Over the weekend the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of musical unprofessionals — headed to Transylvania to explore our gloomy fascination with Dracula. After packing up our crucifixes and garlic, we sat down to review Voltaj‘s Eurovision 2015 song “De la capat / All Over Again”. Did their song, which is devoted to the children left behind by Romanian migrant workers, touch our souls? Read on to find out…
Romania’s Eurovision 2015 song
Reviews: Voltaj with ‘De la capat / All Over Again’
Angus: ‘De la capat / All Over Again’ has a heartwarming message, promising vocal and unlike so many other bilingual efforts, neatly sidesteps becoming a car-crash. Unfortunately it completely blends into the pack this year. Voltaj don’t stop this year’s traffic, they get run-over by it.
Anthony: Having watched this year’s Selectia Nationala final, I was with the majority of Eurovision fans when Voltaj won — this wasn’t my first choice. They may not be up there with my favourite duet of Paula Seling and Ovi from last year, but their indie pop rock entry “De La Capat” has grown on me after a few listens. The melody from the standout chorus is lovely and packs in a lot of emotion. I wouldn’t be surprised if Romania maintains their 100% qualifying record.
Bogdan: When I first listened to “De la capat” back in November, I absolutely loved it, and the video was a big part of it. When I first listened to it again as a jury member of Selectia Nationala, I jotted down, “The song to beat.” This time, as a Wiwi Jury member, I am aware that the competition is much stronger, but I still hope that Voltaj will bring Romania back to the Top 10. Now it all depends on whether they are able to convey their stirring message onstage, because the lyrics do not explicitly carry it.
Padraig: Can we please send Voltaj back to 2003? This style of soft-rock was fine then, but times have moved on. The sound, the look – everything is past its sell-by. The only place this song is going to is Snoozeville. So what if it’s got a “message”? There are far worthier entries this year, the bulk of which don’t send to me to sleep.
Robyn: Performing in a language other than English is a risk, but it always seems to work the best when there’s a lot of emotion with the song. Voltaj have nailed it, but they will need staging that helps convey the message behind the song before the English section kicks in. If they can bring the emotional heft of the music video to the stage, they’ll be fine. And to Voltaj’s credit, while “De la capat” is a song with a message, it doesn’t feel like they’re trying to force it upon the audience.
William: Stirring, powerful and vocally on-point, this is a performance with a message and I’m loving it. I preferred the 100% Romanian version, but the fact that they’ve slotted in some English doesn’t really matter: his questionable pronunciation meant I still thought they were singing in Romanian for several seconds anyway. This song makes you feel something instantly and keeps my attention the entire time. I’ve got more hope in this than my fellow jurors.
Josh: When I heard the song for the first time I was literally so bored and was planning which country would finally get to replace Romania in the final. Then the English version came along and, as a native English speaker, the song finally clicked. The emotional message of the song was easily conveyed and I was happy to allow Romania back into the final. Then when Voltaj announced they will perform in Romanglish (yes, it’s a word now), I was stoked! I appreciate that some countries want to inject small amounts of their own language in a song, whilst maintaining the emotion for the average English speaker. Nice job, Romania!
Chris: A lovely song with a lovely message, but this is too lovely for its own good. I think the switch to English-Romanian is a smart one given the success the majority of bi-language songs had last year (Israel aside) and I am sure that it will qualify. Still, I just can’t enjoy it and even after listening to it multiple times, I can only really remember the end of the chorus and even then, I can only remember the basic tune. It’s nice enough when it’s on, but that’s about it.
Deban: There were better songs at 2015’s Selectia Nationala, but sadly, we are past that now. Romania may struggle to stand out this year with a song that loses steam as it approaches its chorus. As “All Over Again” starts to make a second climb, my interest wanes. In Romanian, the song is intriguing. In English, it makes you drift. However, the video is spectacular! Hopefully, the Romanian delegation will hire a staging magician in Vienna to help this entry lift off.
Denise: This song is starting to grow on me. At first, I absolutely hated it. The English is really bad and the song itself was really dull. After hearing the song more often and understanding the meaning of the song, it improved significantly. When they announced they aren’t going to sing the whole song in English, I was really happy. The Romanian language is making the song so powerfull and the video is outstanding. I hope they can bring the video on the stage.
Our first reaction (March 8)
Twenty-nine jurors review each song, but we only have space for ten written reviews. The remaining 19 scores are listed below.
William C: 7/10
The highest and lowest scores are dropped prior to calculating the average. We have removed a low of 3 and a high of 9.5.