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Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury 2023 #6 Written by on April 27, 2023 | 5 Comments

We’re nearing the end of Juke Box Jury, but when it ends we’ll be in Liverpool! So let’s get to the penultimate episode, shall we? Check your podcast apps, and if you aren’t subscribed, add the RSS Feed to your favourite podcast application, or click here to follow us in iTunes and never miss an episode.

The playlist is nearing its end, but we’re not quite done yet. Settle in with our penultimate episode of Eurovision song reviews as we welcome some new voices to the podcast (but not to the Song Contest) to deliver the hits, misses, and maybes.

Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury #6
with Laura Cress (the Nul Points podcast) and Rita El Khoury (@khouryrt).

Moldova: Soarele și luna, by Pasha Parfeni.
Georgia: Echo, by Iru Khechanovi.
Italy: Due Vite, by Marco Mengoni.
Lithuania: Stay, Monika Linkytė.
Sweden: Tattoo, by Loreen.

Stay up to date with all the discussions, news, and reviews as the time to travel to Liverpool for Eurovision 2023 with ESC Insight has nearly arrived. You’ll find the show in iTunesGoogle Podcasts, and SpotifyA direct RSS feed is available. We have a regular email newsletter which you can sign up to here., and you can support us on Patreon here.

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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5 responses to “Eurovision Insight Podcast: Juke Box Jury 2023 #6”

  1. Marc says:

    Thunderclap Newman could have been the fifth winner in 1969. Two excellent guests, thanks for another super Juke Box Jury season.

  2. Listener says:

    JBJ has had a few dumb takes in its time but “the producers of Sanremo picked songs for Eurovision” has to be the absolute worst take

  3. Ewan Spence says:

    Given Sanremo now mandates that any artist entering Sanremo *must* represent Italy at the Eurovision Song Contest means that the Song Contest is *part* of the consideration. The only consideration? No, just part of it. Could it have been more of a consideration in 2021 compared to 2023? That’s certainly my opinion, having watched Sanremo for many a year.

  4. Shai says:

    This is quite a different tune from Moldova. After a string of fun songs they went for something which sounds more traditional and has folks elements in it. If anything it reminds me Ukraine 2021, just without the intensity of that song. It also less energetic and more serious musically than his song from 2012. There is no doubt he can sing live. I quite like it although I think he is also suffering from being in semi 1 – HIT(the lower part of HIT, more close to the MAYBE)

    Overproduced song, with lyrics which do not make any sense. Not really sure what this song is all about and I am also not convinced she understand what she is singing about, although it seems she contributed to the lyrics. The text sounds and looks like someone was picking it randomly so it sounds all important and meaningful but creating just the oppositie – MISS

    It’s a classic Italian mid-tempo ballad. I think they did a fine job in cutting this into a 3 minutes without harming the structure of the song. It a song which has a lot of word in it, but this never harmed Italy chances in Eurovision. I think this is roughly in the same quality as his his previous outing in 2013, however I like the 2013 song more. It’s not the best that Italy has sent in the last 10 years but it also not one of the best they have sent in the last 10 years – MAYBE

    This is quite weird. If I am not mistaken, she is singing about her mental health and fighting her depression. So how this match the Lion King vibe I am getting from the chorus. The verses are really good and tell the story in the right tone, also musically. The choruse is just too happy and contradict the whole vibe the verses convey. Somehow the verse and the chorus contradict each other, in tone. Very strange song this one. Somehwere between MISS and a MAYBE

    11 years after her win, Loreen is back and again she is mumbling her way through the song, and I a half deaf man, can’t understand what she is singing about, without using the subtitle,very much like Euphoria. I never liked Euhopria. I never thought it is a good song , but even I acknowledge that Euphoria was an accessible and uplifting song. Tattoo is neither uplifting nor accessible. The song goes quite monotonous from A to B with no development or progress. There is 1 beat carrying the whole song.The bridge is just a collection of sounds which give Loreen the chance to breath a bit, but not really helping the song to develop further on. Sophisticated song writing it isn’t. It’s quite a mediocre song. It’s not helped by the banal text , which is anything but inspiring.
    In the last decade we were talking about how being authentic is to way to win the song. This song is not really authentic. In fact, I quite resent the cynical thoughts behind the whole thing and I dislike the manipulation employee by everyone involved to make sure this is the next winner of the contest.

    Ewan was saying about Moldova, that he trust how they will stage this song and gave the example of Luxembourg, as a country we wouldn’t trust on a Eurovision staging. Let me go further with this comparison and ask you this: Would you still think this a good song if this was presented by the same Luxemburg and sung by a different singer? I doubt if you give any attention to this song and you will no doubt think that this is quite an average and pretentious song. But hey -Sweden can do no wrong and get away with everything they do, even if the end result is a sub-standard song.
    And than there is the staging(at least the one with saw during MF) – Can anyone explain me how this staging is helping telling a story? There is no connection between the song and the staging. The staging is there to distract me as a viewer from the weakness of the song. During Eurovision In Concert, and without the elaborate staging, the song was exposed to me in all of it’s weaknesses.
    It’s a shame that in a year where some broadcasters came with some musically and /or textual inspiring songs. Where some of the songs are trying to go beyond what you would considered a typical Eurovision song, the song which is favourite to win is anything but a musically inspiring song and seems to go back to what people think is a typical Eurovision song.

    It is the pre-favourite and in the last decade(more or less), the pre-favourite has always won. For once , I would be very happy if this song doesn’t win. It will be a good thing for the contest if a different song wins. I am sure it will be a HIT for the contest, but for me it a huge MISS(and I do feel, in this case, like the child from the Emperor’s New Cloths, who say out loud, that the queen is naked)

  5. Ben Pitchers says:

    Moldova: HIT. Great to see Pasha back at the contest with a song entirely in Romanian. This type of entry has done well in the last few years and this is another solid example. Its sound makes it stand out in SF1. I think it will qualify without too much difficulty. There isn’t much development in the song but Pasha and Moldova know how to stage entries and he’s an established and confident artist. Probably a mid-table finish in the final.

    Georgia: MAYBE. A striking entry but a missed opportunity. Iru’s a fantastic singer and there’s been a lot of money spent on the production of the song and the music video. The lyrics have taken a back seat which is a real shame. Even though Iru has proven herself to be able to sing well in English, it’s hard to work out what she sings in this song. This is probably for the best as the lyrics are a real word salad. If the lyrics were better or if the song was in Georgian they could have been looking at a top 10 entry. I think there’s enough to qualify and I expect the staging to be good and maybe that’s a good enough goal for Georgia this year.

    Italy: HIT. Yet another great quality entry and in my opinion a very beautiful song. Marco sings it so well and so passionately. While it’s more of a solid than an exciting entry, it’s got a good shot at another top 10 for Italy especially if the juries love it. Marco doesn’t seem burned out at performing it and very enthusiastic to be back.

    Lithuania: HIT. This is a very personal entry and an upgrade from her 2015 song, which I also liked. I really enjoy the different colours of the song and how it moves from negativity in her past during the verses to hopeful and joyful in the chorus. After it was chosen I was worried that she was going to remove the čiūto tūto part, but it seems like it’s still going to be there. That phrase gives the song an extra flavour and is its ear worm. I think this will easily qualify and should improve on her 18th place in 2015, especially if the juries really score it highly.

    Sweden: HIT. I agree that is hard to judge this entry. I first saw more than a few seconds of it when I watched the MF final. I thought it was good, but I found it a little hard to understand what she was singing and it didn’t blow me away. You can’t help but compare it to Euphoria and make a judgment based on that. I don’t like it as much as Euphoria and it isn’t a given that it will win in my opinion. We’re not sure at the moment what staging Sweden will have in Liverpool, but even if they can’t reproduce the MF staging the staging will be very high quality. Loreen is very serious about her artistry, but I wonder if the fact that she doesn’t look at the camera much and that the performance is separated off from the live audience may drag the televote down. It’s obvious why this is the favourite to win, but I think there’s more creative entries that would make a more refreshing winner. Also, to have the first artist to win it twice sing Johnny Logan, I’d prefer that artist to have won with dissimilar entries. All that overthinking aside, I do like it and it wouldn’t be a bad winner, I would just prefer Finland to win!

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