Once again Ireland will use the “The Late Late Show” to choose its Eurovision song. On Friday 3 February, host Ryan Tubridy will guide viewers through the Eurosong 2023 special, which spans genres from dance-pop to rap. But before the show kicks off, the Wiwi Jury — our in-house team of music unprofessionals — is reviewing and rating the 6 competing songs. Our final song to review and score is Public Image Limited with “Hawaii”.
Wiwi Jury: Public Image Limited – Hawaii
Renske: Despite the group’s controversial history, “Hawaii” actually brings a tender story. The song is perhaps the most inventive of the bunch — it’s daring and risky, while also remaining quiet. Songs like this have faired very well at Eurovision in recent years. I also love the harmonious combination of lyrics and music: it’s mellow, soft and sultry. Although the song stays mostly flat for three minutes straight, it is the one that you will remember after listening all the six tracks.
Rick: The story of the song is very cute and I can definitely see some people liking the AlternativeRock/Indie-sound of it. But the big problem here is this: fans of Johnny Rotten and the Sex Pistols will be disappointed with a song like this, since he’s best known for energetic rock. This isn’t one of them. It’s also not fresh enough and Rotten doesn’t have the right attitude to represent Ireland, since he’s previously mocked the contest.
Ruxy: The song itself is a fine love song. The story of John writing this song for his wife who’s suffering with Alzheimer’s is indeed emotional. The song has an interesting instrumental, I love the drums. The atmosphere is calm and bright like a summer day but the lyrics are quite repetitive, creating the idea of a very linear and repetitive song. In my opinion, to take part in a show that you call ‘awful and disgusting’ (whether it’s just a PR strategy or not) is somehow disturbing. I can respect everyone’s opinion about the show, but I think that the most important element in any performance is the way in which the artist delivers that song to the audience, live. The performance of an artist can lift up or drag down a song. And I don’t see how an artist can take a performance seriously and give his very best on a stage that he considers awful and disgusting.
Tom: Ok. Do I respect Mr Rotten’s achievements to this point with the Sex Pistols, yes. Do I think that there is a market for his new track “Hawaii”, absolutely – we all love a bit of nostalgia. “Remembering the good old days” and this song does achieve that. I love that the song was written for his wife who unfortunately has Alzheimer’s. It’s a very honest and touching tribute. I also enjoy the fact that the song does feel like calm waves on a beach in Hawaii. There are positives. However, to be kind, it is just not for me. Taking what Mr Rotten has said and the rotten things about the contest completely out of the equation, it is not a great song. Repetition can work for some songs, it doesn’t for this – it is sleep inducing. The quality of the singing is also questionable, even in the studio cut. If anyone else without his past credentials sent this song in, it wouldn’t see the light of day.
Not for me.
William: This is the most sincere song of the bunch — John is opening up about the sadness of Alzheimers. His plea for his wife to remember their time in Hawaii is gut-wrenching and real. Musically, however, it’s a bit too plodding. To keep viewers watching this needs to feel more dynamic.
- Connolly – “Midnight Summer Night” Score: 7.5
- Adgy – “Too Good For Your Love” Score: 7.4
- Leila Jane – “Wild” Score: 6.8
- K Muni & ND – “Down In The Rain” Score 6.2
- Wild Youth – “We Are One” Score: 6
- Public Image Limited – “Hawaii” Score: 4
What do you think of “Hawaii”? Do you think it is good enough to represent Ireland at Eurovision? Let us know in the comments.