Top 10 Songs of 2016 by Local Artists

Image: Jack’s Fusion

Forget Ira Losco’s Walk on Water. These were the best local songs of the past year according to Marilyn Aquilina.

10 — “Powerless” by WaterWings

Composed of 4 university students, this band has been in the music scene since the release of their debut single ‘Steal the Crown’ back in 2014, and it still has good reason to stay. Their 3rd single ‘Powerless’ has a dynamic but ambient sound when compared to their two first singles, reflecting the band’s ability to experiment with rock and electronic music and fuse them together. This may be seen as a risk for some, but this song is proof that certain risks do pay off!

9 — “Push” by Relikc

‘Push’ is Malta’s first 360° video to be produced, and is a stellar collaboration with students attending the MCAST Institute of Art and Design. It is a catchy and upbeat tune which truly represents what the band is all about – a group of good friends having a blast creating feel-good, funky music. Having released other singles like ‘Prime Time’ and ‘Sharon Kaydee’, Relikc’s music never ceases to put a smile on my face each time I get to listen to them, and this song does just that!

8 — “Passenger Seat” by Joe Roscoe

A song which hit the airwaves in September, ‘Passenger Seat’ is a chill, laid back song with an acoustic vibe. It perfectly reflects his style, as influenced by international musicians like Ed Sheeran and Passenger. Joe Roscoe is a 23-year old musician, currently located in Manchester to further his career in music. You can easily spot him as a busker there covering popular tunes, or at an open mic night in one of the local bars.

7 — “Il-Patt” by Shyli

At 16 years of age, Shyli writes her own lyrics in Maltese, whilst managing to sing about personal experiences and emotions through the medium of rap. ‘Il-Patt’ gained viral popularity after the artist uploaded a video of herself singing the self-penned track in her bedroom, reaching an astonishing 313,000 views to date. No, she may not be the typical Maltese female artist, but she is refreshing to say the least, making her a relatable and genuine artist to follow. So hats off to Shyli – she is definitely one to look out for!

6 — “The Great Divide” by The New Victorians

This talented sister duo is known for their angelic harmonies and brilliant song writing, which is clearly evident in their album “Seeker, Seeker” released back in 2015. This song was inspired by one of the sibling’s visit to Kenya, capturing the struggles of children experiencing unstable situations. For this single, The New Victorians collaborated with D.O. Cambodia Project, which aims to teach poor and abandoned children through the powerful tools of drama, singing and dancing. This goes to show that music can be a powerful tool to inspire change!

5 — “Everybody’s Listening” by Red Electrick

Red Electrick is already known for releasing one hit after another, and this tune most definitely joins them. Having a different yet vibrant sound from their other singles, ‘Everybody’s Listening’ is a catchy song that instantly replays in your head after listening to it once. This song is featured in their latest album “Inside You”, which is the band’s third album to date.

4 — “Burn The Day” by Jack’s Fusion

Since debuting their first single ‘Electric’ over a year ago, the energetic band has been on a hard-working roll performing at numerous gigs and launching their first EP “Impulse” back in August. ‘Burn the Day’ is their official follow-up release, and it is another lively tune featuring a snappy guitar riff and an unexpectedly impressive music break towards the middle. I have been following the band since their first gig back in 2013, and their music never fails to bring out my inner rocker chick head-banging her heart out!

3 — “It’s Alright (I’ve Got The Blues)” by The Busker

Having released their debut album “Telegraph” earlier this month, The Busker is popular for bringing back jazz and blues vibes in their original material. The video for their single ‘It’s Alright (I’ve Got the Blues)’ was shot at a local church, contributing to the song’s vintage and classic sound. Contrary to the song’s title, this band gives me everything but the blues, and I’m grateful for musicians who are able to keep my feet moving to their music.

2 — “Hush Now” by Hazyl

A single which has topped the local charts ever since its release, Hazyl brings forward an organic yet rich sound to the local music scene. Its reviving melody and soothing vocals have the ability to ooze into one’s mind and calm one’s senses. Although they haven’t released any new music yet, the band aims to keep on writing more material, and I look forward to listening to it!

1 — “Dak Li Int” by The Travellers

This Gozitan band has been dominating the local music scene ever since their debut single ‘Sempliċità’ hit the airwaves at the beginning of 2016, and they prove to be a force to be reckoned with. The Travellers are a breath of fresh air when it comes to making Maltese songs sound beautiful and modern, and this is conveyed through their meaningful lyrics and unforgettable melodies. Any of their songs from their debut EP “Xemx u Xita” can secure this top spot, but ‘Dak li Int’ is a simple yet captivating song that has captured both my ears and heart since the first listen. With a bright future ahead of the band, I can’t wait to see what’s in store for them!

BONUS (Best Cover) — “Eurovision Mashup” by Ceci Zammit Endrich

Even though this is just a cover, featured in Lovin Malta’s #LovinLounge series, it is a blissful melting pot of 3 popular Maltese entries from the Eurovision Song Contest (see if you can recognize them for yourself) and it sounds delightful, especially for anyone who is a die-heart Eurovision fan! Ceci Zammit Endrich did a terrific job transitioning from one song to the other so effortlessly, and you wouldn’t realise it was made up of 3 Eurovision entries if you didn’t know any of them – and that it why she deserves a mention!

Written by

Marilyn Aquilina

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