Last week, Irish songstress Molly Sterling released the final version of her song, “Playing With Numbers” and it came with some noticeable changes. While the new version is based on the original recording, the drama has been turned up with a bold orchestral accompaniment that helps to emphasise the emotion in the lyrics.

The song starts off the same as the original version, with Molly’s voice coming in along with a piano, continuing like the original for the first verse. It’s not until the first chorus comes along that Ireland’s new tactic is revealed when the emotion of the lyrics is highlighted with dramatic drum flourishes and cymbal crashes.

The orchestral accompaniment builds, with strings and percussion adding to the heartbreak of the lyrics. It gives the song a strong climax and makes “Playing with Numbers” a lot more memorable than the previous gentler version.

Listen to the new version of “Playing With Numbers”

“Playing with Numbers” – Wiwi Jury review

What do you think? Will Molly now be a sure qualifier with the changes made? Or is the song doomed regardless? Comment below with your opinion.

Follow all of our Ireland Eurovision news here. Read our interview with Molly Sterling here.

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Adams
Adams
5 years ago

I prefer the first version – nice, simple and emotional.

Leaf
Leaf
5 years ago

Honestly, I always loved the song and I still love it …….

I believe it is just as good as the original version and I would be thrilled if Ireland makes it to the final !!!!

Huh
Huh
5 years ago

Still decent. But I can only think that it can probably end up as a dark horse entry.

Álex, from Spain
Álex, from Spain
5 years ago

Very sublte changes that suddenly make the song strangely beautiful.

Deven O'Kearney
Deven O'Kearney
5 years ago

I agree with William C., it’s a lot more memorable and the cymbals and drum flourishes. That adds to the drama of the song and the passionate lyrical content.

But the staging in Vienna is going to have to be mind blowing if it is going to set the scoreboard ablaze in the final. I have a lot of faith that RTE can actually produce a really strong stage package.

ESCaddict
ESCaddict
5 years ago

Love it. Ireland deserves to go through to the final.

Max
Max
5 years ago

One song in the contest which i know every words. For me,in the last part of the song ‘give a little love was all i wanted’ shouldn’t have changed. I love the calmness in this song but some changes doesnt feel so bad

Chris
Chris
5 years ago

Alhough I can understand why Ireland have changed the version, I personally regard that as a bad move. I prefer the calmer version. This one seems to be more powerful, but not in a good sense. In any case, Molly sounds so mature! She reminds me of Aimee Mann. It has been the best Irish entry since 2003 or even 1997. Good luck, I will be crossing my fingers!

Alex
Alex
5 years ago

Yeah, the dramatic percussive flourishes are unnecessary, and the strings don’t do anything for me. I greatly prefer the original. That being said, it’s still one of the best songs this year, and quite frankly, the biggest problem in this studio version is just simply that her vocals are mixed to be too quiet in the parts where there’s added stuff… it’s like they forgot to normalize. Such a problem is generally fixed automatically by the mixers when the song is heard live, so nothing really to worry about here.

Ron
Ron
5 years ago

@Esceire the revamping of Playing With Numbers is relatively minor. In fact, for the first 2 mins 18 secs the song sounds virtually identical to the NF version, so talk of the song being ruined by some people here is ridiculous. I think they’ve done a really good job of revamping it. The original version sounded a little ‘samey’ to the rest of the song towards the finish whereas you’re aware the song is building to a proper climax with the new version.

Alison
Alison
5 years ago

I think the changes will improve it as a live performance in the arena but the cymbal crashes sound a bit strange in this audio, doesn’t blend well. I like the song so hope it qualifies.

Esceire
Esceire
5 years ago

@Darren I agree as a fellow Irish man, i just think most eurovision fans are to fond of change except when its Ukraine because the ukrainian entries are absolutely dreadful in there original form, I don’t see what the problem is? everyone was complaining that the climax wasn’t power enough and that the chorus should be lifted and once we sort out those issues people say thats a problem??? i just don’t understand to be honest

olga
olga
5 years ago

Like Portugal, Serbia, Malta and FYROM… I prefer the original version … In all of these cases, the first versions sounded more genuine and honest

Darren
Darren
5 years ago

I loved the song before the revamp and now I absolutely love it even more! Yes, I’m Irish but I know for a fact that I am not being biased because I usually end up hating what my country sends to Eurovision. I dont know why everyone is complaining though,maybe because it is Ireland…if this was..say..Azerbaijan or Sweden that entered it, it would be top 10, Azerbaijan by the way entered a similar but incredibly boring song last year by the way and it didn’t receive as much hate as Ireland is getting. I hope Molly qualifies with this spectacular… Read more »

Mar
Mar
5 years ago

@Esceire The climax sounds awkward to me now, because the original recording is the same and they just added some cymbals in the backround to try to make it more powerful, but they don’t accompany the melody.
Before, I didn’t like it because it wasn’t muy cup of tea, now I can actually say it sounds bad.

Daniel
Daniel
5 years ago

, at least we British know ‘Still in love with you’ is atrocious but at least ours is one of the only upbeat ones.

Anaconda
Anaconda
5 years ago

If you hadn’t pointed out the changes, I wouldn’t have noticed them. Once you did, yeah, I guess it sounds a bit better. It’s not a bad song to begin with, but, even with the revamping, it will never be more than upper-average for me.

Esceire
Esceire
5 years ago

@Mar Its virtually the same song with a stronger climax ( which is what everyone was complaining about) how is it worse?

Mar
Mar
5 years ago

With all that unnecesary dramatism slapped into a song that was written to be melow, it’s even worse than before.

Which reworking of the song is more amateurish, Ireland or Portugal? I can’t decide.

Ron
Ron
5 years ago

@ Eugene, yes this is the official Eurovision version and the one that will be performed in Vienna. The original NF version was never even released on iTunes, they waited until the new one was ready.

As revamps go, it’s an excellent one. They’ve kept the first two minutes almost identical to the NF version, very simple and acoustic and have beefed it up just a little from the middle eight section onwards (as Phil Coulter suggested during Eurosong).

Sebastian
Sebastian
5 years ago

@JohnathanUK it is much better than the atrocity that is “Still In Love With You”

Esceire
Esceire
5 years ago

Is it just me or is it when any song is ever changed the ESC fan community say its bad?

Esceire
Esceire
5 years ago

@Jonathan, if you haven’t noticed the changes than you obviously haven’t watched it yet.

JonathanUK
JonathanUK
5 years ago

I can’t really see where the change is? It is rather boring and too slow. It will be lucky to qualify! It’s so mediocre it will be an extremely lucky finalist if it reaches the final and it will be borderline. 5/10.

Miko
Miko
5 years ago

Better than a lot of other songs and should comfortably sail into the final.

9/10

bastian
bastian
5 years ago

boring and i dont like her voice

Sebastian
Sebastian
5 years ago

I like this change, it adds the needed push at the end and has moved it from 5th to third.
1. Slovenia
2. Albania
3. Ireland
4. Sweden
5. Belgium

Steven
Steven
5 years ago

Ok I’m from Ireland so I’m probably going to be a bit biased. I really like the added cymbals! Most of them really fit the song, one or two could’ve been chucked out but overall I really like them. I think they give the song an added depth. It gives it more of a build up than before! It’s a slight but bold addition to the song and I honestly think it’s working. I also love the standing out of piano keys towards the end. I think the slight changes have added a lot more emotion also. Hope we qualify,… Read more »

Eugene ESC UK
Eugene ESC UK
5 years ago

Molly’s acoustic version, nice to see her not hiding behind a piano for a change :-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ru3GX98Oqa8

jr esc nl
jr esc nl
5 years ago

Daniel, same favorites but i also have albania and germany

Daniel
Daniel
5 years ago

I love Ireland so much this year and now I love it even more. For me it is a toss between Latvia and Ireland which means I don’t know who to vote for. Hmmmm.

Pedro
Pedro
5 years ago

I used to dislike this song… But I have loved the new version!

EF0912
EF0912
5 years ago

Not bad…

jr esc nl
jr esc nl
5 years ago

… this was so unneeded

Easpag
Easpag
5 years ago

I like it just as much as the other version, no better nor worse. Might make it a little bit more memorable though.

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
5 years ago

This is the version that’s on the official Eurovision 2015 album, so I think it’s safe to assume it’s the final Irish version.

Otna
Otna
5 years ago

I prefer the original also. It doesn’t ruin it for me at all, but the original was better…

Maltish
Maltish
5 years ago

@Nicky1991: Team Amber high five

mawnck
mawnck
5 years ago

The last time I came on here and confidently declared that an “update” was too amateurish and ill-conceived to be real, it was Portugal. And it turned out to be real. And I felt silly.

So this time I’ll just say … Jeez, Ireland. You’ve done it AGAIN.

Nicky1991
Nicky1991
5 years ago

@Eugene, yes me too and i’m a fan of strictly come dancing, but this is eurovision. and this version doesn’t catch me at all.

with love from #TeamAmber

Nicky1991
Nicky1991
5 years ago

Ruined the song. what a shame of a beautiful song.

I’m really backing Malta on this contest

#TeamAmber

Maltish
Maltish
5 years ago

Ruined it for me.

Leo
Leo
5 years ago

I prefer the original version, don’t like those cymbal crashes at all. I think the submission deadline was around a month ago and surely if this version was going to Vienna, it would have been released before now.

Eugene ESC UK
Eugene ESC UK
5 years ago

You say this is the “final” version, but is this the final version submitted to the EBU? That question needs to be answered in the first place otherwise it is irrelevant anyway. It could be just another promotional version?

It’s not a major difference really, but it now it sounds even more like a grand old fashioned Waltz, (perhaps a Viennese Waltz?) Is that a good thing? I can see them dancing to this on “Strictly Come Dancing” though.

Just Mario xoxo~ My Vision of Gay Love ~You Better Play Your Card Numbers Well In This Messed Up Life..
Just Mario xoxo~ My Vision of Gay Love ~You Better Play Your Card Numbers Well In This Messed Up Life..
5 years ago

What can i say really about the tones of fake non ral votes that the entry of Ireland has gathered…What a shame really 4 the wiwi poll to get rigged… It is not bad at all song but it doesn’t move me…It is just an OK song and nothing really good.. I have the irish entry not even close to my top10 on the 2nd semifinal… I really doubt if Molly can get the ticket 4 the final.. I prefered Erika Seline or Nikki to win the Irish Eurosong & represent Ireland to Vision as they had much better songs… Read more »

The Blogging DJ
5 years ago

Really like this version, hope Ireland can at least get to the final this year 🙂