Pushing Buttons at Eurovision

As America settles into another season of Ryan Secrest and Simon Cowell catfights (aka American Idol), Europe gears up for its annual continent-wide song competition, Eurovision. Each country votes on a song to represent them at the Eurovision finals, then viewers across Europe vote on a winner from that pool of entries. This year’s entries have their work cut out for them — it’ll be hard to top last year’s winners, Finnish heavy-metal rockers Lordi.

This year, there’s controversy brewing around Israel’s chosen Eurovision entry: a song called “Push the Button” by the band Teapacks. Eurovision organizers have threatened to ban the entry due to its “inappropriate” political message. The song warns of the dangers of nuclear war and seems to be a thinly-veiled jab at the nuclear ambitions or Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. One verse goes: “There are some crazy leaders they hide and try to fool us / With demonic, technologic willingness to harm / They’re going to push the button.”

Musically, the catchy song jumps back and forth between folk, hard rock, and even hip-hop, with the lead singer singing in English, French, and Hebrew. In the video, there’s even a (somewhat lazy) accordion player smoking a pipe:

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