With the Eurosong final on Friday, the Wiwi Jury – our in-house panel of music unprofessionals – decided to clamber aboard the first Ryanair flight to Dublin, and undertake a week long road trip round the Emerald Isle. Upon landing we got stuck into Andrew Mann’s “Be Mine”. What was our verdict? Read on to find out…
Anthony: I have tried my best to listen several times. But attempting to make out Andrew’s vocals from this rock influenced entry is already becoming a challenge in itself. I can only listen to him for the first 30 seconds before it all becomes overwhelming. If this somehow gets picked for Copenhagen, I imagine it will be decimated by the Eurovision juries. Sounds harsh. But for me, the truth simply ain’t pretty.
Katie: I don’t understand what this song is meant to be. Folk or rock? Either way, I don’t like it. The singer is irritating and the random drums do not help in any way. It’s like he’s attempting to sing a powerful ballad, but failed miserably and ended up sounding like a drunk person on a karaoke machine.
Angus: Another case of unnecessary production. The background is very rocky and Andrew sounds like he’s straining. Ryan Dolan strained last year and that landed the Emerald Isle dead last.
Zach: This song sounds like it would fit perfectly on an alternative soft rock album from 2006 or so, when that genre was somewhat popular. But in 2014, it just sounds really out of place. Vocals aren’t anything to write home about, kind of a “filler song”, I think. I’ll be shocked if they send it, and won’t be when they don’t qualify with it.
William C: This song is the rockiest of the lot, even though Aslan’s Billy McGuinness is Laura O’Neill‘s mentor. Andrew competed in Eurosong in 2012, and the Voice last year, so he has experience. Back in 2012 he was the least favourite (I think), and came 2nd, so he could pull a surprise. This song is alright, but not nearly good enough to represent Ireland in Copenhagen.
Sami: His voice is extremely annoying. It’s very high-pitched but at the same time very deep. The song is also quite irritating. It tries to be serious rock, but just sounds like a folk-group was given some electric guitars. On the other hand, it’s somewhat like “Lonely Planet” and that thing did too well in Eurovision last year.
Patrick: It’s a regular Irish-rock song with some folk-influences. I really like the sound of his voice and sometimes he reminds me of Nickelback (possibly his idols?). He sings the lines very well, yet he’s not the best singer. The lyrics are nothing new and not really special. The chorus is quite strong but you’ll forget it after a few minutes. Maybe the public will like this song but I’m not so sure about the jury. So in summary, the song is good with some strong vocals, but it’s unsuitable for Eurovision.
Deban: Very soft-rock in sound, like a Foreigner b-side. It’s dated, noisy and would undoubtedly tank in the contest. With Softengine’s advance to Eurovision, this entry is the weaker of the two. It’s not tragic, but I’d be surprised to discover it being anyone’s favourite.
Padraig: The song opens with the lyrics “look into the sun”. Please don’t. Such behaviour is dangerous and can cause blindness. Similarly, Ireland sending “Be Mine” to Copenhagen would also be reckless, albeit with different side effects, the most likely being mass boredom and nul points. The one plus is that there’s no need to break the news to Andrew, since he sings “there’s one thing you must understand, I’m not going to get very far”. Glad to see he’s a realist.
Wiwi Jury Verdict: 3.39/10
You can read all of our reviews and rankings for Eurosong 2014 by clicking here.
Do you think Andrew Mann should represent Ireland with “Be Mine”? If you do, make sure to vote for him in our poll before 26 February. And keep up with all the Irish news and interviews by clicking here.
Photos: Andrew Mann and RTE