Wiwi Jury: Russia’s Julia Samoylova with “I Won’t Break”

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The Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — continues to rank and review the 43 songs competing in Eurovision 2018. Next we head to Russia where Julia Samoylova has another turn at Eurovision, this time with “I Won’t Break”. Did we feel her message? Read on to find out!

Julia Samoylova – “I Won’t Break”

“I Won’t Break” reviews

William: Julia Samoylova is a woman who understands challenges. From living with spinal muscular atrophy to dealing with accusations that she was a geopolitical pawn, she’s kept her head high and pursued her passions — even when people told her she shouldn’t or couldn’t reach them. That backstory makes this anthem of perseverance all the more powerful. Her song drips with a sense of wistfulness and nostalgia that feels thoroughly Russian. Yet she reaches beyond borders with thoughtful production that tugs on heartstrings. She’s come a long way in a year. And while she desperately needs to work on her enunciation, she can rest assured that she — like the mountain she becomes in the video — won’t break. She’s a strong woman — and she’s cutting a path straight to the final.

Score: 8/10

Bogdan: While I am happy that Julia will sing at Eurovision after the unfortunate set of circumstances that prevented her from representing her country last year, I can’t help wondering “what if?”. Despite the fact that “I Won’t Break” is more modern, I liked the nostalgic vibe of “Flame is Burning” a lot more. I think I would have liked it better as well if Julia had sung in Russian, as her English enunciation doesn’t do her any favours. Nonetheless, it’s her big moment and I am positive that the resilient singer will shine.

Score: 4.5/10

Cinan: I love the instrumental version of this song, though the regular version is also good. The song is a bit similar to “Flame is Burning”, but her 2017 entry was a very good one. Julia looks beautiful in the music video. I can’t wait to see her performing this live.

Score: 5.5/10

Jordi: This year’s offering is just a million miles away from what Russia is capable of. “I Won’t Break” is powerful with meaning but not in its beat. Julia has proved before that she can deliver, but this song just falls short on her. While it is true that it creates an atmosphere right from its first notes, the chorus then arrives and rapidly decreases its hook. It feels like something is wrong with the concept. Such powerful meaning should have a much more powerful song. I’m a little frustrated by this, but I’m sure Julia will be provided with a strong staging that can uplift her performance.

Score: 6/10 

Kristin: Despite best intentions, Julia’s English isn’t the clearest and it takes away the joy of listening to a well-produced pop song, which “I won’t break” undoubtedly is. However, that doesn’t leave much when it’s run its course.  Julia herself though is stunning and has a beautiful voice and that alone is worth noticing. But the song itself doesn’t quite reach me. I got bored halfway through.

Score: 5/10

Luis: “I Won’t Break” is a decent pop track that could be from any year between 2000 and 2018. It doesn’t bring anything new, but it’s among the finest entries within the numerous group of generic pop songs by female singers we have this year. This is so much better than the cheap “Flame is Burning”, and it shows a shade of Julia that represents her more as a singer. She can be very proud of this.

Score: 6.5/10

In the Wiwi Jury we have 20 jurors but only have room for six reviews. The remaining scores are below:

Angus: 3.5/10

Anthony: 7/10

Antranig: 7/10

Bernardo: 3.5/10

Chris: 5/10

Deban: 4/10

Jonathan: 6.5/10

Jovana: 7/10

Padraig: 5.5/10

Renske: 7/10

Robyn: 6.5/10

Ron: 7.5/10

Sebastian: 6/10

Steinunn: 3/10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We have removed the highest and lowest scores prior to calculating the average. This is to remove outliers and potential bias. We have removed a low of 3 and a high of 8.

Wiwi Jury verdict: 5.75/10

What do you think of this song? Share your own score and review below!

See all our Eurovision 2018 reviews and rankings