Yesterday the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — travelled to Cyprus. We got ourselves to a sunny Mediterranean beach and discussed Minus One‘s song “Alter Ego”. Did we like this other side of Cyprus’ personality? Read on to find out!

Minus One – “Alter Ego”

“Alter Ego” reviews

Kristin: Oh Cyprus, how you’ve swept me off my feet. This simply has to be in the finals, and preferably reach top 3. Hell, I hope they win. There, I’ve said it! Last year, when Minus One came second in the Cypriot finals, I was in awe because of them. Now I’ve passed the awe and moved straight into hotdamn! This is by far, my absolute favourite this year. A solid rock number with immensely catchy chorus and bulletproof vocals. Dark, yet accessible. I’ll gladly wave the Cypriot flag as a support in Stockholm, no doubt.

Score: 10/10

Angus: If Cyprus don’t end up in the top 10 this year, something is wrong with the universe. For real, this is the strongest play Cyprus have made since Ivi Adamou rocked that dance breakdown and unlike Ivan, I’m feeling the lycanthropy vibes loud and strong here through the howls. Where do I sign up to be a groupie?

Score: 6.5/10

Max: This is an enjoyable three minutes of pop-rock with a chorus that sticks, but I’m not completely sold. I find it a little flat and a little dated. Having said that, I think fans of the genre will go crazy for this come May. Although “Alter Ego” isn’t one of my personal favourites, kudos to Cyprus for sending something outside of the box. Even though rock has found more of a grounding in this year’s contest, this still feels like an original and unexpected entry.

Score: 6/10

Bernardo: Last year I used Cyprus entry as my toilet break. Not 2016! After casting a sleeping spell over Europe that got them to the final last year, the small island is playing their ace of spades — Minus One with “Alter Ego”. An incredible rock-influenced entry that appeals not only to rock fans but really everyone. This is what I call diversity and risk-taking — Cyprus nailed it. With the correct stage performance we have a top-15 finisher.

Score: 6/10

Bogdan: Cyprus’s entry this year is the best bet the country’s had for a while. I expect the show will be a dazzling display of energy and lights, similar to Softengine’s show-stopping performance in 2014. “Alter Ego” deserves to reclaim its place in the top 10, in the name of all the pop-rock lovers in the Eurovision fandom.

Score: 7.5/10

Cristian: Usually I am not a lover of rock but I think this Cypriot entry is really cool and strong. “Alter Ego” is an energetic radio friendly song, I’m sure Minus One will set fire to the stage with their performance. I definitely cannot see this song staying in the semis.

Score: 8/10

Deban: Pop-rock shaken into a headbanger’s cocktail. This entry has gusto! It’s bold, fuller flavoured and screams hedonism. Against a backdrop of tamer entries, “Alter Ego” stands out. Should it advance? Most definitely!

Score: 6.5/10

Liam: Cyprus is a country that wouldn’t usually send such a good song. So to hear this, I was pleasantly surprised. Never have liked a rock entry as much as this one at Eurovision.

Score: 10/10

Mario: Good job on this one, Sir G:son! For a country with poor record in Eurovision, this is freaking amazing. Energy-filled and such a 2016 pop-rock music representative, it makes me wonder why isn’t it already on Billboard’s top 100 list, seriously.

Score: 7/10

Padraig: Not since Manga have we had such a strong rock entry at Eurovision. “Alter Ego” may be too poppy for rock purists, but this is a contest that requires mass appeal. And the track has that by the bucket load. The pounding instrumental, combined with a hook-laden chorus makes for the perfect stadium anthem. Minus One bring us on a frantic rush through the human experience. The lyrics are a tad abstract, even nonsensical, but that hardly matters. With a little pyro, plenty of camera cuts and loads of dramatic lighting there’s nothing to stop Cyprus storming up the leaderboard.

Score: 7/10

Robyn: Minus One and co-writer Thomas G:son have cleverly combined the band’s rock roots with a really strong, solid pop core. With a lot of rock-style songs in the contest this year, “Alter Ego” stands out as the most accessible and most enjoyable. Even the guitar solo works because the song is otherwise so relentlessly pop. This is the big pop-rock moment 2016 needs.

Score: 9/10

William: I don’t like rock music, but boy do I love this! It’s everything rock should be — gritty, loud and just a little bit angry. But Minus One wisely hyphenate their rock with pop, creating a delightful crossover track that appeals to music fans regardless of whether they wear shredded jeans or not. Pumped up and pulsating, the chorus is a proper adrenaline rush. Minus One + Eurovision 2016 = SUCCESS.

Score: 7.5/10

In the Wiwi Jury we have 40 jurors but only have room for 12 reviews. The remaining 28 scores are below.

Anthony: 9/10

Antranig: 9.5/10

Chris: 8/10

David: 5/10

Dayana: 6.5/10

Denise: 8.5/10

Diego: 8/10

Edd: 7.5/10

Forrest: 6.5/10

George: 10/10

Gökhan: 8.5/10

Jason: 6/10

Josh: 8.5/10

Judit: 7/10

Luis: 10/10

Marek: 6/10

Maria: 6/10

Mike: 5.5/10

Mikhail: 7/10

Patrick: 6.5/10

Renske: 8/10

Rezo: 7/10

Sami: 9/10

Sinan: 8.5/10

Steinunn: 7.5/10

Tobias: 5/10

William C: 6/10

Zakaria: 9/10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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 5 and a high of 10.

WIWI JURY SCORE: 7.51/10

SEE OUR CURRENT EUROVISION 2016 REVIEWS AND RANKINGS

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CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

My #11 after my first evaluation. Their video is reminiscent of quite a few alt-rock videos from the 1990s. This could be the biggest surprise in years.

jacob
Guest
jacob

7,5/10 – Great song, I feel some Fall Out Boy vibes to it. It’s catchy, nice, and the vocalist seems like an experienced one.

Jerome
Guest
Jerome

9/10
I see this song as being rock, bordering on pop, which is why this appeals to me so much. The strong start gives the impression that it’s powerful, and this is sustained throughout the song with the vocals and the bass and drums in the background. Seeing that there are three rock bands this year, at least one of them has to make the final. It should be this one.

mawnck
Guest
mawnck

Re: the jersey. It’s not American football. If it were, the logos would be recognizable (to an American anyway), and the collar would either be V-neck or a lot smaller than that. He might THINK it’s an American football jersey, just like he probably thinks his song is rock and roll. I’ve already expressed at great length how much I detest this song, so I’ll just sum it up here by saying “Blehh!”, and I hope everyone isn’t too shocked when LITERALLY everyone who is not a card-carrying Eurovision fan refuses to vote for it, including the jury members. This… Read more »

WTF
Guest
WTF

Alter Ego, or Cypriot rockers selling their souls to the Swedish devil in order to appease the eurofans… Joking aside, I don’t mind their song, but if we’re talking about rock entries, actual rock entries, Georgia is the true standout this year.

ESCaddict
Guest
ESCaddict

Where is all the bitching about Swedish songwriters?
Anyway it is a great song but I feel many other songs will over shadow it in the competition. It deserves to go to the final.
I rank it 11 of 43.

SpirK
Guest
SpirK

8.5/10 and my 10th! Really catchy, with fantastic vocals and the right combination of pop and rock! Having no one grading this under 5 is a huge success! Good luck Cyprus!!

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

An enjoyable song but a bit too middle-ground. Not going to be rocky enough to get the rock votes but not poppy enough to get the pop votes. I, for one, wish it was one thing or the other. With the right staging, this should be a strong contender in the semi-finals and a decent finals entry but it could have been more with better song-writing!
7/10

Bis
Guest
Bis

The best Cypriot entry in many years! I won’t be surprised if it gives Cyprus its best result ever

JuanPablo
Guest
JuanPablo

No me gusta… ¡Me encanta!

I think this is the best I’ve seen from Cyprus. It should finish top 5 if not winning.

Uplifting with lots of personality music. Can’t wait to see it on Stockholm.

Holden
Guest
Holden

I did not like them live in Moscow. 5.5 / 10

Azaad
Guest
Azaad

As the one nearly universally liked rock song this year, it will do well, considering how evocative it is of maNGa’s We Could Be The Same, which finished 2nd.

Ben Rafter
Guest
Ben Rafter

9/10
This song is awesome! You all said that, but gave it 6s or 7s. If this was Sweden you would’ve all given an 8 or something like that.

Héctor
Guest
Héctor

Love this song, I’m sure they will make it to the final. They remind me of MaNGa, I would like Minus One to repeat their success, but I think they won’t reach the Top 5 as “We could be the same” was something relatively “new” in 2010. Also, their live in Moscow dissapointed me a bit, maybe it was because the sound quality in the video, we’ll see this Saturday. In my top they are in 2nd place (may vary depending on their next live) 8’5/10

Huh
Guest
Huh

Of course people will like it because it’s G:son’s work 🙂

manu
Guest
manu

William, you like this because it is not rock music , it´s a schlager disguised as rock

Alison
Guest
Alison

This is most definitely pop-rock or schlager-rock as I’ve seen it described elsewhere – which is why it’s so popular across much of the Eurovision fanbase. I like it and hope it does well though it does feel very manufactured to do well at Eurovision, not at all organic to them.

cheesecake
Guest
cheesecake

This is the best Cypriot entry in years and undoubtably better than “La La Love”.
I wouldn’t be surprised if they made the top 5.

Laburnum
Guest
Laburnum

10/10. Best Cypriot entry ever at Eurovision imo.

Tom
Guest
Tom

Loving this rock flavoured pop from Cyprus! Definitely the best one they’ve sent since Ivi. If they perform this well I foresee a top 10 finish.

Good Luck Cyprus!

beccaboo1212
Guest

To me, Minus One is like a Cypriot version of Maroon 5. 🙂
10/10

Rock?
Guest
Rock?

Just a reminder. This is NOT rock, it’s anything but rock. Don’t fool yourself, if everybody likes this song is because it’s a pop song disguised as a rock song.

So bee free, stop pretending you like this rock wannabe… or at least, be honest and say that you like this pop song.

Darren
Guest
Darren

By far, the best Cypriot entry since Ivi Adamou, and miles better than the sleep fest from last year, which imo didn’t deserve to qualify.
This year, Cyprus has entered a pop-rock group similar to Coldplay and the Killers, which is welcome! I love this combination and it does well at ESC. I expect it to qualify and manage to wriggle it’s way into the top 10. Well done Cyprus! 7/10 🙂

Bapak Lurah
Guest
Bapak Lurah

One of my Top 3! I hope this entry will do well in Stockholm this May!
9/10

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Pollaski: We’ll be talking to Minus One in Amsterdam this weekend, so if the opportunity arises, we’ll ask them about the jersey! 😀

Pollaski
Guest
Pollaski

@John Doe
Bon Jovi would actually be a good one.

Axl Rose doesn’t quite fit- the style’s just too different.

Josh
Guest
Josh

Jamala given an online concert, here is 1944:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1NuZ8IHK-JA

Pollaski
Guest
Pollaski

@Robyn Gallagher Well obviously Cowboys springs to mind, and that’s what I thought at first- but it doesn’t look like a Cowboys jersey. Its just not quite the Cowboys style Too dark, almost black. The only other Co- team is the colts, and they’re blue, so its not them either. Its definitely a more retro style- 80s/90s, not current day. I want to say Raiders, but I dont think so. I’m not sure its even an NFL jersey- there’s no NFL patch anywhere, and the Captain’s Insignia (the C on the left breast) isn’t the usual NFL style. It doesn’t… Read more »

John Doe
Guest
John Doe

@Pollaski
Bon Jovi, Axel Rose, Paul Stanley……………Sergey Lazarev??????

Digital Style
Guest
Digital Style

This song is just incredible. Francois has an incredible voice and this song is so intense and majestic, it sounds like something footballers would walk on to in the Champions League. The lyrics are beautiful and really well written. This is in my top 3 along with Estonia and Latvia. It definitely deserves Top 10, maybe even a win! Well done Cyprus, you’ve made a masterpiece and your best ever entry.

Fergy
Guest
Fergy

I’ve seen that most people who rate this song are the same people who always complain about Swedish sounding songs and Swedish songwriters and yet Alter Ego is written by the biggest culprit of them all G:Son xD Just some Irony I noticed.

GEF
Guest
GEF

Very catchy and energetic song. IMO the best ESC rock song since “We could be the same”, “Na Inat” and “New Tomorrow”. Will definately qualify for the finals.

My rating so far:

Alter Ego / Play / Say Yay: 9,0
Ghost / Pioneer / Slow Down: 8,0
What’s the pressure?: 7,5
Goodbye: 7,0
Icebreaker: 6,5
Colour of your life: 6,0
Blue and red: 5,0
Dona: 4,5
Falling Star: 4,0
Soldiers of Love: 3,0

Pollaski
Guest
Pollaski

@John Doe
Just outta curiosity… which rock star are you suggesting he study?

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Pollaski: His jersey is for a team name that start with Co… – and it looks like an American football style jersey. Any ideas?

John Doe
Guest
John Doe

Yep, yep, yep…Minus One is my favourite this year.
However, Francois isn’t a charismatic lead singer. He should study rock stars how to be a showman. He walks on the stage as if he was walking in a park with his dog. These guys need a good choreography because they often move randomly which results in minor accidents (Moscow, pre-party). Good luck!!!!!

Pollaski
Guest
Pollaski

The hell is the jersey the guy on the left is wearing? It looks Raiders but… *squint* I can’t tell for sure. Anyways Pretty formulaic 21st century rock here, but honestly, I like it. Guys got a better voice than most frontmen, honestly, and they’ve got a good chemistry and groove. With only a handful of true rock songs in the competition, and most of them absolutely disastrous (as is the case frequently, sadly), this one’s going to stand out rather well. HOpefully for the stage show they keep it simple, bring it out, and let the song shine through,… Read more »

Colin
Guest
Colin

Certainly a good song. Somewhere between a 7 and an 8 to me.