Malta will be hoping to bounce back from Claudia Faniello’s early exit, as broadcaster PBS has announced a shortlist of the 30 songs that have made it to the next round of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2018.

A total of 129 hopefuls paid the €150 entry fee but only 30 have made the shortlist. The broadcaster now has the difficult task of whittling that shortlist down to just 16 finalists for the grand final of MESC 2018, due to take place sometime in February next year.

Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2018: 30 shortlisted songs

  • Abire Sekkaki – “Casablanca Love”
  • Aidan – “Dai Laga”
  • Aidan – “See You”
  • Avenue Sky – “We Can Run”
  • Brooke Borg – “Heart Of Gold”
  • Christabelle Borg – “Taboo”
  • Dan – “If Only”
  • Danica Muscat – “One Step At A Time”
  • Deborah C – “Turn It Up”
  • Deborah C & Joseph Tabone – “Human”
  • Dominic Cini – “Picture I Draw”
  • Eleanor Cassar – “Back to Life”
  • Ishmael Grech – “Good Times”
  • Jasmine Abela – “Supernovas”
  • Kelsey Bellante – “Super Woman”
  • Kevin Paul Calleja – “Great Adventure”
  • Kimberley Cortis – “Monsters”
  • Kurt Anthony Cassar – “You Will Find Me”
  • Lawrence Gray – “Love Renegade”
  • Malcolm Pisani – “Kiss”
  • Matthew Caruana – “Call 2morrow”
  • Mikhail Attard & Cherylis Camileri – “Breaking Point”
  • Miriana Conte – “Rocket”
  • Nicole Azzopardi – “Mixed Feelings”
  • Petra Whiteford – “Evolution”
  • Raquel Galdes – “In My Mind”
  • Rhiannon Micallef – “Beyond Blue Horizons”
  • Richard Joe Micallef – “Song For Dad”
  • Stefan Galea – “Closer”
  • Tiziana Calleja – “First Time”

Hoping to make it third time lucky is Brooke Borg with her entry “Heart of Gold”. She placed second in MESC 2016, and was a hot favourite this year but ultimately placed fourth with her anthem “Unstoppable”.

Another MESC favourite to return is 2015 runner-up Christabelle Borg, who will compete with “Taboo”.

Richard Micallef has also made the shortlist. He has previously represented Malta at Eurovision 2014 as part of the sibling folk group Firelight, who placed 23rd in Copenhagen with “Coming Home”.

Malta’s Junior Eurovision 2010 star Nicole Azzopardi is graduating to the big show. She’s on the shortlist with “Mixed Feelings”

A couple of MESC veterans are also competing for a place in the 2018 show. Deborah C, who has competed every year since 2012, is back with her solo entry “Turn It Up”. She is also reunited with 2017 duet partner Joseph Tabone on “Human”.

Lawrence Gray — who has been regular participant in MESC for almost 20 years — is back for another try with the dramatically titled “Love Renegade”.

Newcomer Aidan Cassar — whose Eurovision 2017 mash-up went viral — is also on the 30-song shortlist three times. He’s there as a solo artist with his entries “Dai Laga” and “See You”, and he’s part of the group Avenue Sky with “We Can Run”.

Two acts may be familiar from last year’s shortlist of 60. Avenue Sky‘s song “We Can Run” and Jasmine Abela‘s “Supernovas” — neither of which has been publicly released — are both taking another shot for 2018.

The MESC panel is expected to announce the 16 finalists some time in October, while the grand final is due to take place sometime in January. As with last year’s grand final, the winner will be selected by televote alone.

Are you excited by any of the names involved in this year’s Malta Eurovision Song Contest? Who would you like to see in the final? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!

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Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

It can’t be time for MESC song selections already! This year is passing by wayyy too quickly.
A lot of “stars” are on that list. It will be interesting to hear the songs. 🙂

Dan
Guest
Dan

Thanks for Sharing,

With Love,
Dan <3

umerkim
Guest
umerkim

Dan, as in the person singing ‘If Only’?

Dan
Guest
Dan

Yes 😀 That’s me 🙂

umerkim
Guest
umerkim

oh wow, good luck then 😀 !

Dan
Guest
Dan

Thanks 😀 Fingers crossed!

FANNY
Guest
FANNY

Where is Franklin???

Kris
Guest
Kris

Lol!! Dai laga isn’t a Hindi phrase @Robyn

Laga is a Hindi word meaning felt/attach depending on context

Dai is meaningless in Hindi

blondboybc
Guest
blondboybc

No Janice Mangion? Hope she comes back for 2019! And, bring back another Maltese language song! 🙂

Mcallen
Guest
Mcallen

Supernova, Taboo, Heart of Gold and Dai Laga ?

Mcallen
Guest
Mcallen

??**

Mcallen
Guest
Mcallen

Yikes, I mean a heart emoticon.

Chanel stevens
Guest
Chanel stevens

What does dai laga mean

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Scroll down four comments and read to find out!

Chanel stevens
Guest
Chanel stevens

Sounds interesting! Who is the guy ?

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Aidan Cassar – he’s an up-and-coming young Maltese singer. We featured him earlier this year for the ESC 2018 mashup he made.

http://wiwibloggs.com/2017/04/29/skeletons-apollo-aidan-cassars-eurovision-2017-mashup-goes-viral/187647/

Chanel stevens
Guest
Chanel stevens

Sounds good, I hope he’s not in with a ballad though

James
Guest
James

No Maltese song? Me no likey.

Gobio
Guest
Gobio

Lol yet more Deborah C XD
No jessica though ;( , glad to see Christabelle and Jasmine Abela to balance the ballad loaded competition.

Sean loid
Guest
Sean loid

I obviously want Brooke or Christabelle to win!!! But what’s dai laga ???

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Google Translate identifies it as a Hindi phrase meaning “got a chance”. Intriguing!

Sean loid
Guest
Sean loid

That’s awesome! I want it in just for the title lol

Joseff
Guest
Joseff

@robyn who’s got your interest??

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Good question! MESC always interests me because for a small island, they always put such effort into their national selection. All killer, no filler!

* The double diva showdown of Christabelle vs Brooke will be amazing.
* Lawrence Gray is always good quality because of his voice, his hair and his passionate fanbase.
* Nicole Azzopardi’s graduation to ESC
* And I expect to be surprised by the rest 🙂

Josh
Guest
Josh

Some really exciting and interesting names in the mix. Sad there’s no Franklin and Maxine but at least it means some new faces 🙂 Interesting that Kevin Paul Calleja is here… he supported his bro Kurt Calleja with This Is The Night so that might be something upbeat. For a change for Malta in recent years!!!

Calum Macleod
Guest
Calum Macleod

Hope Brooke and Christabelle have fantastic songs.

Geo
Guest
Geo

Another boring dramatic ballad from Malta next year? Hope not….

Owen asyl
Guest
Owen asyl

Let’s hope the newcomers will bring some sass to the show! And Brooke, Christabelle, Jasmine, Aidan… please be good

thespb01
Guest
thespb01

Brooke FTW!

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Is it just me, or does anyone else here think that “Supernova” in any language has been overused as a song title these days?

Where are Chris Grech and Red Electrick? And did Jessika decide to hang it up, after watching 3 of her songs miss the cut following 8 straight years in the contest?

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

After David Guetta and Sia’s “Titanium” in 2011, shouty songs with power adjectives in the titles started showing up in national finals. Malta is always a little behind pop trends, so it makes sense that a song called “Supernova” would still be in MESC 2018.

Patty
Guest
Patty

A nice simple title in ‘Great Adventure’. No powerful adjectives there. Haha. 😀

Pablo
Guest
Pablo

I’ll miss Maxine Pace this year 🙁

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

ff; TWO Deborah C songs, as if she ever had any demand. Brooke and Christabelle are going to be the hot favorites, bookmark me.

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Deborah C. and Aidan both have 2 songs each; but Deborah C’s record in this contest has hardly been encouraging.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Raquel and that astounding accent of hers comes through this time. “Stop Haunting Me” should have made the MESC 2015 final, and I thought it was worthy of a top-5 position. If she doesn’t make it this time, I’d like to see her come with a Maltese-language song for 2019.

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Crap! ;-(

Janice Mangion isn’t in the lineup this time around.

So much for the chances of a Maltese-language song being a hot contender. 🙁

EscAU
Guest
EscAU

oh no my girl janice isn’t back again 🙁 and no maltese songs! I would’ve thought Portugal and Janice’s successes last year would’ve had at least one in Maltese that could’ve won!

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Aye! Last year’s ESC result (a non-English song) would have made Janice the overwhelming favorite at MESC, and more likely, Malta would have sent a Maltese-language song to Lisbon.

Colin
Guest
Colin

Brooke, Rhiannon, Christabelle, Dominic, Jasmine, Richard… can’t wait to hear the songs of the half who are picked!

sephora
Guest
sephora

YASSSSS Christabelle is back with a banggggg! Taboo all the wayyy! Supernovas and Dai laga sound awesome as a title. When will they announce the finalists? Esc officially started ?

Gorilla716
Guest
Gorilla716

Based on the song titles, it looks like all of the songs are in English except for Dai Laga by Aidan. I find this pretty surprising because I thought Portugal’s victory will lead to more songs in native languages.

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Aye. I hope Janice wasn’t one of those who got cut. In my opinion, this is way too early and way too soon to make a judgment on the entries. When are they planning to hold the contest?

Azaad
Guest
Azaad

To be fair though, English is an official language in Malta so I’m guessing some Maltese people speak it as a first language.

Kimmy
Guest
Kimmy

Taboo and Dai laga sound interesting

Jacky
Guest
Jacky

It’s funny, i’m never really that interested in the Maltese selection, but i’ve still found myself reading this thinking “Where’s Janice Mangion!”

And now of course Hamilton Travel has also popped into my mind…

Paul D.
Guest
Paul D.

Always the same people competing LOL

V Duffy
Guest
V Duffy

Jasmine is in slayyyyy girl! I hope Stefan has a better song than light up my life he has a lot of potential <3 and I love to see Aidan too

umerkim
Guest
umerkim

Just noticed Jasmine is on the list with the same song she had last year… interesting.

Anthony Hopkins
Guest
Anthony Hopkins

Raquel Galdes is back! And Brooke is also in the list!!!! Stefan Galea’s song is apparently written by Richard from firelight! Would love to see him on stage again!

umerkim
Guest
umerkim

Jasmine is back YASSSSS, also excited for Brooke & Christabelle. Always happy to see Lawrence Gray on the list, we love a good ballad or 2. Also Eleanor is back after 5 years WHAT? didn’t see that coming.

Joseph G
Guest
Joseph G

Malta go for something modern pleaseeeee you deserve the final! Jasmine, Aidan, Rhiannon, Brooke, Christabelle!!

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

I agree! Malta has so many good singers, but their songs sometimes feel a few years behind the times. If Brooke shows up with another Sia-in-2010-style ballad, she might win MESC, but she won’t impress many viewers in Lisbon.

Joseph G
Guest
Joseph G

They might react positively to Jasmine or Aidan. I remember Jasmine’s Alive very well. I also like Aidan’s latest track bon bon. Christabelle and Brooke both came second in different years.

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

My point is, the problem isn’t the singers – it’s the songs they’re singing. As we saw this year, even an extremely talented singer like Claudia couldn’t give much life to “Breathlessly”.

Brooke’s “Unstoppable” had the dated sound of a ’00s ballad. A singer of her calibre deserves a modern track that will do her justice. 🙂

sephora
Guest
sephora

I agree totally, it’s always same problem with Malta – however let’s hear the songs first, in sure there are improvements from returnees and newcomers

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

From my ears, Brooke’s “Unstoppable” sounded way too reminiscent of Molly Sandén’s “Youniverse” from MelFest 2016.

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Gutted that Franklin isn’t doing MESC this year. He’s apparently taking a break. *cries in Maltese*

esc freak
Guest
esc freak

Me too :/
But never mind, there are many other big names in the line-up.

Nancy G
Guest
Nancy G

I LOVED NICOLE AZZOPARDI AT JESC 2010!!

esc freak
Guest
esc freak

Same!

escDisney Calling
Guest
escDisney Calling

Most excited: Rhiannon, SOMETHING THAT SLAYS MORE THAN FEARLESS PLS

Also excited: Brooke, Jasmine, Miriana

BUT WHERE IS JANINE???!!!!