Editorials & OpinionStockholm 2016

Xtra Review: Nicky Byrne – Sunlight (Ireland)

The rumours had been circulating for a while and this morning not only was it confirmed that former Westlife member Nicky Byrne would be representing Ireland at Eurovision 2016, but we got a song and music video too. Therefore Ireland is the 2nd country so have made their song for Stockholm public – here is what the Xtra team had to say about it:
Nathan: A vast improvement on anything sent in recent years but the production sounds cheap in places with some odd vocoding or vocal layering on occasion. Could see Ireland qualify but become lost in the Grand Final.
Ryan: Sounds completely Danish, but probably wouldn’t even make the super final if it were actually in DMGP. Not too bad an effort though really.
Simon: My, this is bland. But it’s fine. Not a winner, not a DNQ. It’s not just middle of the road, it is the white painted line, and there’s no attempt to produce anything that might surprise or intrigue the listener, so I wonder how they may try to translate this to a stage performance. Musically it is safe and predictable but it works. Lyrically it feels rather too simple to anglophone ears.
Wivian: Well, he’s cute and I like the studio version of his voice. But even in the studio version you can tell that this might be painful live, even if it’s quite an easy song to sing. Massive need of ghost singers me thinks! I like the fact he’s telling me to kiss who I gotta though…
Nick: It’s very Danish. Completely middle of the road, bland and forgettable. It’s inoffensive and there’s no one who could really say they hate it. So easily Ireland’s best in five years.
Aoife: I’m happy and impressed that RTÉ opted for an internal selection this year – we needed something to change up the system. Nicky Byne is a smart choice in my opinion! Being a well-known star across Europe, there already is quite a lot of hype around him – but of course we’ve seen before this being either a good or horrific thing. The song itself is good, my initial reaction was positive, however I do think it has that slightly older/typical “Eurovision track” feel to it that many other countries have surpassed. Nicky is a performer and used to huge arenas and stages, so I’m sure Globen won’t phase him! He’s the best chance we’ve had in the past few years and I’m sure his Irish charm will go a long way!
Peter: I can’t really fault the competence of this song, but competent is probably the nicest thing I can say about it. It’s reasonably catchy and has pretty good production, but it feels so cynically put together (the lyrics are really just a collection of buzz phrases strung together) that the end result fails to be exciting in any way. Hopefully Nicky’s experience will see this into the final though.
Rodrigo: The best entry Ireland has sent in at least 10 years. Which doesn’t say much, really.
What do you think of Ireland’s entry this year? Tweet us @escXtra and let us know!

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