The Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — continues to rank and review the 43 songs competing in Eurovision 2018. Next we head to Montenegro where we listen to Balkan balladeer Vanja Radovanovic and his song “Inje” (Frost). Did it give us chills? Read on to find out!
Vanja Radovanovic with “Inje”
Anthony: Back to basics for Montenegro with their tried and tested formula — a good old vintage Balkan ballad sung entirely in Montenegrin. While it resulted in two consecutive qualifiers, there’s no guarantee it’ll be third time lucky for Vanja. “Inje” lacks depth and ends up sounding a tad repetitive to even be considered in the same league as “Moj Svijet” and “Adio”.
Bogdan: Eurovision would not be complete without the staple Balkan ballad. However, as Balkan ballads go, “Inje” is too formulaic, reductive and forgettable, despite Vanja’s competent singing. While certainly pleasant when listening to it, “Inje” is nothing to write home about, like “Lane Moje” was 14 years ago. Others have done it better before, and sadly “Inje” brings nothing fresh to the table.
Jovana: I see “Inje” as Montenegro’s attempt to repeat their biggest Eurovision success so far by sending an entry similar to their most successful one – “Adio”. That is this song’s biggest strength and at the same time biggest flaw. There is certainly a quality here, but it sounds just too much like other Balkan-style ballads we have had a chance to hear at this festival. Plus, Vanja is quite a new face, while Zeljko Joksimovic and Knez are big stars and at least that attracted the fans from former Yugoslavia to vote for them. I do not know what to expect. It could do really well or not well at all.
Luis: Montenegro’s entry is a perfectly formulaic Balkan ballad. It doesn’t bring anything new to the table, and it doesn’t quite reach any new heights. While “Inje” tries to be dramatic and transcendent, in the end, it happens to be a bit troubadour-esque. The big problem is that it’s not even pretentious enough to hate it: you just look past it and play the next song in the playlist.
Sebastian: The revamp of “Inje” transformed an absolute no-hoper to a potential qualifier if Montenegro’s cards fall right. Previously monotonous and forgettable, the backing track now takes the listener on an aural journey. If they can match staging to Montenegro’s 2014 levels, this might just cross the line to a grand-final return.
William: Simple, sweet and dramatic, “Inje” would absolutely slay a Balkan ballad contest. Sadly, when it comes to Balkan ballads at Eurovision, we’ve heard this all before and we’ve heard it done better. This feels like a pastiche of Zeljko Joksimovic, Knez and that group from Croatia that sang “Misery”. It’s too formulaic and ultimately too forgettable. Nice bridge though!
In the Wiwi Jury we have 20 jurors but only have room for six reviews. The remaining scores are below:
We have removed the highest and lowest scores prior to calculating the average. This is to remove outliers and potential bias. We have removed a low of 1 and a high of 7.
Wiwi Jury verdict: 5.19/10
What do you think of this song? Share your own score and review below!