Earlier today the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — travelled to the bustling city of Amsterdam and stopped by the Fool Bar to relax. While we were there, we discussed The Netherlands, Douwe Bob and his song “Slow Down”. Were we feeling his chilled-out vibe? Or did he leave us wanting something more exciting? Read on to find out!
Douwe Bob – “Slow Down”
“Slow Down” reviews
Angus: Planting the Netherlands firmly in Nashville, Douwe Bob’s song is as adorable as he is. “Slow Down” bounces along and offers an oasis amidst the sand-storm of big ballads, big bangers and pure Europop flooding this year’s contest. That kind of minimalist contrast did wonders for the Common Linnets in 2014 and Douwe Bob has placed himself in the same space.
Bernardo: Four points should mean I don’t have strong positive feelings towards this entry. Is it true? Not even close. “Slow Down” and Douwe Bob present us a solid composition with a compelling voice — channeling some Common Linnets vibes that can very well work for Douwe on the Eurovision stage. The sweet performance is going to conquer young ladies’ votes, but watch out, Douwe. You have Frans as your direct competitor and we already know the effect he had in Sweden. In my honest opinion I don’t think The Netherlands can again pull off something like the Common Linnets did a few years ago. Nevertheless, a solid entry and with the right performance it can surprise.
Bogdan: Despite going for the broad music genre that propelled the Common Linnets almost to the top of the scoreboard two years ago, “Slow Down” is as flat as the Netherlands itself and I would be very surprised if it replicates the same success. Yes, the singer is undeniably charming and a bloody good singer, but the song is just inoffensively cute. I’m not sure it’s enough to warrant a left-side finish on the scoreboard.
Deban: “Slow Down” has found its niche amongst busier entries – offering a contemporary take on country music. Douwe Bob is brimming with charisma and confidence in equal measure. He embraces you with his infectious sing-along tune, whilst nabbing the poster-boy title for his laid-back approach to Eurovision.
Edd: Call me crazy, but this sounds like the winner to me. It’s very evident that Douwe Bob is a true artist, and “Slow Down” is timeless. Not at all the kind of song you’d expect to see at Eurovision – in fact, it’s not even the kind of song you’d expect to be released as a single. Instead of trying to be explosive an super emotional, he’s giving a relaxed, melancholic vibe. And what a luxury it is.
Josh: “Slow Down” is exactly what this song makes me do. Unfortunately, I’m not a fan of country music and Douwe Bob could not convince me otherwise. I fear for the Netherlands’ ability to qualify for the final, but I may still vote for them because I think Douwe is cute and he has nice biceps.
Kristin: Now this is something I can get behind. Douwe Bob’s voice is so soothing and beautiful, and although many hear country when they listen to “Slow Down”, I hear more of a Beatles sound. Or maybe more like George Harrison when he went solo with a hint of Tom Petty. Will it advance to the finals? Probably. Will it reach a respectable placing? God, I hope so! This song is vastly different from all the other entries, and in the sea of the slow R&B/dancetrack numbers, it will stand out, and do so proudly. A thumbs up from Iceland to Netherlands.
Mike: As Dutchie I am really proud that we finally take Eurovision serious and we really try. But as much as we keep trying, I have no idea if Douwe Bob will qualify in Stockholm. He could finish first in his semi like the Common Linnets two years ago but with wrong staging the song could also be easily forgotten and we end up again with Les Pays-Bas nil points. But at least we’re sending a really charismatic and funny guy to Sweden who is gonna make a lot of fun and show that the Netherlands is doing its best to catch up with Europe.
Padraig: No one does country quite like the Dutch – at least when it comes to Eurovision. Just like the Common Linnets in 2014, Douwe gives us a wonderfully accessible yet completely credible taste of the genre. “Slow Down” has slight hints of melancholy, but for the most part it’s an upbeat affair with an almost singalong quality. You could almost call it a sophisticated toe-tapper. Coupled with Douwe’s farmboy-next-door good looks, this could be a dark horse in Stockholm.
Robyn: Normally a European version of American 1970s FM radio soft rock would seem like a recipe for disaster, but this is Douwe Bob therefore it works. He has ridiculous charisma to the point where I’d literally be happy to watch him tuning his guitar for three minutes. This song is an utter delight, and it just seems like it’ll be a ray of sunshine amongst all the very serious entries.
Tobias: Somehow I think of the movie Toy Story when I hear this song — maybe it’s his voice or the genre. I think this is an OK song but not something I would have on my Spotify list. It will be interesting to see what Europe will think about it since we don’t see much of this kind of music in Eurovision. Douwe Bob has good voice and I hope he will bring a good stage performance otherwise there might be a risk the crowd will get sleepy.
William: Europeans may find this novel, but as someone who grew up not far from Nashville I find it both derivative and dated. The chorus sounds like it could be the theme tune for a sitcom watched by elderly people. Douwe is a great vocalist and the song definitely improves live. But not even a master vocalist can give this flat-as-a-pancake track enough dynamism to pique — let alone keep — my interest.
In the Wiwi Jury we have 40 jurors but only have room for 12 reviews. The remaining 28 scores are below.
William C: 3/10
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 2 and a high of 9.5.