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 Norway where the trio KEiiNO has “Spirit in the Sky”. Did the spirit move us? Read on to find out!
KEiiNO – “Spirit in the Sky”
“Spirit in the Sky” reviews
Oliver: This was my favourite in the national final and it shall take that spot in the main contest too. KEiiNO and “Spirit in the Sky” is everything that I have dreamed from Norway: a modern pop song enthused with Sami elements. Everything about this entry is perfect in my books — the verses, the pre-chorus, the chorus, joiking: everything. It is fantastically produced with excellent transitions between each section of the song and to top it all off, it is performed by three impeccable vocalists. What could be better?
Sebastian: With three strong, proven vocalists on stage, “Spirit in the Sky” seems like an obvious winning performance on paper. But there’s something not quite cohesive about this package. At times, the track feels too cluttered vocally, with too much of a disjoint between the two main vocalists. And while the inclusion of Sami is respectable and clever, it’s difficult to recreate the power that the Sami vocals have on the recorded track, almost sounding hollow on stage. As the old adage goes – two is a company, but three is a crowd.
Anthony: Although I’m delighted with Norway’s decision, the fact that KEiiNO struggled with the international juries is a cause for concern. I get that “Spirit in the Sky” is built on the Sami culture, but Fred’s joik solo sticks out like a sore thumb and could baffle casual Eurovision viewers. And they definitely need to sort out their staging as their Melodi Grand Prix version was woefully underwhelming.
Julian: This year, I fear that Norway is a country that it is a favourite in the Eurovision bubble but nothing more — and that might lead into a non-qualifier. I really love the song and I get the hype which the song definitely deserves. “Spirit in the Sky” was the best decision Norway could make and I’m glad it represents its country. I just think that the hype won’t spread to enough people. Add more polar lights and less dancers and I really hope that Norway can reach a top position they deserve.
Tobias: “Spirit In The Sky” is typical Europop, cheesy but so damn catchy! That’s the beauty with this kind of genre and that’s what people tend to like in Eurovision and so do I. You only have three minutes to stand out and get people’s attention and you need to have something memorable and KEiiNO is not an exception. The joik and the chorus get stuck in your head immediately and that’s the essence to do well in Eurovision. I like the combo of having three so different singers who each, on an individual level, add some excitement and different texture to the song and keep my interest during the three minutes. I think this will do really well in Eurovision. Euro-pop has been reborn!
Luis: Norway brings the ultimate guilty pleasure of the year, and I’m here for it. “Spirit in the Sky” is an unashamed kitsch delight, a formulaic Euro-pop entry, and it’s fantastic that it’s made it to the Eurovision 2019 line up. KEiiNO’s proposal is an amazing throwback to the 2000s decade, where people went out there at Eurovision and when the quality of the song wasn’t the most important thing of the entry. “Spirit in the Sky” is a delicious hot mess, which hopefully will get the audience outside the Eurovision bubble drawn into the party and not put them off. PS: Get rid of the interpretative dancers, thank you.
In the Wiwi Jury we have 29 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 10.
Wiwi Jury verdict: 7.7/10
What do you think of this song? Share your own score and review below!