Early this morning the Wiwi Jury—our in-house panel of musical unprofessionals—held a candle light vigil for the people of Ukraine. Then we put our sympathy to the side and gathered to review Maria Yaremchuk’s Eurovision 2014 song “Tick Tock”. Do we think that Maria’s time is now? Or are we sounding the alarm that her time is up? Read on to find out…

Padraig: Talk about a scare before the deadline! Mere days before the EBU cut-off point it was looking likely that Ukraine’s untarnished Eurovision record was about to come to an end. We were faced with 2 choices – the incestuous mess which won the Ukraine selection or the frigid goody-two-shoes version from the Maltese final. One word – bleak. But we were being played for fools. Of course Ukraine weren’t planning on sending muck! They had this little gem tucked up their sleeves. Fun, modern and lyrically coherent – I love it. Major kudos to the producers for transforming a possible non-qualifier into a mega contender. Bring back the “tricky tick tocks” and we’d have a mini masterpiece.

Score: 9.5/10

Angus: Gone is the weave. Gone is the fake tan. Gone is the slit in her dress and gone are the stripper heels. Fortunately Maria Yaremchuck also hasn’t lunged to the opposite extreme and has also trashed her virginal, Zlata-fied performance from Malta. She’s still seductive but now she’s a classy flirt and tease: “Shhhh – don’t stop: kiss and kiss me till I drop.” There’s little doubt she’ll have all the boys hot under the collar and ‘Tick Tock’ sizzles with flirtation. A bright burst of fun amidst the deluge of dreary ballads, Maria is going to SLAY on stage in Copenhagen and god help anyone foolish enough to cross her path. The verb slay was made for her and girl lays it down. Put the bass in your walk, honey!

Score: 10/10

Zach: Ukraine is my favorite Eurovision country. Besides 2003 and 2005 I love every song, and Maria continues that trend. During their national final I was heavily rooting for Viktoria Petryk, and when Tick Tock won I didn’t think it was that good. But after a few listens it kept getting catchier and catchier, and I was hooked. I knew they would “Zlatafy” it right from the get go, so I waited excitedly to see what changes would be made. The Maltese NF version was pretty good, but the final product is a total revamp that makes me think Ukraine could do extremely well yet again. It’s slightly “jazzier”, but with a dance edge as well. The lyrics are MUCH more cohesive now. The English isn’t perfect, but let’s just all be glad the incest “belong to each other like a sister to a brother” line has been cut! Maria has good vocals as well, so I predict another top 10 for Ukraine, quite possibly top 5, maybe even the win if she plays her cards right. I do miss “tricky tricky tock tock tock” though….

Score: 8.5/10

Kabuki MariyaVebooboo: Of all the countries out there, Ukraine most consistently delivers professionally staged, carefully orchestrated performances. And you know what, this year is NO DIFFERENT. Enter Maria Yaremchuk, a sexy fox who worked it out so much at Eurovision in Concert that I had to check my straight guy friend’s underwear for stains. This song is modern, catchy and simple–and those are three adjectives that bode oh so well in this competition.

Score: 9/10

Bogdan: Maria has it all: the sexy look, the catchy chorus, and, if Eurovision in Concert is any indication, the perfect dance routine AND backing dancers. As for the song itself, I embrace the final version with both arms (I didn’t like the ticky-ticky-tock-tock-tock part, I found it kitsch-kitsch-kitschy — and don’t even get me started on the Zlatified version she performed in Malta, I’m still trying to block that memory). And, as odds would have it, it’s definitely what Maria needs to advance further in the final Top 10. Her only worry should be the juries…

Score: 7/10

Anthony: The final version is a significant improvement. I’m kinda torn as a result of all the changes. I’m also having mixed feelings about Maria ditching the “tock tock tock” parts altogether. While I’m glad she took in the advice, part of me feels like I’m missing it already. Overall, it’s quite a catchy entry from Maria, but not up there with Ke$ha’s hit single namesake. It’s going to be a big ask for Ukraine to match, let alone outdo, last year’s top 3 finish from Zlata herself.

Score: 6.5/10

http://youtu.be/dRQjUY3cf48

Deban: Several versions later, ‘Tick Tock’  is now only mildly irritating. How does Ukraine get away with it? Reworking its entries right up until showtime. I can see a new rule emerging in future contests preventing broadcasters from making any changes to songs. This entry does benefit from the re-working. The original version that surprisingly won the pre-selection was an incestuous, zlata-fied travesty! Now, here’s the verdict: Tick Tock is a lightweight pop tune which lacks sensible lyrics and a straightforward melody. However, by pouring tons of cash into it, forcing it dowm people’s throat’s, and plugging it at every regional semi final going, it begins to sound familiar. Many people often vote for what they know regardless of its merits. Ukraine will bag those votes this year—just not mine.

Score: 3/10

Billy: Never count Ukraine out. When this won the national final I thought it was doomed to fail. But they reworked it—and Maria werked it—and finally managed to give this entry some proper style. Even though I love retro, this is still a little weak. You could do much better, Ukraine!

Score: 6/10

Ukraine Maria Yaremchuk Eurovision 5Katie: Since this was the first Eurovision song we all heard, I’ve had a lot of time to listen to it and learn to love it. Despite a lot of changes from the original version, I can happily sing along to the final version and although it’s not the most sophisticated song in the competition, I really enjoy listening to it. The updated chorus is my personal highlight, thank goodness they binned the dreadful “tricky, ticky, tock tock tock!”. Maria is such a likeable singer. She’s gone from fake tan streaks to beautiful dresses. I know she’s going to shine in Copenhagen and hopefully make it through to the final on merit rather than sympathetic political voting. At the same time I hope the issue of politics doesn’t put her at a disadvantage for qualifying. It’s up to her to show Europe what Ukraine is made of!

Score: 9/10

Wiwi: One of my favourite moments on this year’s campaign trail came at Eurovision in Concert when Maria’s dancers lifted her into the air two minutes into her performance in Amsterdam. She seemed to be levitating and looked as if she were about to swallow the microphone (see below at 2:09). It’s another example of how malleable Maria is, and how she can adapt to any situation (or version of her song). She brings a real sensuality to this number that makes all of us lick our lips. I think it’ll make Europeans pick up their phones, too.

Score: 8.5/10

http://youtu.be/hSDjRo1e4kU

All 19 members of our jury rate each song. However, we only have room to share 10 written reviews. Here are the remaining nine scores.

James L: 6/10

Mario: 6/10

Maxim Montana: 9/10

Mike: 6.5/10

Francheska: 6/10

Ramadan: 7/10

Patrick: 8/10

Sami: 8/10

William: 8.6/10

Prior to calculating the average we drop the highest and lowest score. We have removed a low of 3 and a high of 10.

The Wiwi Jury Verdict: 7.59/10

You can check out our latest Eurovision 2014 reviews and rankings on the Wiwi Jury page. You can keep up-to-date on the latest Eurovision news and gossip by following the team on Twitter @wiwibloggs and by liking our Facebook page.

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vgerrard
Guest
vgerrard

I am from Ireland & I will now make my prediction…the first time I heard this song was today along with the Russian song “Shine” which didn’t shine for me & I could tell straight away Ukraine’s entry is the winner. Mariya (some media is calling her Maria) has the perfect song because it’s catchy, has a memorable hook, is made for Eurovision, & has a beautiful girl with a beautiful voice belting it out. Now I have just listened to the original version, that too a good version, but who ever made the changes or suggested same makes this… Read more »

MoMo
Guest
MoMo

This song and video are about a decade and a half late. Just ask Britney.

Leon
Guest
Leon

Good on the eyes, very well performed – apart from being hot, she just draws you in with her presence. Production did a good job with the video but can they transfer the quality on to 3 mins on the stage?
8/10

Nelia Makariv
Guest

So creative! I like this flasmob) Cant wait for Eurovision – wanna watch Maria’s perfomance

Roman Kovalchuk
Guest

Support Ukraine, not Russia! Maria is talented and beautiful girl with great voice. Tick-Tock is nice song for Eurovision, and if you want to hear other songs – just visit youtube and watch Maria’s videos – Im sure you will like it\

Rogie
Guest
Rogie

Tick Tick catchy pop song but I am intrigued what may happen with the voting for Ukraine and Russia in the current situation .
Could be a finalist but who will be getting the Ukraine 12 points !

Valerie van Dijk
Guest
Valerie van Dijk

Im visited Ukraine in 2012. Some girls was so beauty and have a really grate talant! I think that Maria will win becouse she have nice voice! goodluck!

Chesco
Guest
Chesco

This is awful! It is tacky, crappy and silly. What were they thinking? they have much better talent than what is shown here. Such a pity because she has good presence and although her voice is nothing to write home about, they could certainly have given her something to sing which didn’t sound like a nursery-rhyme

Anna
Guest
Anna

Mary is so perfect!!!! Europe. we are waiting for our 12 points from you!!!! We have the most beautiful and talented person here 😉

Jean Ralphio
Guest
Jean Ralphio

she is deserving more than 7.5.

Neriah Motillo (@neri_motillo)
Guest
Neriah Motillo (@neri_motillo)

I’ll give it 10 out of 10 <3

GVFLONDON
Guest
GVFLONDON

Eastern European crap.

Reality
Guest
Reality

@Leon
Anything is better than that horrific song! I don’t understand what they were thinking that year? Armenia has so many great singers who could’ve won this thing many times, only if they had the right song.

Leon
Guest
Leon

@Reality – Tick Tock is definitely better. It actually reminds of Song #1 by Serebro.

I think this is one of the better songs this year. Definitely in my top 10.

1) Armenia 10/10
2) Sweden 9/10
3) Austria 9/10
4) Israel 8.5/10
5) Greece 8/10
6) Ukraine 8/10
7) Spain 8/10
8) Spain 7.5/10
9) Hungary 7/10
10) UK 7/10

Reality
Guest
Reality

I like this song but it’s a little too primitive for ESC. It reminds me of Armenia’s 2011 entry: With Emmy’s Boom-boom, which didn’t qualify for the final. I’m not saying its very similar. Not at all or it’s just like that song, but there are slight similarities in the chorus, which annoy me. Btw, I do have some music background and I’m not clueless.

bavarson
Guest
bavarson

Super prediction:
TOP 5 OF 1ST SEMI FINAL:
1. Ukraine 120 – 160 points
2. Russia 120 – 160 points
3. Estonia 80 – 120 points
4. Hungary 80 – 120 points
5. Azerbaijan 80 – 120 points

TOP 5 OF 2ND SEMI FINAL:
1. Ireland 120 – 160 points
2. Romania 120 – 160 points
3. Finland 80 – 120 points
4. Lithuania 80 – 120 points
5. Greece 40 – 80 points

FINAL TOP 5 PREDICTION:
1. Ukraine 200 – 240 points
2. Russia 160 – 200 points
3. Estonia 160 – 200 points
4. Ireland 120 – 160 points
5. Romania 120 – 160 points

Frank75
Guest
Frank75

perdon , idioma quiero decir

Frank75
Guest
Frank75

Gracias Marcelo , espero tambien te haya hecho reir , bastante que se burlan de nuestro idioma los inglesitos y americanos , y lo destrozan cuando lo hablan y escriben , pues yo no voy a ser menos con su idoma

David
Guest
David

But SWEDEN will win!

David
Guest
David

One of the best songs this year!

Marcelo N
Guest

@ Frank 75, me hiciste el día con tu mensaje en “inglés”.

Frank75
Guest
Frank75

The song is really bad , nothing atractive only the singer , but ok , this is a politic festival and whats happen in moment in Ukraine ,make it do a big impuls to the top, something smell no more good en this festival ,

Jacqueline Bouclier
Guest

song is attractive, and Maria too) Her look is totally perfect for her song and live perfomance

Digi
Guest
Digi

I think this song will not win ESC 2014. But this song is not bad and this song is Dark Horse of ESC 2014. But ESC 2013 is better than 2014 for Ukraine.

Sofie
Guest
Sofie

I just do not understand why so many people like this song. I feel as if I have heard it a million times before and it is a quite trashy, bubblegum-pop song.

Marcelo N
Guest

@ Fatima, you’re perfectly right. But you know, when it’s still done by others and this one remains better at it, there’s no harm in giving it points within its niche.
I’m glad we readers are making more civilised and open-minded comments (even in disagreement) than the “panel of menstruating unprofessionals” 😉

Easpag
Guest
Easpag

I’m so happy this got a good score. It’s been one of my favourites the whole time. As more songs were announced, it began to slip down my rankings, but with each new version it climbed back up. I only like Poland and Israel more, and I see this doing very well indeed.
9.5/10

Fatima
Guest
Fatima

I don’t think it’s distinctive enough to win. Hair extensions, average vocals, formation dancing with boys. We’ve seen it all before, in and out of Eurovision.

Ryanireland
Guest
Ryanireland

Euro trash. Ukraine in fairness has had some great entries. This isnt one of them. However it will qualify due to bloc votingand probably take an undeserved top 5 place from some other countries. Always the way. Theyll get 12 maybe from belarus possibly moldova maybe Poland and Lithuania

Lefteris
Guest
Lefteris

This is my top 10:

01.Greece
02.San Marino
03.Sweden
04.Spain
05.Hungary
06.Switzerland
07.Russia
08.Montenegro
09.Azerbaijan
10.United Kingdom

Woz
Guest
Woz

Sorry again… I meant WESTERN europe. God, I wish I could edit!

Woz
Guest
Woz

I’m curious to see what comes out when you mix sexiness, catchiness and empathy. Go Ukraine! The whole (eastern) Europe stands on your side. But please, watch out this time for the color of your tongue. Every detail counts.

khm
Guest
khm

Sorry, but you’ve overrated the song. It’s the same bullshit as before, but OK, it will go to the Final because it’s Ukraine.

Timselvision
Guest
Timselvision

She looks good and her song is catchy. That catchy that I always have to whistle during listening to this song. In my top 10. Good luck, Ukraine! May be this year’s winner due blockvoting and symphaty.

Dan RO
Guest
Dan RO

Here’s a country that takes ESC seriously! Ukraine has been in the last 10 years one of the most anticipated countries for me. They had their misses, but Tina Karol’s ‘Show me your love’ from 2006, Ani Lorak’s ‘Shady Lady’ from 2008 and, of course, Zlata from last year were my favourites in their respective years (and, yes, Zlata is one of my all time favourites, I’ve been playing ‘Gravity’ ever since her first performance until now, and will continue to do so). Maria is not better than any of those ladies (shadies or virginal) in my opinion, and it… Read more »

Brunowskii
Guest
Brunowskii

Maria and Tick Tock are getting better from month to month… From the bottom to the top. Without any doubt, in my top 3 now.

Huh
Guest
Huh

@Marcelo N

They are busy emphasizing so much on the “disadvantages” of the songs 🙁

Julian
Guest
Julian

@G parasitizing much?

EUROFAN MEXICO
Guest

LO SIENTO PERO ESTA CANCION SE ME HACE PATETICA COMO PUEDEN CONSIDERARLA BUENA MUSICA

Thiefo
Guest
Thiefo

Well, this is a totally biased comment from me because Ukraine is my favourite this year so I’m gonna say, I love Mariya! I loved her song since december and I actually like all the three versions, a part of me wanted to keep the slower, more mystic version from the Maltese NF, but I’m so satisfied with the final version, I can’t be happier!

Marcelo N
Guest

I’m amazed at how rashly so many people grant themselves a degree in literary analysis to call a line in a song incestuous, or the song for that matter. Then suddenly they won’t make sense of other lyrics and keep throwing hands up in horror at what nonsense they are.
Either you can read, or you can’t. Or is it deceitful hiding of preferences that have little to do with the writing itself?

Robyn
Guest
Robyn

I really miss “the rhythm of my heart is inexhaustible”. The final version of the song sounds slicker, but it’s lacking some of the mojo from the original version. Like, it’s ok, but there’s no magic there.

Jericho
Guest
Jericho

Good call Alex. She’s great. The song is just OK.

Alex
Guest
Alex

Ehh. She always performs it well live, but the song lacks a little something. It’s no “Shady Lady.” But it’ll be enjoyable when it’s on stage.