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Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury #8 Written by on May 7, 2014 | 9 Comments

Well, it’s been rather a busy day here at Eurovision 2014, but we’ve not (quite) forgotten about Juke Box Jury. Pushed back to avoid the first semi-final, here come the Big Five and our hosts Denmark with the chance of being rated Hit, Miss, or Maybe.

Mind you, when the judges keep getting called away to vista the British Ambassador, the show might need some smart editing…

Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury #8
with Samantha Ross and Steven Newby (with pinch hitting from Debbie O’Hare)

Spain: Dancing In The Rain, by Ruth Lorenzo
Cliché Love Song, by Basim
Is It Right, By Elaiza
La Mia Citta, by Emma Marrone
Moustache, by Twin Twin
United Kingdom:
Children of the Universe, by Molly

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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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9 responses to “Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury #8”

  1. Spain: HIT. This will be top 5 as long as Ruth doesn’t over-sing and crouch into a small ball as she has tended to do. It will depend on the exact draw but second half is good. It might win but I think it will just miss out – it might depend upon how well she does with the juries…

    Denmark: HIT. This will be top 5 as it is so blooming catchy and if he sings and performs like the NF, this could win especially as he has 23rd position. This will stick in everyone’s heads – not sure whether it will be a jury hit though…

    Germany: MISS. The girls are loving being there but it goes nowhere, it is competently sung but it doesn’t stand out from the crowd and I think it will be on the right hand side of the scoreboard…

    Italy: MAYBE. Emma’s live performances vocally have been poor up to the last rehearsal where it was not bad at all, she looked great and worked the stage big time. This will not trouble the favourites but it might now get into the top 10…


  2. Sorry, pressed the submit button too early!

    FRANCE: MISS. They are great fun and it will go down well in the Arena but the staging looks out of place in the vastness of the B&W. This looks far better in small clubs. I think it might scrape the left hand side of the table but it will only get 3s and 4s…

    UK: HIT. There will be a certain amount of bias with this review, being a Brit but this will be top 5 at least and with a favourable wind, could win! Everything seems to be slotting into place, the second half of the draw, the professionalism shown by Molly on stage and interviews, her growing confidence – if she gets a 16-18th slot to sing, the gods are on the UK’s side!

  3. Hans-Henning says:

    Germany: The whole Wildcard concert thing was a mess, it seemed that the NDR picked the songs and artists randomly and Elaiza was one of the better picks. Then they got an extra week of promotion and where carried through to win the final, because nobody wanted Santiano or Unheilig to win. Given the placing in the running order it could very well be fighting for the last spot. And if it doesn’t do well you be seeing Germany’s 2015 entry announce the points this year. MISS

    Denmark: Frankly I’m amazed how they manage to send every year something that is clearly sailing in the shadows of current chart successes. MAYBE with minus

    Spain: After the shouting contest that was the Spanish final, the look on Ruth’s face when they told that she was the winner was a million bucks! MAYBE with a plus

    France: The french final reminded me of the German finals in 2006/2007 where each time the novelty act won. MISS with a plus

    Italy: When it became clear that Emma was going I was excited at the prospect of Italy wining the whole thing. But everything since was downhill from there. MAYBE

    Which leaves the UK: I think that Ewan wrote an article about two years ago wishing for a British Stefan Raab and somehow the BBC made his wish come true. An unknown girl (with a double family name, when was the last time that happened in Eurovision?) with a decent song which doesn’t sound to Eurovision but enough to fit, who can sing and perform. And contrary to popular beliefs everybody in Europe wants to hear something decent from the UK. HIT

  4. Peter says:

    Spain – HIT. I don’t watch XFactor so had no idea what to expect from Ruth, but this is a really strong song that has been performed well in rehearsals, and a great return to form after EDSM.

    Denmark – MAYBE. Fun, catchy, but falls just the wrong side of cheesy a few too many times for me. And lets not forget the accursed Björkman (spit, swear, spin round three times) legacy here: they “drew” 23rd in the running order and have complete control over what goes around it, so this can climb precisely as high as DR need it to.

    Germany – MISS. This is a very good band in serious need of a much better song. I can only assume that people were either voting for it in the NF because they really liked Elaiza or as a protest against Unheilig, because the song goes nowhere fast for three minutes.

    Italy – HIT. I really love this, one of my absolute favourites. It has sass, it has sexiness, it has Grrrrr (thanks Sam), it’s in Italian – what more could you want? I do get what Ewan means when he says this isn’t Emma’s best song, but it’s still better than a lot of other performers could even dream of. And lets not forget, most people won’t have heard of Emma Marrone before Saturday, so can’t prejudge the song against her back-catalogue. This edges out Israel for me purely because it has a rock edge instead of a dance edge.

    France – MAYBE. Well I guess we need at least one comedy song in the Eurovision final, and could work out well as a palate cleanser in between two strong ballads, so it’s not a complete waste of three minutes.

    UK – HIT. I’m so happy to see the UK put some decent effort in for the first time in 12 years that I almost don’t care where it finishes. Almost. 😉

  5. Fredrik says:

    Another great Juke Box Jury 🙂

    Now, don’t kill the messenger, but I really don’t think Molly will be the hit you all hope for. Molly seems to be an absolutely lovely girl and I admit I haven’t seen the live performance yet, but the first time I heard it I didn’t go wow. I have to confess though, that it grows with every listen and I do have it in my top 10, but I don’t think it will be the hit you all hope for. Hopefully I’m wrong!!! It would be wonderful if you could host the ESC next year 🙂 I do think it’s long overdue!

    Hit, miss or maybe in my opinion:

    Spain: Maybe
    France: Hit
    Uk: Maybe
    Germany: Hit (my winner)
    Italy: Maybe
    Denmark: Hit

    No misses at all as you can see 🙂

    From Sweden with love

  6. Ewan Spence says:

    Frederik, good, thanks, we need views outside the bubble on the UK. TBH if you offered Top Ten to me two weeks ago I would have agreed

  7. Harriet Krohn says:

    Somehow I seem to be the only one who doesn’t get why the UK is such a big favourite this year. The song doesn’t do anything for me. “Children of the Universe” and “power to the people” … urgh! These lines alone make my skin crawl. Maybe once again my taste does not match that of Europe, it happens all the time. 😉 Molly is quite far away from my personal top ten, although I don’t hate the song musically. I’m just very indifferent to it.
    In a way I hope this will do well but not win, making the BBC realize that they are in with a chance if they make an effort, so that they’ll send something *really* good next year that can then go on to win. But there are lots of other songs I’d prefert to win this year, and I can’t root for a song just because I’d like a certain country to host the event.

    The same goes for Spain … the lyrics aren’t as “urgh” to me, but the screaming is. “THE RAIN, THE RAIN, THE RAIN” – what kind of message is that? Why does it have to be shouted like that? It’s a nice little power ballad, but power ballads really aren’t my thing. Might do well or not, I can’t judge this kind of song.

    Denmark is fun and cute, but pretty “sorbet”. There are other songs that are catchy and fun that I’m more inclined to vote for … but maybe Europe once again disagrees. 😀

    I’m biased regarding Germany, I was one of those who voted for Elaiza in the German super final. 😉 I heard the song oin the radio the other day while I was brushing my teeth, turned the radio up high and was blasted away. This is not a song that works well when you’re sitting at home, listening to it on your computer or stereo, but I think it gains a lot when performed on stage. That’s where the energy comes across a lot better. That said, looking at the first half draw and the non-existing buzz around this (“We’re just happy to be here and share our music” is just not a winning attitude), I do predict a right sight result. But I still love the song.

    Italy … it’s a nice song that I never remember when I’m trying to list all the entries. Her performance at the German final was a mess, so for her sake I hope she’ll do better in Copenhagen (I’m not watching rehearsals). But yeah, I’m pretty indifferent to this one as well.

    Ahh, France … I LOVE this! Unfortunately people don’t understand that this isn’t just a joke entry, because the lyrcis aren’t in English. But it’s fun and catchy and it’s not all nonsense – maybe not as cute as Denmark, but much better. If I had to choose between Twin Twin and Basim, Denmark would lose out every time. Unfortunately I don’t think the scoreboard will reflect this.

  8. Eddie says:

    Overall the big five are better than for a few years and there is an outside chance that one of them may provide the winner…

    UK – best entry for years. It has certainly grown on me over the last few days. As a sports journalist I cannot help but wonder whether this could be a hat trick for Leicestershire. Leicester City promoted to the Premier League, Mark Selby “the jester from Leicester” World Snooker Champion. Molly from Leicestershire Eurovision winner? As Valentina Monetta might put it “maybe” but it is a HIT from me and top seven.

    Spain – a very accessible Spanish entry that has become a bit of an ear worm. I’m a bit old fashioned and it is good to have a potential front runner partly in its own language. A definite HIT. Should challenge for top seven.

    France – this leaves me cold. Catchy but I suspect many will regard it as just a bit strange. MISS

    Germany – Elaiza are a lovely group and their rise from nothing is quite a touching story. They have a certain international appeal with their combination of Polish, Ukrainian and German roots. The song is infectious but whether it is enough to connect in three minutes I don’t know. At risk of sounding like Ewan last year with regard to Winny Puhh I cannot help but feel that Germany got it wrong. Der Graf and Unheilig would have owned the stage in Copenhagen with either of the USFD songs. Elaiza may have a good future and will pick up votes from folk loving countries like Ireland but Unheilig fill stadiums from Switzerland to St Petersburg and would have given Germany a much better chance. I hope Elaiza do creditably well but it is no more than a MAYBE.

    Italy – I love Emma. I love the song but as soon as I saw the live performance in Koln I was deeply concerned about her chances. The performance needs to be 100% better than anything we’ve seen so far to get this onto the left hand side of the scoreboard. It is a MAYBE but only because I can’t give a miss to one of Europe’s best. Israel’s inexplicable non-qualification improves its chances slightly as there won’t be anything else too similar on Saturday night.

    Denmark – I suspect this will do well although personally it would be close to the bottom of my list. It is a vanilla pop song that will do well enough to give the hosts a credible result but it won’t be on my playlist after Sunday. MISS

    Finally thanks to Insight for another great year of coverage. The buscast was a classic and I’m only sorry that the Eurovision year is drawing to a close but I can’t miss this opportunity to paraphrase Ewan by saying that the real winners of Eurovision 2014 are…Unheilig! Keep it up guys.

  9. Matthias says:

    i was late with listening the Podcast this year, i didn´t want to influence my opinion on the songs.
    but i´m really puzzled where the hype around the UK song came from.
    For me the song was totally dated and like 20 years late in ESC. Wannabee Anthem that never delivered

    For me Germany and France been the biggest contender for the last spot, but it seems like the polish/ukrainian roots of german lead singer helped to pick up some votes to go into top20.

    loved Italy, but i guess it was not the right song for ESC
    Spain was also a good song, and deserved his top10 finish

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