This week the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — is looking north! That’s because we are busy reviewing the 10 songs that will compete in the final of Melodi Grand Prix 2016, Norway’s selection for Eurovision. Today we listen to Norway’s Got Talent winner Stine Hole Ulla. Did her song leave any traces in our mind? Here is what we think.
Stine Hole Ulla – “Traces”
William: I feel like this belongs on a Christmas album — and definitely not at Eurovision. It’s a bit too operatic for my liking and at times I feel like she’s shrieking rather than singing. I’m sure this could do great at a choral event or an audition for Phantom of the Opera. But as for radio-friendly Eurovision, this needs to go.
Chris: This is ripped from some awful musical, right? Hopefully, Norway will recognise that this is an inferior version of Nora Foss Al-Jabri’s “Somewhere Beautiful” from MGP 2012. That didn’t win and there’s no chance that “Traces” will do any better. Stine’s voice is pretty cutting and it’s actually painful to have to get through this song. Just…no.
Robyn: This is so Disney it hurts. It’s so Disney that I can easily imagine a cartoon Nordic princess singing it, rather than the real girl Stine. I actually think a song like this could do quite well at Eurovision, especially in western countries where more kids are watching. Personally, it’s not to my taste, but I appreciate the craft that has gone in it.
Antranig: An incredible voice brought down by a dull song. Norway already sent Princess Elsa to Eurovision and Margaret Berger was dark, edgy and contemporary — everything “Traces” isn’t. I’m sure Stine will deliver amazing live vocals but she won’t be getting to Eurovision with a song like this. Come back next year with something much better.
Josh: Such musical. Many Disney. Wow. Stine Hole Ulla has a great voice and she’s very pretty, but this song is so sickly sweet that I’ve almost got diabetes. Keep this song on Broadway or the West End and away from the Melodi Grand Prix stage!
Steinunn: We’ve found Elsa and Anna’s lost sister that got cut from the final version of the Frozen soundtrack. I didn’t like Frozen and I don’t like this song. Stine is without a doubt a great singer, but the song is so outdated and the Disneyfication is way over the top for my liking.
Zakaria: This is like 20 spoonfuls of sugar in a small coffee. The whole song is a little too much and I feel annoyed after only one listen. No doubt Stine can sing but I feel she’s too old to sing a Disney-like song. I would rather see her sing a more mature ballad. Such a waste of talent.
Liam: This song should really be pitched to Disney because it would work perfectly in that situation. Same can’t be said for Eurovision. It’s pretty, but it’s doesn’t suit the sheer grandeur of Eurovision.
Sami: Stine has beautiful voice and it fits to the song perfectly. Yes, it is very Disney but it has very sweet lyrics and the strings sound amazing. Obviously it wouldn’t be the best choice from Norway to send to Eurovision, but it’s a good addition to Melodi Grand Prix.
Deban: Despite the stellar visual efforts of Even Evenson and Klaus Rødahl, “Traces” is still tedious. Stine Ulla is clearly a gifted vocalist. She reaches high notes with a golden voice that packs emotions and power. However, in order to outshine her peers, she still needs a good song.
In the Norwegian Wiwi Jury we have 25 jurors but only have room for 10 reviews. The remaining 15 scores are below!
William C: 2/10
The highest and lowest scores are dropped prior to calculating the average score. This is to remove outliers and reduce potential bias. We have removed a low of 0 and a high of 8.