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 host country Portugal and take a look at The Voice star Cláudia Pascoal and her song “O jardim” (The garden). Did we want to take a moment to smell the roses? Read on to find out!
Cláudia Pascoal – “O jardim”
Luis: Portugal has found a new formula at Eurovision and I’m more than willing to embrace it. “O jardim” is hauntingly beautiful, simple and delicate, yet contemporary enough to keep the audience engaged. Cláudia and Isaura add layers and layers of texture to this song and manage to create a striking performance with the simplest setting. What’s even better about this entry is that goes far beyond Eurovision: “O jardim” can be the soundtrack of any peaceful moment of your life. Obrigado Portugal!
Robyn: Oh, this song gives me chills. It has a simple beauty and it Cláudia’s vocals carry the emotion of the lyrics without requiring the audience to know a word of Portuguese. This is the modern face of Portugal at Eurovision and it works. The staging needs some improvement, though. While Isaura brings gorgeous vocal depth to the performance, her fashion straitjacket and barstool combination at Festival da Canção seemed an odd match for the song.
Sebastian: Claudia delivers a somewhat haunting piece, with a beat, rhythm and atmosphere that grows little by little across three minutes. Even though it lacks the typical crescendo, its absence seems fitting and oddly appropriate to the tone of the song. Ethereal and enticing, Claudia’s garden is definitely the place I want to be in Lisbon.
Bernardo: Portugal didn’t change much in their winning national final formula. Festival da Canção had big shoes to fill and — thankfully — “O Jardim” showed up, snatched the crown and continues Portugal’s trend of sending quality entries. The production is complex in its simplicity and Claúdia’s ethereal vocals shine through it. It’s a slow burn that leaves you wanting for more. Beautifully crafted and emotionally intense. A proud Portuguese here.
Chris: First things first, Claudia is stunningly beautiful. Admittedly, I may have some jealousy over that amazing pink shade in her hair. Bubblegum shade maybe, but bubblegum pop this is not. Maybe it doesn’t feel quite “right” for Eurovision, but Portugal has already proven that idea wrong. “O jardim” is understated and charming. One quibble, though. Whilst there’s nothing inherently wrong with Isaura’s cameo, it does seem to take the spotlight away from Claudia. She commands the stage on her own: she doesn’t really need the help.
Jovana: “O jardim” is proof of why sometimes it is better to perform in your own language. Cláudia simply seems to feel every single word she is singing, and that cannot leave you indifferent. Her performance is so touching and so peaceful at the same time. The magical, heaven-like tone of the song raises you up and calms you down at the same time. What cannot be a minus, though, is that some people might find it similar to “Amar pelos dois” and compare it negatively to it.
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 4 and a high of 9.5.
Wiwi Jury verdict: 7.19/10
What do you think of this song? Share your own score and review below!