Nicky Byrne The Voice of Ireland Final

Nicky Byrne’s promotional tour for Eurovision 2016 has taken him to Ukraine and London. But on Sunday night he was back on home soil for a guest spot on the The Voice of Ireland. As viewers waited for their new Voice winner to be crowned, Nicky entertained them with a rousing rendition of “Sunlight”. However, things didn’t go as smoothly as planned.

The performance was beset with sound issues from the off. The opening lines were barely audible, while Nicky was forced to remove one of his earpieces. Nevertheless, he attacked the the song with gusto. And aside from one or two bum notes, he put on a credible show. If we leave the vocals to one side, the appearance also gave us an insight into Ireland’s potential staging for Stockholm.

Nicky Byrne “Sunlight” at The Voice of Ireland Final

The stage-show will be familiar to those who saw his Ukrainian TV slot in February. Once again, it resembles a set at a rock concert. Byrne takes centre-stage, backed by a drummer, a guitarist and a keyboardist — all of whom provide backing vocals. A large LED screen dominates, displaying a multitude of dilating wheels or cogs. The colour scheme is mainly black and red, turning to blue just before the final chorus kicks in.

Choreography is kept to a minimum. There are no additional dancers on stage, while the ex-Westlife star stands behind the microphone for most of the song. As the pace picks up, he pulls out some moves that mimic those seen in his official music video. Byrne is currently riding high in our Eurovision’s Next Top Male Model poll, so wardrobe is all important. He sports a tan jacket, white t-shirt, jeans, boots and some well-manicured stubble — not too shabby.

Ireland have a mixed record when it comes to staging. In 2011, they carried it off with aplomb — with some frenetic LED screens and sparkly costumes helping propel Jedward to the top ten. By contrast, Kasey Smith crashed out of the 2014 semi-final with a stage-show that resembled The Only Way is Essex meets Game of Thrones.

Would the Voice of Ireland staging equal success if replicated in Sweden? Or is it too simple? Would it be forgotten amidst the grand spectacles promised by the likes of Russia and Iceland? Let us know in the comments below.

Nicky Byrne interview at London Eurovision Party

Nicky Byrne “Sunlight” at London Eurovision Party

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Deven O'Kearney
Deven O'Kearney
4 years ago

Yeah. Even our worst entres ever (Dustin The Turkey) came 15th and Donna and Joe came 13th in a 20+ semi final. Every other time we’ve failed we’ve come close to making it (especially 2009). We’ve still qualified more often than not. Something that neither Austria nor Portugal can brag about.

Hopefully we’ll make it. But only if the live performance is good enough.

By the way, the best outlook to have for 2016 is, if we don’t do well in ESC, we still have Junior Eurovision.

Cathal
Cathal
4 years ago

@Darren We are definitely not the new Portugal or new Austria. We are always borderline atleast in the semi no matter what we send unlike the other two.

David Who
David Who
4 years ago

I’m so so sorry, because I love Nicky as a person, but… it’s 0 points from me. Awful tuning and timing. 🙁
Hopefully things will go better in Stockholm. x

Darren
Darren
4 years ago

@Deven when I said Ireland was the new Portugal, I meant it in the way that Ireland will always struggle to qualify and like Portugal and Austria until Conchita won, will be one of the countries that never qualify. And yes, Portugal has been severely underrated! They should have qualified in 2014, they had an awesome song that year and yes, they didn’t qualify in 2015, and I agree that the song was very bad, but it wasn’t as “hideous” as you say

niko
niko
4 years ago

Very poor vocals. Sorry Ireland.

Deven O'Kearney
Deven O'Kearney
4 years ago

To my fellow Irishmen and women on this website ????????; Stop getting so worked up. People are entitled to their opinions. You’re going to hear things that you won’t want to hear. If Ireland doesn’t qualify, don’t be surprised. We have some very stiff competition on our hands this year. There’s a very strong field of songs this year and it’s not enough to have a former member of Westlife perform an average pop song that could easily be overshadowed by stronger packages. About @Ciaran’s comment, “We could send a winning song and still fail to qualify!”,????????????????, in Eurovision, what… Read more »

Alex
Alex
4 years ago

Well that was just an unfortunate moment. It’s gonna work in Stockholm, I’m sure of it!

Good luck Nicky,
Good luck Ireland :)))

Ron
Ron
4 years ago

@Previ, something went drastically wrong with the sound on the show. I’m guessing that the backing track in Nicky’s earpiece was not in synch with the speakers in the theatre and the live TV feed. He kept going off the beat and was well ahead of the backing tracking heading into the last chorus.

Ironically, I think he was pretty good vocally here, one of his better performances of the song.

cheesecake
cheesecake
4 years ago

I would love Ireland to do well and I want to like it, but for me there’s just nothing positive about this – apart from the song’s message, I guess.
Unfortunately I don’t see any improvement on his vocals either (unlike with Lidia or Rykka). The staging is boring as well.
I sincerely hope this won’t qualify as it simply doesn’t deserve to. On the other hand I’m afraid Ireland might withdraw if they don’t make it…

Darren
Darren
4 years ago

Laughing at everyone who now suddenly likes Molly Sterling. The amount of flack and criticism that she got last year from all the wannabe “music professionals” on this website.
Her song was underrated by all you last year, hope yous realise that.

Previ
Previ
4 years ago

What’s the reason he is out of sync exactly? Can’t he hear the song through the speakers? Maybe there is a slight delay ?

boyan08
boyan08
4 years ago

Oh No.For this song the staging is bad.I think,For the Spot in the final , there will be fight between Macedonia,Ireland and maybe Belgium.But Ireland left the battle.Molly was the best!

esc 2016
esc 2016
4 years ago

Ohh damn….his voice in live is more annoying…..I didnt reach 1.5 mins…very bad live….
Moly is 100 times better than hin
Next year Ireland…

Manne
4 years ago

He is 1000 times better than Russia.

Rita
Rita
4 years ago

That wasn’t too bad. You can tell there’s sound problems at the beginning but he actually sings it well until he lost count of the measures of rest he had at the end which made him early but even then, his vocals are not too wrecked. Make sure you count Nicky!

Miguel
Miguel
4 years ago

Oh, man! I felt bad for him watching this performance.

Hopefully he’ll get everything ready for the semifinal. He’ll have a shot at qualifying if so.

Simen Hauge
Simen Hauge
4 years ago

You wont become a rockstar with a popsong

Ron
Ron
4 years ago

People are commenting on the clip as if there were no sound problems and this was just a regular (terrible) Nicky Byrne performance. It’s obvious though be could barely hear the backing track, especially when he went well ahead of the beat during the final chorus.

I somehow doubt this is the ESC staging. It looked like generic Voice of Ireland type staging and lighting to me and, at a guess, nothing like what we’ll see in Globen.

Transmermaid
Transmermaid
4 years ago

OUCH! i cringed

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
4 years ago

Nicky is experienced enough to know what to do when something goes wrong on live TV. He recovered from that the best he could, and he can take comfort that SVT wouldn’t mess up the sound like that.

I’m nervous about the live band set-up though. This is like a UK move – treat ESC like it’s Glastonbury and deliver a rock concert performance for the audience in the arena, forgetting about the millions of people watching at home.

Anfrers
4 years ago

Lmao 2:30 x’D if he sings this way in the actual contest I won’t have to make a lipdub parody for it lol.

Natalia Kills
Natalia Kills
4 years ago

Awful! Delete him, now.

Tomás
Tomás
4 years ago

‘TOWIE meets Game of Thrones’ – LOL

Isnt it a little ironic to have Nicky on a show that is based on people having a great voice no matter how they look, not the other way around?

As an Irishman, I am super ashamed of this song. It absolutely does not deserve to qualify at all – even if he got the vocals perfect. William keeps going on about how bland Germany’s song is – this song is as bland as a giant cube of white paper in an empty white room. SNORE-CRINGE

Pastora Soler haha!
Pastora Soler haha!
4 years ago

I’m sorry for him but he is not going to qualify.

Bouke
Bouke
4 years ago

OMG, what an awful live performance. Ireland will definitely not qualify with this performance.

I’m sorry, but from 2:30 I was laughing xD

Jake
Jake
4 years ago

Oh boy. Love him and the song but this was not what I had envisioned for the performance. And it seems he doesn’t really believe it elther. It’s coming across and staged more like a water-down rock song and i always heard the song as a clap-along pop anthem. It screams happy summer to me and he’s going for a brooding generic rock vibe. He does really need to be bathed in great yellow light and the lighting needs to play off the song itself. This staging could fit any song

YoungsterJoey
YoungsterJoey
4 years ago

Oh. I stopped at 2:40. Couldn’t go further. *cringe*

But I do hope Ireland makes it to the final! I think it would be devastating for Nicky to not advance.

Jonas
Jonas
4 years ago

Luckily for Nicky, this is not the semi-final. You can’t judge what his actual Eurovision performance will be like based on this clip. Okay, it may give a clue – but surely he will step it up a bit in Stockholm. As much as I think the song is mediocre and his voice personality-free and weak, I still would like to see Ireland qualify.

El Rosario de Raquel
4 years ago

Nicky, you are the voice the future?

Meow
Meow
4 years ago

It’s not bad,there was mistakes here and there,but it’s not awful.
Ireland defiantly need better staging, yellow lights, a shiny performance that makes you happy and in the mood to buy tickets for sunny country. I want them to make it to the final, it’s not because the cuteness of the singer, I just want to see them in the final. by the way, I loved last year Ireland’s entry and was so sad for them not make it to the final…

Gareth
Gareth
4 years ago

The whole concept is extremely boring

MarioMario
4 years ago

As weak as it get.

Cathal
Cathal
4 years ago

@Frozen His ear piece wasn’t working….

MirkoJoshua
MirkoJoshua
4 years ago

Ireland WILL qualify for sure

Darren
Darren
4 years ago

@Ciara
If the staging was done right, and Nicky’s vocals are on point, we could qualify in 6th-8th place. Then in the Grand Final I think Ireland could place anywhere from 15th-26th if everything goes right.
I personally think he could qualify, given that he is already well known (relatively) and Ireland has support from the United Kingdom, Australia, Denmark, Belgium, and Germany, who historically have given us points. Westlife were also successful in the Uk, Denmark, Germany and Australia (also Sweden but they’re not voting) so hopefully that stands to him.

ct_greece
ct_greece
4 years ago

So dreadfully boring even before all his mistakes. Non-qualifier.

Craig
Craig
4 years ago

That is a very generous review of that performance, wiwi bloggs. I like Nicky Byrne, but he’s not a very good singer. The last 30 seconds of that were woeful. If he can’t hold notes when he’s moving around, he should just stay still behind the mic the whole time

Cathal
Cathal
4 years ago

P.S in regards to staging I wouldn’t be so sure that this is the staging, I read an interview somewhere where he said he will have 2 dancers on stage and the performance will be “energetic”. Ive given up caring about the hate comments, he has an impressive hate base ( on par with Frans ) and haters speak louder. Anyone with an open mind coming in here would be able to admit that this performance was largely down to technical problems and its resembles what I heard during the Portugese jury rehearsal last year and they got to perform… Read more »

Ben Rafter
Ben Rafter
4 years ago

A bit better than the disaster that was London. The timing was a disaster and his vocals are weak. Ireland, my country, won’t be qualifying this year????

Ciara
Ciara
4 years ago

@Darren oh no…. not Portugal
I do agree that Ireland fill the stage, and sometimes there is no point. But I really want them to get their act together.

Where do ye think Ireland will come this year if they improve the staging more? Will we reach the final, and if so where would we place?

FrozenEsc
FrozenEsc
4 years ago

I suspect 15-18 In Jury and 5-10 In televote

FrozenEsc
FrozenEsc
4 years ago

I’ve always supported Nicky, but i’ve got to admit he was dreadful. He was way off tune and ahead of the track. We need to hope for a miracle.

Cathal
Cathal
4 years ago

Dont scroll down, a lot of mean nasty comments below!

Ciaran
Ciaran
4 years ago

@Ciara I totally agree some of these problems were not Nicky’s and he definitely needs better staging. I really hope we qualify but we need changes and they better do it quick as we don’t have much time. Between his vocals, staging and backing track we need to fix this fast!!!

Darren
Darren
4 years ago

RTÉ uses the same staging every year…fill the stage with as many people as possible. This has been happening since 2008! Even Molly last year has a whole band with her, it would have been so much more effective if it was just her and her piano. Kind of pointless considering the band members don’t even play the instruments on stage at Eurovision. Nicky should be on stage by himself, with maybe 2-3 dancers after the bridge. The LED screens should be orange/Yellow, considering the song is called “Sunlight”. This song could get a decent qualification if the staging was… Read more »

Ciara
Ciara
4 years ago

The start problems …… The problems towards the end ….. oh dear.

The start wasn’t his fault, so I suppose I can get over that. But the problems starting at 2:31 were horrible and then the absolute mess at 2:40….. Chances of qualifying are low, and I would LOVE us to qualify!

The staging is kind of meh. It’s not great but it’s not bad either. He does need a better stage performance in Sweden.

PRAY TO GOD THAT WE QUALIFY!!!

Ciaran
Ciaran
4 years ago

Wow so much negativity about Irelands song. Don’t get me wrong its not the best but Nicky is improving his vocals. The song is catchy and being after the girl who looks like she is having a fit he has a strong position. I really hope Nicky can make it to the finals as Ireland are always the underrated country. We could send a wining song and not qualify. Anyway good luck Nicky and I hope you make it to the final !!!

zeze
zeze
4 years ago

Granted the performance wasn’t the best but this has nothing to do with him – however, from vocal point of view, he hit his notes, even that “sun” bit in the beginning that was troubling before wasn’t bad at all.

It is a shame because his vocals were really ok actually, the best so far.In fact, he was very very close to the studio version, apart from the bad start when he had to take of his earpiece and when he started sooner than the background music near the end I really wouldn’t blame him on this.

Robbo
Robbo
4 years ago

Don’t get the ‘cogs’ in the screen displays. And the light show is too rock-y for a pop song. All a bit confused.

Bis
Bis
4 years ago

This does not sound like a qualifier…