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Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury #7 Written by on May 4, 2012 | 11 Comments

With the Big 5 and Azerbaijan to come in the last regular Juke Box Jury round next week, it’s time for the fan favourite to step in front of the judges to be judged as a hit, a miss, or a maybe.

And once we’ve listened to Rambo Amadeus, we’ll finally get around to giving Sweden’s Loreen a spin.

Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury #7
with Karina Westerman and Steven Newby

Israel: Time, by Izabo.
Bosnia & Herzegovina: Korake Ti Znam, by Maya Sar.
Montenegro: Euro Neuro, by Rambo Amadeus.
Portugal: Vida Minha, by Filipa Sousa.
Sweden: Euphoria, by Loreen.

Don’t miss an episode of this year’s Juke Box Jury (or any of The Unofficial Eurovision Podcast episodes) by subscribing to the RSS feed dedicated to the podcasts. iTunes users can find us in the iTunes Store and get the show automatically downloaded to your computer.

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About The Author: Ewan Spence

British Academy (BAFTA) nominated broadcaster and writer Ewan Spence is the voice behind The Unofficial Eurovision Song Contest Podcast and one of the driving forces behind ESC Insight. Having had an online presence since 1994, he is a noted commentator around the intersection of the media, internet, technology, mobility and how it affects us all. Based in Edinburgh, Scotland, his work has appeared on the BBC, The Stage, STV, and The Times. You can follow Ewan on Twitter (@ewan) and Facebook (

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11 responses to “Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury #7”

  1. Miss Purple says:

    I like Israel’s song, the verse does sound a bit like that “Dream Lover” song from the ’50s, but it doesn’t bother me because it’s cheery. I’m interested in how they’re going to stage it…

    I actually like Bosnia’s song, I know it’s not as good as last year’s song (which was my favourite in 2011) but it’s a nice little song with a lovely singer. And I don’t understand how some ‘experts’ are saying this won’t qualify, OF COURSE IT WILL, ARE YOU INSANE?! It’s very jury friendly, it’s got a great draw, and it’s Bosnia.

    Steven’s reaction to Montenegro was very similar to my reaction upon first listening, my brain ceased to function for a good while afterwards! D:

    Portugal’s song is classy and it’s very well performed, but I fear it will get drowned out by the other ballads in semi 2 and sink without trace, which would be a shame.

    And count me in on the Euphoria fanwank bandwagon! As soon as I saw it in the semi of Melodifestivalen I didn’t even want to hear the other songs, I thought this HAD to go to Eurovision. I can understand people not getting the fuss over it and I don’t expect everyone to be falling over themselves over the song, but the ‘haters’ who want to see it fail just because it’s the fan favourite are actually starting to annoy me a great deal.

  2. TK says:

    In regards to ‘Euphoria’ and how it fared with the international juries at Melodifestivalen, yes, it was a two-horse race between ‘Amazing’, but at the end of the count, ‘Euphoria’ came out on top with 114 points. It scored with every jury whereas ‘Amazing’ was looked over once or twice. I believe ‘Euphoria’ may well score similarly with the juries at Eurovision on account of how contemporary it is, and paired with that stunning performance, how could it not?

    I also believe it will go on to become a huge commercial hit after the Song Contest. It has already seen huge success on iTunes in Finland, Estonia, Spain and a bunch of other countries (even making it the soundtrack of a ‘Gossip Girl’ ad) without any kind of promotion. I would imagine a high profile performance on the Eurovision stage would be enough to send ‘Euphoria’ into the charts across the continent.

    Well, that was my two (rather long-winded) cents. Cheers for the Juke Box Jury! I really enjoy listening to fellow Eurovision fans analyse and dissect the entries. I do it myself, except in my head, because no one in my circle knows Eurovision!

  3. Kate says:

    Been a lurker for a while, and got introduced to this site through the influence of my dear friend Sam Ross. First, wanted to say, I love Juke Box Jury, so thanks for the excellent commentary!

    I totally agree with you about Bosnia and Herzegovina and Sweden. Israel is, well, it has clowns in their official video, and I think this has permanently ruined it for me, This is of course my own dislike of clowns, and not their fault at all. Just unfortunate there.

    However, I do not agree with the majority on Montenegro. I think this song is a hilarious, tongue in cheek look at eastern European countries participation in Eurovision in general (in addition to having one of my favorite videos for a Eurovision songs in recent memory). As has been noted before, many of the former soviet republics have been looking to Eurovision as a way to make themselves more part of the “European” experience, to legitimize their image as a western country. This song takes that and exposes it, by presenting a song about the desperation of the same countries to join the Euro Zone (Montenegro, through Rambo singing “Give me chance to refinance” as a part of the chorus”). It combines the economic effort with the cultural effort of eastern Europe to reinvent themselves, and it does so in a deflating way. Brilliant (though mean).

    In addition, It is awesome that he is actually, as the first song in the content (yay for draw order!), making people face the Euro Crisis. I well know that this song will go nowhere, as people will sit down to the television looking for some nice ballads and then have this thrown at them, I hope it makes some people squirm, and some throw things, and maybe a few, just a few, think. Then again, outside of Eurovision, I generally listen to Black Metal, so, I am, admittedly, strange, and tend to not get bothered by oddness (or frog like signing!) 🙂

  4. Miss Purple says:

    I just thought of something related to your Portugal/Star Trek film theory, I think Belgium have a similar split personality thing going on in recent years: Even-numbered years (when the Flemish broadcaster is in charge) they send something at least half-decent, odd-numbered years (when the Walloon broadcaster is in charge) tend to be rubbish (except for Sanomi, but that was 9 years ago!)

  5. arcus says:

    What was that woman talking about re: Euphoria not being that popular with international juries in MF?

    Loreen won the international jury vote with 6 x 12s, 3 x 10s and 2 x 6s………….lol

  6. Damien says:

    I think Ewan just likes going against the grain, and Karina was well off the mark saying that the international juries weren’t hot on Loreen. She easily won the voting.

    Sweden will win Eurovision.

  7. Zolan says:

    @Ewan. See what happens when you pre-announce the fan favourite? Either everyone’s moved to Eastern Kiribati, or they’ve been constantly refreshing the page in anticipation 🙂

    Israel: Yes, good. Not a favourite, but I like they way the lyrics work, and the lead has a very striking and engaging stage presence, not unlike Dino last year.

    BiH: I like the way they submit different styles each year, and always to the highest standard.
    Really lovely and intricate when listening to it, but even now after several listens I struggle to remember it, and have to use little mnemonic tricks. The flute is a big mistake that I think undermines the song’s best qualities. It also sounds more Western than Balkan to me.

    Montenegro: Rambo has got his groove on. I can dig it.
    I really love that this is the very first entry to be shown.
    (Maybe Kate is a kindred spirit) Instead of supplying a prefabricated soapbox with which to rationalize our opinions and congratulate ourselves, this leaves us to fend for ourselves. Is it clever and musically sophisticated, or just the illusion of art? Politically insightful, or naive? etc. Either choice leaves us exposed, and people hate that. I don’t care if it qualifies, that is enough. Staging and performance? No idea.

    Portugal: Just to be different, I’ll start with criticism. Even more non-memorable than BiH, and not remotely moving even while listening to it. I get the impression that “Fado” means “make the verse as earnest as the chorus, and the chorus are lively as the verse”. I don’t get it at all.
    Now I’ll get to the obligatory niceties. I do very much appreciate that they remain true to their own cultural values, but also something I’ve not read elsewhere, that they never send spiteful or petulant “joke” entries in response to poor results.

    Sweden Oh no, it’s finally happened. I really like the fan favourite. I could go on about what impresses me, and I could mention a few things that seem a little naff, but it would be too redundant even for me.

    @Miss Purple: Interesting info on Belgium. I didn’t realise they did it like that.

  8. Shai says:

    Israel – An absolutely dark horse. Sounds different from any song in this year contest.Has a unique sounds and everyone can find something to relate to. Indy-pop, retro, just name it and you’ll be spot on.A song that make you want to vote or it.

    Sweden-It’s a shame you don’t check your facts.What you have seen in MF, will not be what you will see on Eurovision stage.One change has already been announced-There will be 3 backing singer on stage with Loreen,a change forced by Eurovision rules. It means that the staging of the song will need to have changes to make sure it will not harm the song.
    I am also not agreeing on your assumption that this could be a game changer for Eurovision,should it win. They said the same on Finland 2006, needles to say it never happened.

    Sweden has sent in the past a more accessible songs to the contest. The latest of them was last year and he came only 3rd. Euphoria is the least accessible song Sweden has sent in the last 5 years and I can’t see it fairing better than last year attempt.I have also issues with how this is built, musically.Awkward will be the right term to describe it.

  9. TK says:

    On top of having three backing singers, Christer announced that SVT are in the process of designing a new kind of platform/podium for Loreen. Apparently its going to be very unique, constructed in Sweden for rehearsals before being shipped to Baku.

    Furthermore, it seems like we also have a commercial hit on our hands, with ‘Euphoria’ charting in no less that 14 countries, hitting the Number 1 spot in four of them. And this without a scrap of promotion!

  10. Shai says:

    we will all see and know how it looks and sounds in about 10 days.

  11. Zolan says:

    Could this be the start of a new pattern? This time next year could we find ourselves discussing what Sweden’s latest prop will be?

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