The Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — continues to rate and review the 41 competing entries of Eurovision 2019. Next we head to Moldova where Anna Odobescu has “Stay”. Did the song make us want to linger? Read on to find out!

Anna Odobescu – “Stay”

“Stay” reviews

William: Structurally this song is built on two pillars: key changes, of which there are many, and clichés  — from “hold on” to “be strong” to “a fire burning inside.” And that might explain why I absolutely love it. There’s something comforting about the predictability of this — like the rhyming of “now or never” with “forever”. While it may have come a decade too late to make an impact at Eurovision, Anna really sells it with her powerhouse vocals and undeniable stage presence. Now crank up the wind machine and let’s party like it’s 2009!

Score: 6/10

Julian: Moldova brings a good song to Eurovision – if it was selected 10 years before. As Anna is a really good performer with a beautiful voice, the song itself is a big meh. I have to say that she brings her emotions into life though. But the song does not go anywhere and the clichéd “Eurovision key change” does not make it any better.

Score: 3.5/10

Antranig: Moldova set a high benchmark in 2017 and 2018 and it was always going to be difficult to live up to it. Mixing things up with a solid ballad was probably a wise idea, rather than trying to replicate their recent success. “Stay” is an enjoyable song performed by a talented vocalist. It is missing some wow factor or a big moment but that can be rectified with staging. It may not meet the heights of 2017 but Moldova can be proud of their entry.

Score: 6/10

Josh: Anna has a good voice and the song has a modern sound that gets you to at least listen to it for three minutes. However, that’s about all that can be said. There is nothing here that really stands out and puts her above anyone else. The message of the song is basic and comes across as cliché, and there are so many places where the English lyrics just sound clunky and over-written (almost making me wish the song was in Moldovan, but it’s hard to see that helping this). Maybe next year, Moldova.

Score: 3/10

Pablo: “Stay” was objectively the best song in its national selection by far. That is not a good thing. “Fire”, “burning”, “together”, “forever”, “high”, “to the sky” — if you’re playing love ballad cliché word bingo, you would win big with Moldova’s song. It does have a nice buildup and instrumentation, but it is not packaged well enough to avoid that heard-before feeling. From a country that has previously sent happy and joyous entries, this feels off-brand, and not in an innovative way.

Score: 4/10

Renske: After a few years of being the joke entry again, Moldova is serving us classic Eurovision ballad this year. “Stay” reached up to the heights of “O mie” and is flawlessly sung by Anna, whose vocals are really impressive. You can feel Anna’s musicality and emotion through every word she is singing. However, the song lacks something special to stand out from all other classical ballads in this year’s contest.

Score: 6/10

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

Angus: 6/10

Anthony: 8/10

Antony: 5/10

Barnabas: 4/10

Bernardo: 5/10

Calvin: 4.5/10

Chris: 4.5/10

Deban: 6/10

Essi: 5/10

Florian: 2.5/10

Izhar: 4.5/10

Jack: 3.5/10

Jonathan: 4.5/10

Kristin: 4/10

Lucy: 6/10

Luis: 3.5/10

Lukas: 5.5/10

Mikhail: 1.5/10

Oliver: 6/10

Robyn: 4.5/10

Ron: 6/10

Sebastian: 5.5/10

Tobias: 4.5/10

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 1.5 and a high of 8.

Wiwi Jury verdict: 4.78/10

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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Peters
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Peters

I probably the only one who likes this. My guilty pleasure this year. So dated but so catchy.

Sabrina
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Sabrina

It goes easy on the ears, but it’s probably the most generic entry of 2019. Anna’s vocals are good and she’s a solid live performer. The track is well produced and does its best to hide its weaknesses. But if you pay attention, you’ll see the lyrics are a huge collage of clichés and that some of them don’t even go together (if it’s forever, it’s not “now or never”). Not mentioning that the bridge is basically an excuse for the singer to show off. It will be interesting to see if Moldova can make it work with staging. 4/10

Purple Mask
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Purple Mask

Thanks Sabrina. Glad it wasn’t your last place. 😀

Sabrina
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Sabrina

But will you like my last place? 😀

Rimig
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Rimig

Robyn, my comment is, for some reason, not passing the filters. Could you check it, please?

Geo
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Geo

Moldova has selected a good voice but with a weak, old fashioned song . It won’t qualify

Kkar
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Kkar

Antranig gave 6 to this but 4.5 to Greece, this dude is a joke

Briekimchi
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Briekimchi

This is Breathlessly 2.0.
There is a passable (not particularly good) singer having a go at a song that doesn’t really show off any vocal power, yet has nothing else to save it. Flat and unambitious, it does make you wonder if Moldova are aiming for an ambitious 15th place in their semi final.

Héctor
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Héctor

Moldova always brings to the table dated songs, but sometimes they are at least enjoyable (2017 was the exception, Sunstroke did it great). They had better and more modern songs in O Melodie pentru Europa, but they decided to go with a traditional Eurovision-style ballad. I mean, what would be Eurovision without a female power ballad? But this is too cheesy, bland, boring and dated. Poor Anna has the look and the voice, but the song is just a big NO. Not even a good staging can save it this time like last year. Would be very very surprised if… Read more »

Purple Mask
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Purple Mask

In an earlier comment, I mentioned how there were a lot of songs in minor keys this year. Well here we have Moldova’s song, which starts in C minor, then modulates to-and-from E-flat minor back to C minor, and then raises a tone to D minor for the reprise. That’s a lot of “sad” music, but I actually agree with William on this one. For people of a certain age, we MISS this sort of writing. Despite being a format that’s tired and outdated, this song delivers it so predictably that it becomes easy to enjoy it with “no strings… Read more »

Colin
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Colin

I’ll agree with you on the nostalgia aspect of it. I am only in my early 30s, yet I already miss the big, elaborated ballad choruses. Modern songs tend to keep them short and repetitive, something which isn’t always the best idea. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I’d describe Stay as a musical equivalent to a Lifetime movie – safe, very predictable, cheesy and dramatic. You might enjoy it as something casual and fun, but then move on to something of more substance. For me, it’s not the structure (which I actually enjoy), but the lack of inspiration for… Read more »

Purple Mask
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Purple Mask

Yep, all agreed. Also agreed that “Breathlessly” from Malta was better in comparison. (And Mr. Vanilla Bean also accurately points out why this was the case, above. You all know so much about these songs; it’s amazing.)

Roelof Meesters
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Roelof Meesters

Not the worst song of the year, but I don’t think this even has a 5% chance at qualifying from SF 2, Anna is a great vocalist, and the song does have some qualities, but that shouldn’t be what you’re going for after bringing 2 amazing top-10 entries. My heart still beats for Ce Adriane Cilenante. 3,5/10

Rimig
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Rimig

I think she has a very nice voice during most of the song and the instrumentals are nothing special but pleasant to listen to. But the lyrics are sooo cliché! Just hearing that “stay”, “way”, “together”, “forever” gives me shivers (in a bad way, of course). I mean… come on! Who wrote this genialty?! (Btw, the first 5 piano notes are from Ukraine’s 2013 entry “Gravity”). Moldova is my number 36 and there is no way this will go through to the final.. 2. Greece (9.0/10) 8. Russia (7.5/10) 10. Estonia (7.0/10) 11. Hungary (7.0/10) 12. Romania (7.0/10) 16. Ireland… Read more »

ESC LOU
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ESC LOU

I really don’t mind this entry, although I do see how it’s generic and dated. 6/10

Jo.
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Jo.

3/10 and bye bye

Weißbrot
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Weißbrot

Yeah no, this might be my last place this year… I have nothing nice to say, except for the fact that Anna is a great singer. Did that help Ari Olafson last year? Nope. It’s bland, it’s dated, it has nothing going for it. I’m sorry but this has to be a 2/10

Briekimchi
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Briekimchi

Is she a great singer though? I have been hearing that a lot about this. Where in the song is she singing greatly? At least, with Ari, his talent was absolutely obvious in spite of the song. Can you imagine Anna doing justice to a better song?

Una
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Una

Anna’s voice is the only thing good about this entry. The message+clichés+melody+sound are the worst example for an obsolete and generic and empty kind of love ballad in Eurovision. I don’t see this song qualifying from the semi. Nothing can save it, not even some points from Romania and maybe some from Sweden. Swedish composers will get some points because we know, it’s Sweden. And why Sweden? I know this is a controversial subject but come on. As if Moldova or Romania or a former Soviet country didn’t have enough talent. I’d give this entry a 0 but. I give… Read more »

Colin
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Colin

MOLDOVA – I’m usually not bothered with a song being dated. I love a good classical ballad. However, this ain’t one. It’s so predictable that I basically knew every rhyme before I heard it. It’s pleasant and elegant enough to listen to it, but it offers no innovations or deep emotional investment. Among Moldovan 28 hopefuls, this is easily a top 5 song (although, ironically, it would’ve been a hoot having one of these trainwrecks selected), but on actual ESC, the standards are higher. I can enjoy it in a cheesy way, as a reminder of how ESC ballads used… Read more »

NickC
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NickC

Here is your sacrificial lamb, Sabrina.

Purple Mask
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Purple Mask

Last place? Owh dear 🙁

Colin
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Colin

Moldova is not her last. It’s either Montenegro or Croatia. I am quite interested on how my score will compare to hers on Stay.

NickC
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NickC

Croatia is not that bad….Montenegro, however….

Sabrina
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Sabrina

This is my 38th, but with the same grade as my 39th. And we finally shared the exactly same score about an entry, Colin! Though I must admit I complicate things by using 0.25 gaps. 😛

Sabrina
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Sabrina

Well, Nick, it isn’t THE sacrificial lamb, but it’s one of them for sure. It’s one of the five songs that got less than 5 for me. But the curious thing about this one is that back when I hasn’t paid real attention to it, I hasn’t disliked much about it. So first time viewers maybe won’t be as judgemental.

Colin
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Colin

For me, it’s six or seven songs with a score under average (Latvia, Moldova, Finland and Belarus obviously being four of them).
One of the reasons why Stay didn’t seem as bad at first was that it was sorrounded by some of the most inept NF entries that exist. Here, it’s between 22 and She Got Me. While not brilliant themselves, they do pull the level of quality a few notches up.

Sabrina
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Sabrina

Finland managed to get a 5 from me, it’s my 36th. And you know Latvia pleases me enough with their gorgeous presentation. Switzerland and Ireland aren’t well ranked in my personal taste, but I believe both do with they intend to do with more accuracy and less weaknesses than Moldova, I would say. “She Got Me” is slick and radiofriendly and “22” is a basic song, but very enjoyable to my ears, especially because of Sarah’s voice.

Skiwalko
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Skiwalko

I feel so sorry for her, she doesn’t deserve such a trainwreck of a song. It feels like it was written by some Ballad AI more than a real human being.

Una
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Una

She chose to song this song.

CookyMonzta
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CookyMonzta

I wouldn’t exactly call it a trainwreck. Bland, yes; but trainwreck, no.

Polegend Godgarina
Guest

odobexcuse me ! it’s generic but it’s inoffensive unlike certain others

Makis
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Makis

It’s a good song, but they had it coming…

Alex
Guest
Alex

Anna deserves to sing at Eurovision, but with a much better song than this. Stay has no sense of subtlety and the lyrics are beyond generic.

The fact that Moldova didn’t have enough quality songs to hold its originally planned semifinal should be a cause for concern for the country’s TV station.

Una
Guest
Una

Then do an internal selection. I don’t know if that would work. I know for sure an internal selection would not work for Romania, that’s a fact. I have no idea how things work in Moldova. I think it’s a big shame that a broadcaster spends that money for a selection show – maybe it’s just something to fill in their TV programming and they do it anyway. At least for this year.

Nicky91
Guest
Nicky91

nice song, and anna is a good singer

maybe a bit outdated but it is still better than what nq’d for Moldova, that awful Lidia in 2016 falling stars, or the train wreck in 2015 i want your love

Kris
Guest
Kris

I actually didn’t dislike their 2015 or 2016 entry
The 2015 dong could have qualified had it not been first in the running order

Tibor
Guest
Tibor

Anna Odobescu can sing and this entry is not at all unpleasant to listen to, yet it doesn’t have the production values it would need to make such a rather pedestrian melody stand out from the crowd. The backing track sounds cheap and a tad old-fashioned, her vocal isn’t particularly powerful during the chorus, there’s some kind of layering effect with the backing vocals going on that for their part sound very altered and artificial, I’m not even sure if they’re real voices, because even on headphones I cannot hear them properly. Also the music video with its “even newly… Read more »

Kris
Guest
Kris

Yeah , it’s just that this song is non-competitive. It’s not bad.

tim
Guest
tim

In my perfect world, Moldova would qualify, and Sweden not. I don’t hate Sweden, but it seems it’s bad for a country to qualify all the time. (I know…Anna…). Sweden needs a refresh. Their Mello became so bad that they will not qualify soon, but it’s better sooner than later.

Una
Guest
Una

I think Sweden in general have very good quality music. Even Swedish rejects that participated for Denmark got very good placing in 2010 and 2018 AFAIR. But they do get a lot of help from the Nordic bloc (and others because it’s Sweden), yet people criticize Romania and Moldova, Cyprus and Greece for giving each other high points regardless of the quality of the song, performance, staging etc.
Sweden will qualify this year (the song and performer have merits), Moldova won’t.

keith mawson
Guest
keith mawson

i love john’s song but i prefer jon henryk . Sweden needs to get away from cheesy pop and be more authentic,

keith mawson
Guest
keith mawson

I thought it was a bit *footballers wives * drama

Tibor
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Tibor

That’s also a possibility. But is the guy stylish enough to be a footballer … ?

tim
Guest
tim

Thank you for letting us know you have nothing to say. Useful contribution.

tim
Guest
tim

“nothing to say about it” (your words).
Stop being so childish, it’s all right to be wrong sometimes.
Silly boy!

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

Ah, the sound of silence is speaking volumes. 😛
But alternatively I should probably take a cue from Chingiz.

Kris
Guest
Kris

The lady can sing . She has a good voice . Sadly the song is so set in the past that it won’t make anyone look up . But it’s not hurtful to my ears so I’ll give it that. A 4/10. The poor running order reduces a point and the lack of public support reduces 2 points. This song has 10% chances to qualify.

tim
Guest
tim

The chorus has cliches rhymes, but this doesn’t deserve to stay in semi, just like Sunstroke and Doredo’s don’t deserve to be called joke entries.
About Eurovision Look Alike
Romy Schneider = Anna Odobescu
Leo Messi = Sergey Lazarev

keith mawson
Guest
keith mawson

Sunstroke and Doredo’s were amazing entries

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Aye. This one, I’m afraid, doesn’t quite measure up to those two.