Earlier this week the Wiwi Jury—our in-house panel of music unprofessionals—flew to Cyprus to withdraw all of our money from our offshore accounts and to review Despina Olympiou’s Eurovision 2013 song “An Me Thimase”. Did we la la love it? Or did it seem like a let down following Ivi Adamou’s floor stomper from 2012? Read our reviews to find out.
Bogdan: Despina is a sweet lady and her ballad is nice, but I am afraid that they will both drown in the sea of ballads this year. “An Me Thimasai” follows the classic ballad recipe to a fault – it is too classic and brings no spark and nothing extraordinary to the table. It is pretty, melodious, beautifully delivered, but so are most of the other ballads this year. Sorry to bring (more) bad news for Cyprus this year…
Deban: If MayaSar can make it to 6th position in her semi-final, then Despina Olympiou deserves to be in the top 5 of Eurovision 2013. She is a star with a string of hits and musical accolades both in her native Cyprus, and in her adopted country, Greece. She has a beautiful voice that isn’t reliant on production, and even though many viewers won’t speak her native Greek language, she sells it as a language they need to learn. Her stage presence is powerful without being overbearing. “An Me Thimase” is a beautiful ballad sung just right. No excessive Mariah Carey ad-libs, Celine Dion wailings or Patti La Belle aggression. Despina takes control and serenades you with her beauty, poise, and dulcet tones. Nothing is forced, everything flows. This is one song that could go on for another two minutes without you realising it’s passed the three minute cut-off mark. Although this song is unlikely to win the contest, (“La La Love” had a much stronger chance, but stalled mid-table), I like the fact that Cyprus keeps putting forward great songs in the contest year after year.
Vebooboo: I’m clearly trashy, because Ivi Adamou’s digitally remastered song from last year plays on loop when I’m at the gym. Cyprus is known to produce fun songs, so I was ruul ruul skeptical when this one came out. In a year flooded with ballad-singing divas, it’s hard to stick out. While this song is well sung and sweet, it will unfortunately blend in with the crowd in Malmö. A shame, since the lyrics are so touching (if you bother to read the English version). In another year, Cyprus would have been more the talk of the town, but this year the small nation has to compete against France, Russia, Ukraine, etc. Sorry, guys.
Mr Häggkvist: Cute song, but I do prefer Ivi Adamou. This is so serious and adult. It was a shame that Valanto Trifonos quit, because that’s the type of Greek pop that works for Eurovision. I can imagine this song on the Eurovision stage (a.k.a., it’s boring…). I just don’t think it will get many points.
HK Dick: In a complete contrast to the disco-tastic “La La Love”, Cyprus has gone all serious on us this year with An Me Thimase. Usually I prefer songs in English but this really sounds nice in Greek and it was a good choice to keep the original language. I expect Despina to be wearing a long frock and surrounded by many wind machines as she takes us through her emotional journey. Surely another place in the final beckons for Cyprus.
Alexander: Yes, Despina has a great voice. The song is also pleasant to listen to. However, it’s just way too boring for my taste. I can’t concentrate on it for more than a minute before my mind begins to wander. There is a build-up at the end with a key change, but even that is not enough to retain my attention (and no, I normally don’t have a short attention span). The only way I can see this qualifying is if the jury likes her voice.
Wiwi: I’ve fallen in love with Despina Olympiou twice. The first time was during our live chat on Eurovision.tv. She’s down-to-earth, more interested in making good music than boosting her status as a celebrity, and generally a very likeable woman. The second time was when I heard her song “An Me Thimase”. Yes, it’s not “La La Love” and it’s not going to provide the soundtrack to your aerobics class or encourage you to throw down on the dance floor. But, if you’re in the right mood and read the English translation, it will tug your heart strings and get you thinking about the one who got away. Let me serenade Despina with her own finely-crafted lyrics: “If you remember me/ Become a bright star/ As the night falls, for me to look at you in the sky”.
The Wiwi Jury Verdict: 6.5/10