Iceland has begun its preliminary competition for this year’s Eurovision contest, scheduled to take place in Tel Aviv, Israel in May. One of this year’s entries, Hatrið mun sigra (Hatred will prevail), a song by performance art-pop band Hatari (Hater) has already caused minor controversy, Vísir reports. Other contestants have reportedly complained about the bands performance, pointing out that it might not be in compliance with preliminary regulations.
Hatari have already secured a spot in Iceland’s Eurovision preliminary finals, hoping to grace the stage at the big event in Tel Aviv in May. The performance, however, is heavy on fascist symbolism, with members dressed in BDSM attire, screaming lyrics about the impending doom of Europe, the triumph of hatred and the void, which the band claims will eventually devour us all.
As some have pointed out, Hatari’s shenanigans might be in violation of regulation, most notably section 10.2 that states that entries should not cause emotional distress to viewers or other contestants, and should not bring dishonour to the preliminaries, The Icelandic National Broadcasting Service or the Eurovision Song Contest.
The rules also state that political lyrics, speeches and gestures on stage are not allowed in the preliminaries or in the Eurovision Song Contest. What this means for Hatari, a band that is known for its theatrics and fantasy role playing, remains to be seen.
Skarphéðinn Guðmundsson, RÚV’s director of programming, says that he has received complaints concerning Hatari’s performance, and reiterates that the Iceland’s Eurovision preliminaries should never be a “political platform, even though current and former contestants have in various ways, directly or indirectly, tried to impart a message that could be construed as political. When that happens contestants have been reminded of our regulation,” Skarphéðinn says, adding that “all of this year’s performers and songwriters have promised to follow the rules.”