She’s an Australian-Danish beauty representing Denmark at Eurovision 2017. So the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of musical unprofessionals — just have to kick off our review by saying hej and g’day to Anja Nissen, who is singing “Where I Am” at this year’s contest. After listening to her song did we head straight to where she is? Or did we want to flee to the other side of the world? Read on to find out…
Anja – “Where I Am”
Twenty-one-year-old Anja Nissen was born and raised in Australia to Danish migrant parents. In 2014, she won the third series of The Voice Australia, where she was coached by will.i.am. Anja competed in Dansk Melodi Grand — Denmark’s Eurovision selection show — in 2016 and placed second with “Never Alone” (despite being a huge fan favourite). She returned this year and won over Danish viewers with her R&B ballad “Where I Am”.
“Where I Am” reviews
Antranig: “Where I Am” doesn’t push any boundaries musically. But there’s a strength in Anja Nissen that few performers possess. She makes lemonade out of lemons and turns the ordinary into the extraordinary. Lyrically, “Where I Am” is one of the better ballads. The only drawback is that the song is significantly weaker than “Never Alone” and I can’t help but think what could have been.
William: Anja Nissen has poise, power and beauty. Unfortunately she doesn’t have a good song. “Where I Am” is three minutes of vocal masturbation that consists of two settings: loud and louder. Rather than reaching one climax, she seems to hit about fifty — and that’s exhausting for even the most seasoned lothario. This isn’t a song. It’s one extended high note.
Chris: “Where I Am” feels like it’s exactly what Denmark needs at Eurovision 2017. After the failures of 2015 and 2016, Anja brings a sense of safety to the stage. And that contributes to some of the problems of “Where I Am”. It’s a song that yearns for a winner’s reprise that it just won’t get at Eurovision. There’s about enough in the song to bring Denmark back to the final and Anja elevates it further, but this screams right hand side once it’s there.
Robyn: I don’t dislike “Where I Am”, but it’s not a favourite either. The song is a very ordinary romantic ballad, with plenty of opportunities for Anja to show off her big voice. That’s what it comes down to — if you like a shouty diva performance, you’ll probably like this song. If not, there’s less to like.
Deban: Anja brings her finest ingredient to the contest — her voice. “Where I Am” isn’t the best song. It could be stronger with a revamp and more visual resources. However, it is driven by one of the most powerful voices in showbiz today. Anja’s simplicity is endearing. She wrote the song and whenever she performs the track, she owns the stage.
Josh: As an Australian, I feel a complete sense of patriotism knowing we have two Aussies competing at Eurovision this year. Anja is one of those amazing talents that unfortunately fell short in the Australian music scene. Why not send your talents abroad, especially to a country you share a deep connection with? The thing that’s so loveable about Anja is that she delivers a powerful vocal, but is still so sweet and humble. You go, girl. Australia is watching you.
Padraig: It says a lot that my favourite part of “Where I Am” is the cheesy chanting at the start. Because while cheesy, the opening sets the song apart from its contemporaries. But Anja’s stellar vocal is without doubt the entry’s strongest asset. Powerful and brimming with soul and emotion, her voice takes the track to heights it doesn’t deserve to reach. Crucially, she and the production team deliver small flourishes of modernity which set it apart from most of the other female ballads this year.
Steinunn: It’s no wonder Anja won The Voice Australia — she is an amazing singer. The song, however, is just another one of those diva power ballads that you’ve heard so many times before. It sounds kind of repetitive and predictable — nothing new or exciting happens. But at the same time the familiarity of it makes you want to listen again. Sung by an average singer this song would fall flat, but Anja keeps this song going and her vocals are going to get Denmark way further than the actual quality of the song.
In our Wiwi Jury, we have 38 jurors but only room for eight reviews. The rest of our scores can be found below:
Before calculating the average score, the highest and lowest scores are dropped. This is to remove outliers and reduce potential bias. We have removed a low of 2 and a high of 10.
Wiwi Jury verdict: 6.61/10
What do you think of this song? Share your own score and review below!