Yesterday the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of musical unprofessionals — paid a visit to San Marino’s Piazza della Liberta and found a ristorante where we could admire the hillside views. After enjoying some pasta e ceci, we reviewed San Marino’s Eurovision 2015 duo Michele Perniola & Anita Simoncini and their song “Chain of Lights”. Did they illuminate our lives? Or were we looking for the off switch? Read on to find out…

San Marino’s Eurovision 2015 song

Reviews: Michele and Anita with “Chain of Lights”

Robyn: “Chain of Lights” starts out sounding quite dramatic and cool, with moody Michele and sweet Anita drawing the listener into their world of light. But then at the two-minute mark the song suddenly turns into a life insurance television commercial from the 1980s. Then there’s the semi-rapped bit. It’s a mess and ends up being really unenjoyable. I would rather listen to that 10-minute loop of Michele saying “no”.

Score: 4/10

Michele Anita San Marino postcardAngus: Anita and Michele are fabulous singers lumbered with a real clanger in “Chain of Lights”. The song cannot decide what it wants to be – equal parts Disney duet, early ’00s pop and ’80s disco. No shade, but Anita is not a rapper and Michele cannot pull of male pop-star heartthrob convincingly. Had Ralph sensibly stayed in Disneyland, we’d have something better for all concerned.

Score: 5.5/10

Deban: Ralph Siegel —Eurovision royalty and music legend — is the maestro behind this. But sadly I’m not feeling it. If you’re going to draw inspiration from your own catalogue, then please choose a winning entry. “Chain Of Hearts” bears a strong resemblance to “If We All Give A Little”, and carries a similarly dated concept. This song would never have advanced from a national selection. No music expert would award it a decent score. Microstate advocates are struggling to reconcile all this. I can only hope that in his infinite wisdom Siegel has found a qualifier in this. For now I can’t see it.

Score: 3/10

Anthony: San Marino at Eurovision without Valentina Monetta feels like Christmas without Santa. This is now Ralph Siegel’s fourth straight Eurovision entry for the land-locked nation. Sadly “Chain of Lights” is a step backwards. The mysterious melody is tolerable, but the cringe-worthy lyrics, especially about lighting up candles, really drag the whole song down. Given the inevitable task ahead of them, it’s a big ask for Anita and Michele to make it two in a row in Vienna.

Score: 4/10

Chris: I mean, please. When Michele and Anita were announced as the Sammarinese entry, I had a very small shred of hope that they might actually enter something age-appropriate for two 16-year-olds. Of course, once Ralph Siegel got involved, any such hope went right out of the window and, unsurprisingly, we have a mess of a song that ultimately ends up sounding like Six4One, which was dated back in 2006. It’s a shame, because these two performers deserved much better.

Score: 2.5/10

William: The strings set a mysterious tone and when Anita enters I’m loving the contrast in their voices. But by the one-minute mark it’s clear this song was written for with a 40-year-old chainsmoker in mind rather than two fresh young things. Anita should never have to face the indignity of rapping again. I think I will light a candle for them. It’s the only way to give this song some spark.

Score: 2/10

Bogdan: Here they are, the youngest singers this year, with the most dated song. What a pity! At the very least, they could have performed the song in Italian and saved Michele from the embarrassment of singing “let us build a chain of farts”. (Yes. I can’t unhear it.) San Marino showed such promise when they announced the fresh and adorable duo, but wow, what a missed opportunity!

Score: 1/10

Padraig: Anita and Michele had the chance to become the Troy and Gabriella of Eurovision. Instead we get this. “Chain of Light” doesn’t work at all. Everything feels clunky, nothing flows. The sound is unforgivably dated, Siegel can modernise (relatively speaking) when he wants to – “Crisalide”, “Just Get Outta My Life”. Both their JESC efforts were better… yes, even “Breaking My Heart”. They need to break free from these wretched chains, only then can they truly illuminate the night.

Score: 2/10

Wiwibloggs meets Michele Perinola and family at Junior Eurovision 2014

Max:  Two alumni of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest who have basically been kidnapped by Ralph Siegel and forced to sing this poor excuse of an entry, straight from the back catalogues of 1982. They are both so young and deserve something fresh, current and appealing to the market of today, but no, we have something that will be shot down in the semi-final and forgotten forever.

Score: 2/10

Michele-Perniola-Anita-Simoncini-Eurovision-2015Francheska: To use a popular expression from the 1980s: gag me with a spoon! This song is terribly dated, unoriginal, sappy, and lacks any sense of direction or purpose. It’s a meandering child in a lackluster candy store. It’s a hard-core gamer in a Radioshack. They could have sent something fun, but clearly some old fart thought otherwise. Please spare me!

Score: 1/10

 

Wiwibloggs chats with legendary songwriter Ralph Siegel

Our jury consists of 29 people, but we only have room for 11 written reviews. Here are the remaining 18 scores. 

Denise: 3/10

Josh: 2/10

Judit: 7/10

Kristin: 4/10

Liam: 3/10

Luis: 5/10

Marek: 8/10

Mario: 4/10

Mike: 8/10

Mikhail: 3/10

Patrick: 2/10

Ramadan: 2/10

Renske: 6/10

Rezo: 2/10

Sami: 7/10

Sinan: 5.5/10

Sopon: 2/10

William C: 1.5/10

Zach: 4.5/10

To reduce potential bias, we drop the highest and lowest scores prior to calculating the average. We removed a low of 1 and a high of 8.

WIWI JURY AVERAGE: 3.61/10

SEE OUR CURRENT EUROVISION 2015 REVIEWS AND RANKINGS

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TeleRoger
Guest
TeleRoger

Wow
It’s got the key change!
It’s got the strings
I can see the LED lights or glow sticks all around the arena !!!
Yes it’s a little cheesy but I hope it does well

Christian Kaad
Guest

Wow
Dated no!
They are young yes but happy they KNOW this is ESC and NOT junior Eurovision
They are well aware of it
Serving us a ballad that is not Disney syrup and with a profound message.
They are both likeable and I am impressed

Alex
Guest
Alex

The synthesized drum at the start epitomizes the song for me, unfortunately… Honestly, Ralph Siegel didn’t do too bad of a job with the composition. Let’s not forget that this is the same guy who’s responsible for the incredible Crisalide in 2013. However, he needs to use more modern-sounding percussive instruments! Same problem as Serbia’s entry, even though the songs are quite different. I’m not really a fan of the lyrics either. I think it is time for change in San Marino with regard to the songwriting team. Unfortunately I get the sense that Siegel helps out with a lot… Read more »

Lawrence Gibb
Guest
Lawrence Gibb

I actually like this song and hope they do OK. I am a little concerned that you chose to post only highly negative reviews when clearly one or two of your voters gave 6, 7 & 8. I can’t help thinking, were it written by a Swede and performed by a Ukranian, people would be far more positive. May I remind you of the 2013 Disney special “Gravity”. There is a bit of an anti-Siegel thing going on. Love San Marino and have loved all of their entries.

beccaboo1212
Guest

To me, San Marino’s chances of reaching the final a second time is 90%. 🙂
9/10

LAWL
Guest
LAWL

tefuk san marino will fail

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

@Graph – For what is it worth, this is still better than Iceland’s entry!

Eugene ESC UK
Guest

The choice of singers was good, two teenagers with relevant experience, then they give them this really dated ESC old school unexciting effort, they needed something modern and fresh. Ralph Siegel gets his fourth chance after failing to qualify twice and coming 24th last year. What on earth is San Marino thinking? Poor old Ralph does not have his finger on the pulse anymore, the contest has moved on and Ralph does not get it. A peace song sung by a 16 year old might have worked for Ralph and Germany in 1982, but not in 2015. The lyrics are… Read more »

Lanti
Guest
Lanti

Lighting up a candle + building a chain of farts= big gas explosion…

Deniz@TurkNL
Guest

5,5/10

I like the idea of bringing them back, but rather with another song. This is very old-fashioned and this will even make my mom sleep on the couch. I wish they would go for an ethno-popsong with Italian language. There is no way this can qualify.

PP
Guest
PP

San Marino have small chance to go to final, only if many teenagers vote for them and if juries vote for them because they are so young duet.

Mario
Guest
Mario

The *Facebook Song* was really cute & it had its own beauty <3
It was an amusing song 🙂
Valentina Monetta really shined like a diamond especially on that song of hers <3 🙂
I really enjoyed it <3 🙂

wozzeck
Guest
wozzeck

When San Marino wants to do something modern and now, they present “The Social Network Song”. I don’t know what’s worse or why they even keep trying.

Mario
Guest
Mario

Oh..! By the way it really sounds to me that Michele Perniola really sings the lyrics ”a chain of [email protected]”!! LOOL! 😛
At first i thought that it was just a misunderstanding but after i have heard this part too many times im very positive that he really sings the word ‘[email protected]’ indeed instead of ‘hearts’! 🙂

Francisco
Guest
Francisco

I agree with previous commentators, a very dramatic entrance which soon descends into cheesy chaos, which is a pity because this duo ooze talent through their skin pores and they could have glowed with a decent song, sadly, this song is everything but decent.

Mario ~ My Vision Of Gay Love ~ Lets Illuminate The Night...Its A Chain Of Gay Love 4 You..
Guest
Mario ~ My Vision Of Gay Love ~ Lets Illuminate The Night...Its A Chain Of Gay Love 4 You..

I really like San Marino’s song.. <3 🙂
Ralph Siegel is an illuminating master on making beautiful songs.. <3 🙂
Really beautiful lyrics.. <3 🙂
Its a qualifier song 4 me 🙂
My 7th most liked song in the 2nd SF & in my top20 overall <3 🙂
6/10
Hopefully San Marino will manage to get the qualifying ticket 4 the big final.. <3 🙂
But i really do not think so that we will gonna see San Marino among the 10 qualifiers unfortunately..

Daniel
Guest
Daniel

San Marino = 6/10.

Jerome
Guest
Jerome

1.5/10 San Marino has built a chain of doing progressively well, improving from their previous effort to the point where they qualified last year. “Chain Of Lights” is about to smash that chain into oblivion! This song does absolutely nothing for me. It sounds so outdated and fictionalised. It seems that they’re trying to mesh two types of songs together that do not work. As a result, the message they are trying to send just does not transmit. The last two years, going into the contest, I wanted San Marino to qualify. This year, I do not want to see… Read more »

Bronson
Guest
Bronson

The two as a duo actually have a lot of potential. Throw Ralph Siegel in (doesn’t matter whether he’s composing for a newbie or for Beyonce, it’s going to be awful) and it’s a total car crash.

I hate to sound so pessimistic but it sounds like a scrapped demo by an upcoming amateur artist. It’s not really that good.

Antranig Shokayan
Editor

I had high hopes for San Marino when they announced their singers, but the song is a flop…

Graph
Guest
Graph

10/10 This is actually my favorite song of 2015. The song has a sweet, melodious sound and also a very inspiring quality. I don’t understand why everyone thinks it is so old-fashioned. I feel like, if you listen to this song alongside an ’80s or ’90s Eurovision song, it’s obvious which song was actually written back then. For me, the best aspect of Chain of Lights is the way it moderates Ralph Siegel’s style to fit the singers. It would be a bit odd for teenagers to sing Crisalide or Maybe, but Chain of Lights incorporates some classic Siegel traits… Read more »

G
Guest
G

It’s a shame because I really enjoy their voices, specially Michele’s, they’ve got so much potential and it’s a tragedy that it’s wasted in a song as bland and cheesy as this :/ I really do hope they stay together and come back next year or sometime in the future to Eurovision with a much better song, this one is just below them, but they’re talented and decent performers so I’d be very happy to see them try again 🙂 For now, Chain of Lights gets a 3 for me, 1 for the effort and 2 for the potential in… Read more »

Z24
Guest
Z24

It’s sad because I really believed they could bring something great to the table. A great fusion of Jazzy Michele and poppy Anita. But instead we have this. Parts I like, parts I detest. Great beggining, horrible bridge, oddly interesting fast part, Michele’s “hearts”. But I feel guilty and still want to like them, they deserve better for a next ocassion.

3/10

Tha
Guest
Tha

Both, Michele and Anita, are great singers, and I feel bad about they. Such great voices with such a bad and dated song…

jimm
Guest
jimm

crap 1/10 rest in peace san marino

Allen
Guest
Allen

Second semi final is the one where everything can happen I think. For that reason San Marino maybe, but only maybe, has some chances.

The first semi-final is way stronger and if San Marino was there I think it wouldn’t have any chances.

Nobody expected Valentina last year to qualify, but she did and for me that was the highlight of the last year’s contest, beside everything else.

So, everything is possible, but honestly I don’t feel this song at all.

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

It sounds like four songs on one and that is not a good thing. It never decides what it wants to be. Nothing really goes together. Anita does not have a particularly strong voice and she is asked to do far too much in this song. Hopefully, they will come back in a few years when their voices have matured somewhat and with a better song because they will not be staying long in Vienna this year.
3/10

Darren
Guest
Darren

Sorry San Marino, I just don’t like it. I know resources are probably low in the microstate but I never really got the hype surrounding it, even when Valentina was competing. 0/10

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Unfortunately, I think all of Valentina Monetta’s hard work (3 years) in trying to get San Marino to the final is going to go out the window this year. The video is way better than the song, though even the video is no match for the videos that some other artists (Elina and Stig, for one) put out there.

Peyton
Guest
Peyton

I’m in the minority of people who actually really like this song, I don’t know why, but I just do! The song is catchy for me, and even though the song is definitely too old for Anita and Michele, it works for me.
My score is 7/10 and it is ranked 17th overall for me

Easpag
Guest
Easpag

The first minute is absolutely wonderful, which makes the following two so much more disappointing. The promising start is abandoned at 60 seconds and turns into a mess of a song. I really enjoy the arrangement and their voices at the start, but then the dated beats enter, the melody stops working with their voices and instead clashes with them, and need I mention the pseudo-rap? Utterly disappointing.

3/10