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The 2023 Melodija Golden Disc Award

Updated: Jan 22

Yesterday marked the deadline for our esteemed members to cast their votes for the best releases of 2023, which featured more than seventy entries across six categories, categorised by genre or as closely aligned as possible. Here are the top five releases in each category, (including a short note on the winner of each category), as determined by your votes:

  1. Ben Bailey – Still Waiting

Over the course of the last year, Ben Bailey experienced an extraordinary series of milestones, including the creation and launch of his solo EP titled "Still Waiting." Additionally, he collaborated on a visual EP with Vinyl Paradise, titled "Vinyl Paradise Live at Winehouse." Notably, he recorded a forthcoming full-length album with Vinyl Paradise at Temple Studios, slated for release this year. It's essential to acknowledge his dynamic live performances, both as a solo artist and with Vinyl Paradise. This EP showcases Ben Bailey's versatility, featuring a diverse range of musical genres such as pop, rock, and blues. Listen to the album

2. Julie Pomorsky - Hsieb EP

3. Red Electric – In Our Blood

4. Hearts Beating In Time – Let’s Watch The Sky Turn Pink

5. Eddie Fresco X Gizmo – Perucka

  1. Damaged & Co. – Life’s Grand Delusion

"Life's Grand Delusion" marks the inaugural album from alternative/melodic metal group Damaged & Co. This comprehensive release comprises eleven tracks, spanning a creative timeline of four years. The album seamlessly weaves together influences from metalcore, dark/symphonic metal, and alternative metal. What sets "Life's Grand Delusion" apart is Damaged & Co.'s remarkable talent for crafting each song into a distinct gem, characterized by a clear identity and a direct message. While the songs may not be overly technical, their brilliance lies in the collaborative songwriting process of the entire band. Listen to the album

2. Mur.doc 104 - The Undying

3. Saint Vermin – Together As None

4. Hemplifier – The Stoner Side Of The Doom

5. Weeping Silence - Isles Of Lore

  1. Warren Galea - Meditations

"Meditations," Warren Galea's third album, released on August 18th, stands as his most personal record to date, according to the artist himself. In this album, Warren, accompanied only by his guitar, presents a collection of solo improvisations recorded over the span of one year.

2. Cushion – Reborn

3. Frank Bonnici – The Last Autumn

4. Vinyl Paradise – Winehouse (live)

5. Tohu – Holy Matrimony

  1. Llimbs - Midnight Amber

Drawing inspiration from dark and experimental tones, Midnight Amber emerges as a powerhouse of genre-defying compositions. Crafted through a blend of downtempo and dreamlike sounds, the music delves into both the organic and digital realms. The outcome is an indescribable experience that is simultaneously haunting and irresistibly captivating. Listen to the album

2. Scibi – The Motion Vol 1

3. Interkonnekted – Spektral Heart

4. Devil’s Breath – African Spiritual Paths

5. Joseph Spiteri - Rude Boy EP

  1. Ara Lil Yoon - Triboulet

In 2011, Julian Wood and Francesco Nicastro formed Ara Lil Yoon in Malta before relocating to Berlin in 2017 for a more expansive music scene. Over the subsequent years, Jack Molloy, Jyoti Sekhawat, and Luke Scerri (Fake Ophelia) joined the group. Their inaugural full-length album, "Triboulet," was released in August. Serving as a follow-up to the band's April EP, "Taste," this album transcends their post-punk origins, incorporating elements of punk, gypsy, hip-hop, grunge, and subtle melodic disco. Listen to the album

2. Eyes To Argus – Habit_At

3. Tryst Arcane featuring Emanuel Portelli – Sun Of Other Days

4. Ara Lil Yoon – Taste EP

5. The Areola Treat - Red Town Baby

  1. Double Standard – Mt. Focus

Double Standard has independently launched their debut album, "Mt. Focus," featuring ten tracks available on limited edition 12” vinyl and various digital formats. The band took charge of the entire production process. The album delves into themes of systemic racism, cosmology, misinformation, anxiety, and pays homage to the band's favorite actor, Patrick Swayze. Originating from all over Europe but stationed on this secluded island, Double Standard draws inspiration from a Penny Rimbaud (Crass) quote for their name. Having performed extensively across the island, they have steadily cultivated a devoted fan base. With the release of "Mt. Focus," Double Standard aims to extend their reach and share their music beyond their local scene.

2. Checkmate - Royal Blood

3. Vince Bongailas – Tour

4. Shaun Farrugia – Heaven Like Mine EP

5. Daniel Sant – The Malta Singles EP

Melodija extends its congratulations to all artists and bands for the outstanding tunes produced throughout 2023. As we eagerly anticipate the upcoming year, the buzz circulating through the corridors of suggests that it is poised to be an exhilarating and impactful year.

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