The Wiwi Jury—our international panel of music unprofessionals—sharpened its claws and headed to Tirana this week to review Rona Nishliu’s Eurovision 2012 song “Suus.” That means “Personal” in Albanian. But what does it mean to the jury? Read on to find out.


Wiwi: She who shrieks does not win. But she who belts it out Rona Nishliu-style has a major chance of doing well. I was skeptical when I first heard this song and cracked more than a few jokes about dead cats (particularly in the final bars). I was thinking, “Get this woman a chai tea latte!” when I heard her belting out chaaiiiiiiiii over and over. After looking at the English translation of the lyrics, though, I now realize she’s saying “qaj” which means “cry.” It really drove home the point that “Suus” is a deeply emotional ballad in the style of 2007’s winning song “Molitva.” Given that the Albanians have a knack for re-mixing, cutting, and generally re-casting their Eurovision entries ahead of the contest, I have no doubt they will nip and tuck this song to perfection. And given the vocals on Rona—she serves it up like Mariah Carey, y’all!—I see this going down very well in Baku. I just hope she doesn’t shatter the ceiling of Baku’s Crystal Hall Arena!

Score: 8/10

Vebooboo: OK, she may look nothing like Chiara (she’s the size of the Maltese diva’s head), but girl can belt some powerful notes just like our favourite plus-size contestant. For anyone out there who thinks Eurovision is just for class-less songs sung by even more déclassé people, listen to this song.  I mean, at 1:45 I almost shat in my pants it was so amazing. Daaaaamn, girl needs to make the Final.

Score: 8/10

Meows Kitty: I think I want to go kill myself…. I don’t really know what the words are about but it is obviously very very depressing. She acts the pain out so well that it’s infectious, especially for the ears. Not saying that she’s a bad singer or anything: she’s got a great voice and holds the notes well. But all that wailing and screeching is just too much. This song would suit the opera or a theatre show a lot better—not Eurovision.

Score: 5/10

Deban: Absolute masterpiece! If you liked Russia’s 2009 homecoming entry “Mamo” by Anastasia Pridkhoko, you’d love this. ‘Suus’ grips you from the very first beat and releases you into the abyss on its last high note. Rona Nishliu is a native Albanian who sings with a lot of conviction. Even though this song has a Latin title, it’s entirely in Albanian. It’s also proof that songs don’t have to be sung in English to communicate a mood or emotion. Remember “Molitva”—the Serbian entry by Marija Serifovic that won in 2007?

However, the tricky factor deciding this song’s success is the staging. Live orchestras are no longer the norm in the contest because they often exceed the six persons on stage rule. Let’s just hope that the stage isn’t furnished with dancers in silly costumes. That would be a travesty! This song has the potential to literally move mountains, and I’m hoping that Rona will take creative control of how the song she wrote and produced is packaged and presented. All in all, this is by far my favourite entry so far, and I’m certain it’ll do well in Baku.

Score: 10/10

The Wiwi Jury Verdict: 7.75/10

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Sigh
Guest

All those who voted for her either has no taste in music or are deaf. That is not singing, that is shrieking. This is a shit song, and her high placement is due to political voting & bad taste. She should just stay in Kosovo and die.

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[…] Albania: Rona Nishliu with “Suus” (Personal) […]

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[…] Albania: Rona Nishliu with “Suus” […]

Erik
Guest

For all the ones that do not know real music, and originality, on your faces, my girl is third and even if she wasn’t, she did her job, represent, I am almost positive majority of you people who love to stereotype will think twice before you misjudge a little country with a huge ego and even bigger history. I love you RONA, the way you cry this song makes most of us feel the pain in our souls, it makes us SUUS-PERSONAL

flamur
Guest

bravooooooooooooo albaniaaaaaaaaaaaaaa ..
rona nishliu ,ti je me e mira!

pangatski
Guest

just unbearable, she shouts and cries in a neverending yell, best ballad in this ES: Spain

Christian
Guest

I like it but will it have any chance this year? I doubt.It grew on me ( the song!) but not sure it will survive

MikeT
Guest

Don’t get this one at all. Sure she has a great voice, but I don’t hear a hook, just notes
going up, down, sideways,like vocal training as Holomorph said.

Remi
Guest
Dearest Stephen, I completely disagree with what you’ve expressed……how can you say that this is a bad and horrible song? Fair enough, it might not be the waving-my-new-nail-varnish-kind-of tune, but it sure hits where it matters. It even proves (in addition to what Deban says) that songs don’t have to be in English language to be understood. Though I would not go as far as grading her a 10 out of 10, I however felt every ounce of emotion conveyed. Her vocal ability / performance to me was flawless, positively understated, very believable and certainly of a different league to… Read more »
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[…] this is just what’s needed. It ain’t my cup of tea, though — I prefer me some chaiiiiiii courtesy of Rona Nishliu and […]

Neil
Guest

On hearing this ballad several times, it never fails to make a big impression. goose pimples and all. Drama with a big D – on hearing it for the first time I had the feeling she was holding something back, and then wham, those high notes, followed by higher and higher. What a singer, what a performance!
One of the longest entries, apart from Sweden’s Loreen, let’s have more of it.
I much prefer the official preview video with its monochromic effect, but honestly, she would nail it no matter how they package her, you can’t hold back talent.

Nathan
Guest

Can someone explain to me how its possible for one to like this song after hating it a lot a few weeks ago? I think its been a while since I last heard it. And like Wiwi, the shrieking of chaiiiiiii makes me chuckle but now that I know its the word “cry’…. oh my gawd, the song is beautiful.

Meows Kitty! Do not killllllllll yourself (you’ll have to do it 9 times anyway)…. because the rest of us Wiwi Vebooboo and Deban will chaiii aiyayayaiaiaiaiaiaiaiyayaya

francisco
Guest

Nice song until we get to the “aaah-aaaaaah-aaaaaaaaa-ah-ah-ah-ahahahahaha”…WTF? it overstays its welcome big time! chop that bit, make it shorter, we only need a couple of “aaah-aaah”, I agree with the French-chanson comparison, so sad and melancholic, pity that the long “aaah-aaah” makes it almost farcical

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[…] Serbia’s Joksimovic (“Love Is Not a Thing”) drops to third position with 989 votes, and he’s followed closely by Cyprus’ Ivi Adamou (“La La Love”) and Greece’s Eleftheria Eleftheriou (“Aphrodisiac”). Both of these ladies competed on Greek X-Factor. And both of these ladies have 731 votes. This is getting creepy. Albania’s Rona Nishliu—who recently gave WiwiBloggs.Com a fantastic interview at Eurovision in Concert—is holding steady in sixth place with 597 votes. She also remains in second place with the Wiwi Jury. […]

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[…] Rona Nishliu wowed the Wiwi Jury with her vocal chords. Now she’s wowed us with her brain. This morning, during our interview […]

Zolan
Guest
Even in such a strong year as this, “Suus” remains on my wishlist for the win. Verses are reminscent of French chanson in utilising the musicality of spoken language under emotional influence. The chorus wails clear and strong in contrast. The backing music is an appropriate balance of fatalistic restraint undermined by harmonic angst. The official video has improved on the original composition, but one problem remains. The chorus can come across as a bit gimmicky, or a mere technical display, and I suspect this is what puts many people off. Ideally, it should be like an organic outburst of… Read more »
stephen
Guest

This song is bad with a capital letter B. Such a horrible song what the hell is going on this year

Christian
Guest

I agree Nirgal.Just wait and see what will happen with the song in Baku. Changes can still be made as we write.To me it is like Björk on a bad day and I need to see / hear it “live” or mimed to be convinced.
A little piece of advice is that she has to cut down a little bit on the co-participating people on stage

Shirley Green
Guest

It’s obvious to me now: Deban is weird

another Samantha (aka Nathan)
Guest
another Samantha (aka Nathan)

As I currently reside in norway and everything is god AWFUL expensive, I cannot afford the tissues to wipe away my tears. This song has moved me to tears! qaj!
Can I count on Wiwi, Vebooboo or Deban to go to Costco and buy some tissues (in bulk) for me and send it to me in Oslo? Ill need them whilst watching this on my tv this May

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[…] Read the Wiwi Jury’s review of Albania’s “Suus” Digg this post Recommend on Facebook Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Serbia at Eurovision: A Love Affair with the Wooden Flute […]

Holomorph
Guest

This is no song, it sounds rather like vocal training. She may have a god voice, but music has to do with feelings and not only show-off your vocal range.

Neil
Guest

Don’t know what she’s singing but the emotion is raw, genuine and will win a lot of votes. This lady can sing and even if she doesn’t win ESC we won’t have seen or heard the last of her.

a different Samantha
Guest

I think she’s brilliant…just not for everyone, like Vegemite. If you look at it as a piece of performance art, rather than just a song, it works. (For me, anyway.) The mood of the piece works with the lyrics, and I really appreciate her sticking with the original Albanian. But yes, I see how this song could be incredibly divisive…

samantha
Guest

I think the jury smoked crack before rating this. Awful song. AWFUL.

ct
Guest

What’s really depressing is her hair.

Julian
Guest

Me too 10 for Sucks from Albania, whooo Love it !

Nirgal
Guest

I’m still not convinced… but I guess if we consider that Albania usually changes the style of the song for the contest, I’ll give it another chance.

Richard
Guest

There’s no doubt the girl can belt a note but somehow it’s just not that pleasing on the ears (I never could stand Mariah Carey either).

I actually think the music is lovely, a bit less of Rona and more of the sweeping violins of the orchestra and this could make a delightful Disney ballad. 6/10

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[…] Albania: Rona Nishliu with “Suus” (Personal) 2. Switzerland: Sinplus with […]