The Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — continues to rate and review the 41 competing entries of Eurovision 2019. Next we say hello again to Hungary‘s Eurovision 2017 star Joci Pápai, who this time will perform “Az én apám”. Did we feel moved by his fatherly ode? Read on to find out!

Joci Pápai with “Az én apám”

“Az én apám” reviews

Antranig: I am not a fan of “Origo”, though I appreciate its musicality. I am a huge fan of “Az én apám” though. Joci Pápai speaks to my soul despite the fact that I don’t speak a lick of Hungarian. This man is one of a kind — nobody can create an atmosphere the way Joci does. I am absolutely mesmerised by this entry and when I close my eyes, I feel like Joci transports me to a different place and time. He is so talented and this effort is breathtaking.

Score: 9.5/10

Antony: “Az én apám” has a pleasant and gentle quality to it with its guitar-based vibe. Because of this, it is not instantly catchy as it runs smoothly. Luckily, it does build up as Joci starts to belt out more with more of a memorable melody. The song allows for his vocal abilities and emotional attachment to the song to flourish, which will be loved by many.

Score: 5/10

William: Born to an orchestra leader and raised with the unique musical traditions of the Romani people, Joci brings spiritual depth in spades. His music is at once earthy and organic but somehow elevated and transcendent. He’s like an angel masquerading as a busker and I am here for it. This song, however, needs a bit of an edit. It simmers for a bit too long and only really starts to cook two minutes in. Unfortunately by then I’ve left the room for something more substantial and filling.

Score: 4/10

Barnabas: Many people have been moaning about “Az Én Apám” being worse than Origo. But guess what: I am much more into this effort of Joci than the one back in 2017! In some way, it just appeals to me more, and while it’s more radio-friendly than its predecessor, you can still hear Joci’s one-of-a-kind sound in it, boosted with another easy part that everyone can sing along to. If you ask me, I don’t see Hungary’s qualifying streak breaking this year, and while I have no clue where it will finish in the final, it will surely be one of my top tracks of this season.

Score: 9/10

Lucy: For me, Hungary’s songs are always a huge grower. I didn’t enjoy “Origo” at all at A Dal but loved it in Kyiv. Sadly, “Az én apám” isn’t growing yet. I do like it considerably more than I first liked “Origo”, but it’s just staying put and getting overtaken often in my top 41. It’s pleasant, the “na-na-na” hook is so pleasing, but it’s just quite flat in comparison to his last try at Eurovision. Pairing this with the photograph-based staging he will be putting out there in Tel Aviv, I feel this may fail to make enough of an impact to get anywhere near his previous success.

Score: 6/10

Robyn: Two years ago, “Origo” was one of my big favourites in Kyiv and its top-ten placing was well deserved. This time, I’m still really enjoying “Az én apám”, but it seems less certain to enjoy Eurovision success. The problem is, Joci’s song for Tel Aviv is very low-key. There’s nothing about it that sticks in the memory. And in a semi-final full of memorable acts, this could be an issue. I’d love to see Hungary in the final, but I’m not sure if things will work out this year.

Score: 6.5/10

In the Wiwi Jury we have 29 jurors but only have room for six reviews. The remaining scores are below:

Angus: 5.5/10

Anthony: 7.5/10

Bernardo: 6/10

Calvin: 4.5/10

Chris: 7/10

Deban: 7.5/10

Essi: 4/10

Florian: 4/10

Izhar: 7/10

Jack: 9.5/10

Jonathan: 6.5/10

Josh: 8/10

Julian: 7.5/10

Kristin: 7/10

Luis: 6/10

Lukas: 5/10

Mikhail: 6.5/10

Oliver: 4.5/10

Pablo: 2/10

Renske: 9.5/10

Ron: 7/10

Sebastian: 5/10

Tobias: 4/10

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 2 and a high of 9.5.

Wiwi Jury verdict: 6.28/10

What do you think of this song? Share your own score and review below!

See all our Eurovision 2019 reviews and rankings

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Héctor
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Héctor

Good choice by Hungary though I preferred other options such as Fatal Error. “Az en apam” makes less impact than “Origo”, but it is still full of emotion. The wistle part is my fav, very catchy and adds some flavour to the instrumental. I don’t think Joci can reprise his 2017 success because this song has less staging potential, but I would be surprised if Hungary ends up not qualifying.

Hungary is in my 15th place.

13. Armenia (7)
14. Austria (7)
15. HUNGARY (7)
24. Latvia (6)
28. Finland (6)
29. Serbia (6)
32. Poland (5.75)
33. Ireland (5.5)
34. Denmark (5)

esc stan
Guest
esc stan

the juries rigged the results

Aisling
Guest
Aisling

Actually really like this song. His voice just hits you so hard. I especially like the simplicity of the ‘na na na’ part. I can see this qualifying.

Peters
Guest
Peters

Another one who should not win the national final. Just an okay song

oli
Guest
oli

I think this song is criminally underrated. It’s so unique, real and beautiful. I have it in my top 5.

Kris
Guest
Kris

This is not a very immediate song and I liked it better when it had not been revamped. The performance in the NF was a bit lacking. A 5/10. It does get televote support so adding a point but sandwiched between native language entries probably doesn’t let it stick out so reducing half a point. I’d think it has 55% shot at going to the final.

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

I love Joci and I want him to do very well. I love the song too.

LukeGallagher
Guest
LukeGallagher

For me this is the worst song in the competition, personally don’t believe any of the praise it’s reviving here

Roelof Meesters
Guest
Roelof Meesters

Origo was better, but that is compairing a good entry to an absolute 10/10. This one is good as well, and it’s also very underrated and underrstimated by the fans, I don’t see this missing the final and I predict that it will finish at the bottom of the left half. I love the whistling part, and I’m sad that it’s gone, but the violin works great as well. It does lack that punch to really stand out, but it’s a good enough entry to finish top 5 in the weaker semi.
8,5/10

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

There’s a reason why Hungary has landed right in the middle of my ranking. Their entry has quality enough to leave half of the contestants behind, but it lacks some sort of impact to beat the other half. The song is quite beautiful though, the lyrics do a good job on picturing the father/son connection. I miss the whistle that was cut off by the revamp. It was the most memorable thing about it and also a perfect fit to the wind analogy. Joci will give a heartfelt performance as usual, but “Origo” is a tough act to follow. 6.75/10

Colin
Guest
Colin

So far, our ratings have been pretty similar, with 1 point of difference +/-. The biggest discrepancy thus far is Latvia/Denmark, but even that is by 2 points or so. I’m sure we’ll disagree on some songs, but I think it’s cool that we see eye to eye on these few.

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

And even in our disagreements, we shared the same view of the songs, but one was touched by it and the wasn’t. I guess our biggest difference in terms of rating it will be the UK. You seem to like it a lot and I’m still on the fence about parts of it.

Colin
Guest
Colin

I do like UK, yeah. It’s still not in my top 10, but I like it. That’s one possibility for a big difference, but not the only one. For example, I really like Estonia and Romania, but last time I checked, you were fine with them, so discrepancies probably aren’t enormous. Also, I assume both of us might be in a minority when it comes to Cyprus and Switzerland. They are definitely decent, but I guess 90% of comments will put them in top 10. 🙂

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

Well, I’ve just seen that you gave Russia 1.5 more than me, so I guess it will between them, the UK and Estonia. Romania isso surrounding my top 10, we probably will give similar rates to it. And yeah, we’ll be in the minority concerning Cyprus and Switzerland. The later one especially, it’s a song that hasn’t grown an inch on me.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

Just a small note: I haven’t actually heard the re-vamp yet. I don’t know if it was ever officially released or not (since I don’t have it here).

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

I saw it here in the blog, Mask. The only remarkable thing about it is that they replaced the whistle for a violin. Maybe a hint that Joci will be accompanied by a musician on the stage? I think you’ll keep loving it when you listen to the revamp. It hasn’t changed much my opinion about it, I always liked it.

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Not quite as good as “Origo”, but definltely not bad. He’ll qualify, but he’ll probably finish in the middle of the pack. at least.

ESC LOU
Guest
ESC LOU

I like this as much as I liked Origo which is good! However I think the award for worst NF juries have to go to Hungary’s this year! There were some great entries in A Dal like Deniz, The Middletonz, and Yesyes and they were completely robbed however I have grown to really love and appreciate this song, it’s just a qualifier for me so that could change! 7.5/10

Nguyet Huynh
Guest
Nguyet Huynh

I actually kinda prefer this song to Origo. Of course Origo is perfect but Az en apam just has something that hits me so hard. I love the rhythm and espicially the meaningful lyrics and message: embracing your loved one before it’s too late. I have no words to describe how much I love this song. I will definitely listen to it after the contest (no matter which place it gets).
My top 10 for sure <3

Mese
Guest

Same! 🙂 You’ll see, he will finish much higher than the odds think. 🙂

Lisianthus
Guest
Lisianthus

Very underrated. This song is very relaxing, but not boring. 7.5/10

Darren
Guest
Darren

Not as good as “Origo” was in 2017, but I still like it, and I will always have a little soft spot in my heart for Joci Papai.
I hope this qualifies. I will be praying that it does. Hungary is always a great Eurovision country. 6/10

Meliris
Guest
Meliris

Not as good as Origo but still good, hope it qualifies, love his voice.(In my top 10)

Erasmus
Guest
Erasmus

I perfer Origo a lot more, but with that being siad this is really good too. But this needs good staging to sail through, But it won’t come lower than 11th place in semi. There’s not much I can say about this entry, I love Hungarian and I can feel the song and I prefer the live performance to studi version, which I never listen to. A good entry, but I expect something stronger next year Hungary! My score: 7 / 10 My Top so far: 9 – Armenia 8 – Austria 7,5 – Poland 7 – Hungary 6,5 –… Read more »

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

This is such a beautiful song that relies on very little musical content to work. There are a lot of songs in a “minor key” this year, but this one is particularly special. The feelings I get from playing this song are “warm and happy” rather than “sad and dramatic”. The key of E-Flat Minor is often used for soundtracks evoking memories, and this song recalls the memory of Joci’s father beautifully. The lyrics are very beautiful on their own – this is definitely a candidate for “lyrics of the year”. The only challenge for Joci is obvious – the… Read more »

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Guest
Mr. Vanilla Bean

That’s one of those entry that I have no opinion on. It’s just there and it’s not for me, so it’s neither good nor bad for me. It does feel like he came back weaker from 2017, though. Top 10 will be tough to crack.

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

It’s nice enough but as I’ve asked before, does anyone genuinely think that Joci was particularly wanting to get the ticket for Eurovision this year? I mean, this song just doesn’t strike as one that is trying to do well in any sort of competition. It’s just not structured that way.

Una
Guest
Una

Yes, I think he wanted the ticket for Eurovision. A returning artist with a very loved previous entry – Origo – now comes with a song on the “father” them but in Joci’s very own wonderful style. I think this song will do very well. Michael Schulte’s success from last year lead to an outstanding number of songs about one’s father: Hungary*winning song*, Romania and France second place (Laura Breatan and Seemone). Just the songs that I know of. There is nothing really strange about it in the sense that there is an override of styles/themes every year but this… Read more »

Rimig
Guest
Rimig

Similarly to Antranig, I was not a huge fan of “Origo”, but I do quite like “Az én apám”. Not that it is a perfect song, but there is something in Joci’s voice that immediately transports me to misterious lands. The music and his voice combines very well in this song and gets me into a sort of dreamy mood. Hungary is at spot number 11 in my personal list and I believe (and hope) it will qualify.

11. Hungary (7.0/10)
16. Ireland (6.5/10)
17. Armenia (6.5/10)
20. Austria (6.0/10)
21. Denmark (5.5/10)
27. Finland (5.0/10)
31. Serbia (4.5/10)
39. Latvia (2.5/10)
40. Poland (2.5/10)

Leo
Guest
Leo

Excessive verdict

Colin
Guest
Colin

What I find frustrating is that Hungary had stronger options like Gergo Szeker, Oliver Berkes, Rozina Patkai or The Middletonez. Their juries methodically destroyed Hungary’s chances of having a standout song. I like Joci, but this is merely the best one out of okay/decent bunch left for superfinals. I’m not sure that Hungarians would pick it if all 30 songs were on 100% televote. For example, Szeker had just as emotional song, but 500% musically more engaging.

Skiwalko
Guest

Sadly, I have to agree – A Dal is one of the national finals that needs the most to be changed. The simpler, the merrier, as Romania has shown both this and last year, the best system is just 50/50.

Una
Guest
Una

A 50/50 system is not the best for Romania. It may be for other countries but in Romania that wouldn’t work well even theoretically. Very, very few Romanians vote in Selectia Nationala. The actual number of votes is embarrassing. This year showed that the most popular performers get the highest number of votes. Almost the same as having 100% televote. The big problem in Romania this year was the concerted elements of popularity (understandable to some extent), strong religious identity (irrational) and homophobia (irrational hate and discrimination). A very sad state of affairs. Fortunately, from my point of view, the… Read more »

Jo.
Guest
Jo.

Szeker was their best option, but somehow they thought Joci could be successful again. Now, he’s borderline in a not so strong semifinal.

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

Another year that Hungary’s A Dal “experts” completed butchered the competition with their choices. I can’t remember the last time they put forward one of the top three songs in their NF, let alone the best.

Colin
Guest
Colin

Well, last year they pulled through both of my top favorites – Viszlat nyar and Atz mondtad. This year, not so much.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

A Dal is in a bad place right now, for sure. But, I am happy that Joci gets the chance to sing another song at Eurovision. He is an excellent artist.

Skiwalko
Guest

The music plods along very nicely, but what sells this song to me are the lyrics. Subtle, simple, but they really touch me. It seems Hungarians are good at writing songs about fathers. Yet, after a minute is becomes a bit… boring I guess? It doesn’t evolve, and for a listener, who doesn’t speak Hungarian, it may seem just dull and forgettable. I don’t know if that’s the comeback I was hoping for, but you gotta appreciate Hungarian language and authenticity, so 5.99/10 is about right, I think.

NickC
Guest
NickC

I loved Origo, but this one leaves me cold. Sorry., it is a 3 for me.

Colin
Guest
Colin

HUNGARY – I respect Joci’s songs for being authentic and emotional. His 2019 entry is one of the better written ones of the year. Nostalgia towards his father is true and lovely. The melody is pleasant, but doesn’t really have much going on. Some whistling is interesting, but the instrumental goes for way too long at parts. The last 45 seconds of the song are basically ”na na na na na na yo yo yo yo” alongside an atmospheric music. With some higher melodic impact, this could’ve been a really great song, but even as low-key as it is, it… Read more »

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

the comparisons with origo are inevitable n this song is several levels lower. a 6/10

Jo.
Guest
Jo.

Well, compared to Origo this is nothing, but in general it’s not a bad song. My guess is that Hungary and Serbia are kind of battling for that traditional ballad spot in the Grand Final, so bring it on!
6.5/10

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

I’m under the same impression.

Tibor
Guest
Tibor

This is pleasant but a little uneventful and slightly repetitive. Besides, I was never quite fond of Joci Pápai’s singing style. For my taste, it’s a little too whiny. The whistling doesn’t bother me – but the wordless chorus does a little bit, I prefer people to sing lyrics, and not just random syllables that’s a pet peeve of mine. Compared to what Hungary could have sent this year, this is a slight disappointment. If it was up to me, “Az én apám” would not qualify from semi 1, but I guess it will, although it’s borderline. Joci Pápai would… Read more »