Clubland 21 Surely?: The Mercury Music Prize 2012

Tomorrow is a very exciting day for fans of musical awards shows without an obligatory Rihanna performance/a meat dress as the Barclaycard Mercury Music Prize nominations get announced. Unlike previous years, this years ceremony had been pushed back a few months until Autumn, which means that these are the best albums of the last fifteen or so months. Naturally, there has been a large amount of speculation as to which ten albums will receive a nomination. Here are the predictions as to which albums will receive a nod tomorrow.

The Bookies Favourites

The hot favourite to receive a nomination tomorrow is An Awesome Wave by Alt-J. The indie quartet have been the hot favourite to win the award since July, and before betting closed for nominations, the bad were sitting pretty with odds of 6/4. Despite only reaching nineteen in the charts this year, the album was praised by critics and in turn scored a Metacritic score of seventy-two. Also riding high with them are psychedelic rockers Django Django, who’s self-titled album had odds of 4/1. Much like Alt-J’s album, this album failed to set the charts alight, but it was eaten up by the critics, receiving a five star review in The Guardian and a Metacritic score of eighty-four. The final album to gain the backing of the bookies is Our Version of Events by Emeli Sande, which had odds of 6/1. The biggest selling album of the year thus far, Olympic Ceremony-staple not only caught the public’s attention, it received almost unanimous praise from critics.

The Chart-Botherers 

Despite being a firm favourite in the early stages, Florence + The Machine’s second album Ceremonials has lost steam odds-wise recently, but that shouldn’t stop it receiving a nomination. Unlike the Emeli Sande album which was also huge, Ceremonials is a ‘direct impact’ album, which could hinder it’s chances (in that it may have ‘gotten old’ to many listeners). However, it’s one of the best albums of 2011, and received a score of seventy-six on Metacritic. Another huge seller that could get a nomination is by Ed Sheeran. The undoubted break-out star of 2011, Sheeran fused rap and acoustic guitars on his début album. Despite not being the most interesting album or popstar of recent times, this album went to number one, and received a respectable score of sixty-seven on Metacritic. Another shoe-in is Coldplay, who released their fifth album Mylo Xyloto in 2011. Since then, the album has sold well over a million copies, and the band have headlined another sell-out stadium tour. Despite scoring sixty-five on Metacritic, this album could lose out as it’s no secret that Coldplay have lost their previous ‘cool’ label.

The Outsiders

Although this was only released a matter of weeks ago, Devotion by Jessie Ware could be the dark horse this year. Undoubtedly the most sophisticated album of the year, this album has been heavily praised by the critics, even managing to get a five star review in NOW Magazine. Although it’s recent release means that it hasn’t picked up steam yet, the album itself is not something you’d bet against come the awards day. Another outside chance comes from Bright Light Bright Light, who’s independently released début Make Me Believe In Hope wowed critics earlier this year. Despite minimal chart success, this collection of sophisticated pop songs could create an upset for albums by more household names. Another artist with an outside chance is Lianne La Havas, who’s album Is Your Love Big Enough? is the best soul album of the last year. The chance of this getting a nomination is small, but if Corinne Bailey Rae’s second album can do it then there’s no reason why this won’t.

So there you have it. You’re probably wondering where the the tenth album is. That space is reserved an instrumental album by a shepherd that plays the piano over looped animal noises. There may or many not actually be an album like this, but The Mercury’s like to throw a random one in.



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