Yesterday the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — travelled to Slovenia. We paid a visit to the Postojna Cave, going deep underground. In a dark corner we gathered to discuss ManuElla‘s song “Blue and Red”. Did we enjoy the colours of her life? Or did it leave us feeling black and blue? Read on to find out!
ManuElla – “Blue and Red”
“Blue and Red” reviews
Chris: I really liked “Blue and Red” when I first heard it, but on repeat listens it’s falling further and further down my chart. ManuElla is a really good performer and I think the whole “Taylor Swift lookalike” motif will actually help her be remembered by viewers. The issue is that the song is unlikely to be taken too seriously by the juries; it also just feels like a step down for Slovenia after two years of great songs.
Angus: I love good country. Which is why it’s a shame this isn’t. ManuElla goes for the performance with suitable panache, but the song isn’t the best and a load of gimmicks can’t mask that.
Luis: Susanne Georgi, “La teva decisió”. I instantly connected ManuElla with Andorra’s last Eurovision entry, because I’m afraid they are going to suffer the same fate. While “Red and Blue” is really pleasant and likeable, and ManuElla is a very competent performer, Slovenia’s entry is just not enough to reach a Eurovision final. In the event they can find a decent performance (at the moment, the highlight of it is the backing vocalists ripping off her dress, so it’s easy to improve), it can be a borderline qualifier, but it’s highly unlikely.
Bogdan: The biggest problem of this song are the lyrics. Someone tried to make a metaphor using colours just to make it to “You feel blue and I am better” and the end result is pretty nonsensical. Otherwise, ManuElla (seriously?) is a competent singer, I love the way she sings the “Alive, alive, alive” lyric, but unfortunately this won’t be enough to give her the green light to the grand final. Oh, and the costume change is beyond cringe.
Cristian: I can’t stand country, so you can already get that I cannot be a fan of this song. I like the pre-chorus, but that’s all. And what about the lyrics? “Blue is blue and red is red” — you don’t say?!
Deban: Manuella reminds me of Anna Rossinelli. That’s a plus! However, blue and red isn’t my favourite colour-combo, and neither is this entry. It lacks life shortly after it beats, only to rely on optical illusion, and costume-change gimmicks to revive itself later. In a sea of comeback stars and stellar compositions, Slovenia’s colours won’t stand out this year.
Robyn: “Blue and Red” isn’t a bad song, but the big problem is ManuElla’s styling. For some reason she’s decided to be a copy and paste of Taylor Swift from eight years ago, the country-pop teen phase. But even T-Swizzle has ditched that look, and now goes for a cool metropolitan style. If ManuElla wants to stand out, she needs to discover her own style, and not come across like a weird hybrid of teen Tay-Tay and the tacky Bucks Fizz costume pull-away.
Kristin: She could easily enter a Leanne Rimes look-a-like contest, but ManuElla unfortunately does not sound like anything like her. The song itself is a nice country-pop number, and maybe with the right staging and some serious voice coaching, could squeeze itself to the finals. But I’m a girl who was raised listening to legends like Loretta Lynn and Patsy Cline, so leaves me empty. I’m not feeling the country vibes, only the rip-off vibes. Sorry Slovenia.
Josh: Slovenia is trying their hand at a supposed Taylor Swift rip-off now. This would’ve been cute back in 2006 when country music was at its popular peak, but we’re in 2016 now and Tay-Tay has reinvented herself into a global pop star. ManuElla is not global, nor is she a pop star.
Mario: Pre-commercial Taylor Swift’s style I never liked. ManuElla is in the same boat. “Blue and Red” is dated, uninspiring and followed by the (very) nonsensical lyrics. A shame if you ask me — the singer’s stage charisma and talent are immense!
Padraig: Blue is blue and red is red. But mix them both together and you get purple – the colour of royalty. Alas, “Blue and Red” is more for the peasants. It’s country pop by numbers. There’s plenty of twang and ManuElla’s voice sounds suitably American. However, the song is lacking. The lyrics are overly simple and the metaphors come across as childish rather than thoughtful. The costume change feels like a desperate attempt to inject some life into this jaded number. I sense that the colour combination of black and blue may be more appropriate for Slovenia, because this is going to get a battering in the semis.
William: “You were not a composer, I am not your song” — ManuElla is cutting straight to the chase! Her delightful ditty, which is all about ditching her man and getting her happy back, builds a bridge from Ljubljana to Nashville. The country-pop sound is a nice addition to the contest, as are ManuElla’s sultry sex goddess vocals. My one piece of advice: Don’t look so startled during your wardrobe change. You need to own your transformation on stage, just as you did when you said goodbye to Mr Wrong.
In the Wiwi Jury we have 40 jurors but only have room for 12 reviews. The remaining 28 scores are below.
William C: 2.5/10
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 1 and a high of 7.5.