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Show notes for the 322nd Mużika Mod Ieħor podcast featuring music by performers from or in Malta:

Lauren AquilinaFools
Way back in September my friend Kenneth J. Vella introduced me to the beautiful haunting voice of this British singer of Maltese descent. I immediately declared that this was a star in the making. Time is proving me right. Now that her debut EP is actually out (it was released on 22/10/12) it gives me great pleasure to include it on the 2012 MMI Listeners’ Picks Poll in the Overseas category. She is a great contender on this year’s poll and I think she has a good chance of unseating Joseph Calleja who is currently defending last year’s top pick spot in this category with his cover of the Mario Lanza classic Be My Love.

Claire TonnaMar
The debut album from one of my personal favourite Maltese singer-songwriters is called The Port. This is one of the tracks from that CD, which is now being released in New Zealand where the artist will be spending the next couple of months promoting this album. This has made me nominate this album in the Overseas category of the 2012 MMI Listeners’ Picks Poll. Having spent so many months away from Maltese shores, I sincerely believe that Claire Tonna deserves to be in this category regardless of the fact that her main musical collaborator is Mario Sammut, better known as Cygna. Although not as high profile a release as the other two I mentioned already mentioned today in this category, I’d be very surprised if this album didn’t manage to end up in the top 5 on this category.

Martin McNeil and the DissidentsApothecary
Last week I sat in a radio studio in Malta having a conversation with Alex Alden about alternative guitar tunings. This led me to convince her to break a string on her dad’s Ovation guitar just minutes before she was due to sing live on Michael Bugeja’s Rockna radio show. Luckily Konrad Pule’ came to the rescue with his impressive acoustic Gibson. I was therefore quite pleased to see her again no only backing Stalko at the launch of their album Grandiloquence last Sunday at The Orpheum in Gzira, but also on the video for this song by UK-based band Martin McNeil & the Dissidents. I’m now rather curious to see what comes next from Alex Alden. After all she is nominated in two categories on the 2012 MMI Listeners’ Picks Poll – music video and online release.

The Red Model(What’s In) Colonel Gaddafi’s Suitcase
Having all but disappeared for the alternative music scene in Malta for the good part of the last 10 years, former Shostakovitch’s Nightmare drummer Bernard Camilleri returns with UK-based band The Red Model, who have just released debut album Taste the Difference. They will be playing a couple of gigs at the Coach & Horses in Malta to launch the album there too on 7 and 8 December 2012. I’m sure that this band will go down well with local alternative rock fans as well as old SN supporters who will be glad to see the old Gringo thumping the skins in his homeland.

Christabelle CurmiIl-Kappar
While not one of the top songs on this year’s L-Għanja tal-Poplu, I’ve selected this one to remind my faithful podcast listeners that the many titles to chose from on the 2012 MMI Listeners’ Picks Poll include the album for this year’s YTC contest. Christabelle Curmi is one of the more consistent exponents of songs in Maltese and I think that if she’s lucky enough to be given the right song in the (hopefully not too distant) future she could become one of the country’s better known singers of Maltese songs. I believe she has what it takes to join the likes of Mary Spiteri, Maryrose Mallia, Doreen Galea and others like them in time.

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