It’s been a rough few years for Iceland, as the once successful Eurovision nation has been failing to make an impact at the contest. Over the last three years, the nation has found themselves stuck in the semi-finals with songs that we considered as fairly strong entries, but with the strength of the entries increasing over the last few years, Iceland just haven’t been able to keep up with the hot competition. This year, it’s up to Ari Ólafsson to turn things around with his inspirational tune, Our Choice. Will it be the choice of the voters, though?
It definitely wasn’t the strongest of national finals this year, and somewhat surprisingly we saw Ari win the competition – well at least, it was a surprise winner for me! Admittedly, it’s been that type of song that hasn’t really grabbed my attention. I’ve probably only listened to this once or twice, and perhaps not completely through, so although I vaguely know the melody, this is almost a first impressions review.
And that first impression of the first few seconds is a bit underwhelming. Immediately it feels dated, and something we perhaps would have heard at Eurovision a decade ago. Unfortunately, with some of the competing nations upping their game and sending more contemporary entries, in comparison you can hear that this doesn’t feel very original or modern. That’s not to say it’s a bad song. I don’t think it’s a bad song, but it’s just not at the same level as a long of the competing entries this year.
I think this is will have an audience though, as It’s definitely more of a Disney style, uplifting ballad that is certain to charm certain people. It helps that Ari himself is definitely a charming young man who has a Disney innocence to him. Although a bit cheesy, it is an uplifting tune, especially towards that final minute and he starts to hit some of the bigger notes of the song.
All aboard… the Ari Ari train!
This is far from Poison (sorry, had to make a pun there), this is a sugary sweet song that will have a few fans, but ultimately I don’t see this making it through to the final. Firstly, he’s in a rough semi with incredibly tough competition, and then being in second spot in the running order is really an unfortunate position for the young star.
Our rating: 6/10
If you support Iceland at Eurovision, make sure to vote for Ari in our poll! Watch his official video below, and follow our Eurovision 2018 playlist on Spotify.