Oh. Never mind then.
Alicja Szemplińska won the 2019 season of The Voice of Poland. Her song “Empire” is by pop singer Patryk Kumór and songwriters Dominic Buczkowski-Wojtaszek, Frazer Mac, and Laurell Barker. Laurell collaborated with Frazer on the 2019 Swiss entry “She Got Me” and co-wrote the German entry “Sisters” and the United Kingdom entry “Bigger Than Us.” She also has two songs at this year’s Melodifestivalen. We need to add her to our Songwriters page.
There is nothing in particular wrong with the song or with the singer. However, we feel like they are not a good fit for each other. Alicja is only 17 years old, so it’s kind of hard for us to believe the story she’s telling in the song. Teenagers in love are always dramatic, to be sure, but the lyrics track older than that. Although maybe that’s because the line “Like a bird to a pane of glass” reminds us of Anouk’s “Birds.”
Anyway, although Alicja has a beautiful, mature voice, her performance did not elevate “Empires.” There was no depth, just some big notes that show off her potential.
And yet, it’s hard for us to be completely dismissive. That’s partly because we feel churlish criticizing a teenager who has won two televised singing competitions within the span of four months. But there is also the fact that Szansa na sukces was held in a small studio space, which dampened any potential for “Empire” to show off its full grandiosity. Give Alicja a big room and some time to live with “Empire” and it may work out just fine. She’s got the raw goods, and there is time to refine it.