The Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — continues to rate and review the 41 competing entries of Eurovision 2019. Next we turn to the United Kingdom, where Michael Rice has “Bigger Than Us”. Were we impressed by the size? Read on to find out!
Michael Rice – “Bigger Than Us”
“Bigger Than Us”
Lucy: Holy power ballad, Batman! We have a fab British entry being sung by someone who really loves the contest through and through! As soon as the songs for Eurovision: You Decide were released, it was pretty clear Michael Rice would walk the competition and go to Telleraveev. “Bigger Than Us” is emphatic, stirring and is sung so well by Michael. His voice has similar qualities to James Arthur’s but has a bigger (…bigger, biggerrrrr) appeal to a wider audience – it’s less gravelly and has a more instant impact. The fact he is so ridiculously likeable is a bonus. Is he going to win Eurovision? Probably not, but the UK have a good track record of staging in recent years and with the best song the BBC have dealt out in a decade or more, a top five could be possible. And hey, the UK could use something like this right about now.
Angus: Let me be clear. Michael can sing with a capital S and his positive outlook on Eurovision is to be commended in a UK representative in the 21st century. Alas, “Bigger Than Us” is a ballad-by-numbers. To his credit, Michael milks what he has been given for all it is worth. He has vocal runs that put Dami Im to shame, nails every note and unlike others performers in this year’s lineup, the boy can sing the falsetto notes when required. “Bigger Than Us” does have a memorable hook, but that’s only because the chorus is bludgeons you into submission through repetition. Michael is fantastic and were this The Voice he’d be the winner without doubt. But this is a song contest and as in years gone by, the UK song just isn’t up to scratch.
Barnabas: “Bigger Than Us” was clearly the best choice of what the revamped “You Decide” had to offer, and the song came to life in Michael’s interpretation. It’s not an outstanding song, but with a good staging (see Lucie Jones in 2017) it can be a step in the right direction after the disaster “Storm” was last year.
Ron: “Bigger Than Us” might be a bit generic — even its singer admits it — but its impact is bigger… much bigger. It’s an anthem. Michael Rice is serving it with all of his power (although there are some places for improvement) and make us all clap, sing along and feel hopeful for some good times. Such a feel-good song that leaves you with a smile. I hope the UK will manage to make it to the middle of the scoreboard in Tel Aviv with this one.
Deban: “Bigger Than Us” is at best a TV show winner’s single that manages to top the chart for a week. However, in this format, we don’t have the benefit of seeing Michael emerge from 14 live shows. Mr Rice has a decent voice, but he also bears a strong tendency to overdo it on stage. He needs a measured but emotionally charged approach to belting out this generic pop ballad.
Florian: First of all, shoutout to Laurell Barker for penning another Eurovision entry! Having Sweden’s John Lundvik on the team is also another plus for this act. While it didn’t connect with me at first, this is a solid entry. Michael Rice is known for his good vocal delivery and surely he won’t let his fans down in Tel Aviv. This needs some work with regard to the staging to add new refreshing elements. If that happens, this could do better than expected.
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 3 and a high of 9.
Wiwi Jury verdict: 5.83/10
What do you think of this song? Share your own score and review below!