styling. I liked the clown concept but I think that, without compromising the artist’s vision, it would have been advantageous to soften it a bit for wider Eurovision appeal had Rotterdam 2020 gone ahead. I otherwise like the song, the chorus in particular. I expect it would have attained a decent placing.’
‘I think Australia had one of the best entries for 2020. Very atmospheric at the start and keeps the pace all the way through the song. A Eurovision masterpiece.’