The Mercury Prize nominations are just 24 hours away, here Getintothis selects our runners and riders for the 2013 honour.
Wednesday is Mercury Prize Day.
Yep, at around 5.30pm industry types will gather together in London for a spot of hobnobery and around 90 seconds later all huff, puff and start googling a jazz act no-one’s ever heard of. There’s a certain comfort in the symmetry of it all.
In keeping with tradition, Getintothis is having our annual stab at which 12 albums will make the final cut – we’re hoping to improve on 2012’s six and record seven in 2011. But given we’re compiling this in about 20 minutes, we’ll be lucky to select four.
Anyways, here goes…
The big indie two:
We alluded to it last year, but UK bands with guitars are having a good time of it – and there’s once again a raft of artists that could make up the ‘6Music’ slot.
Peace, Everything Everything – and even Liverpool’s Outfit – are firmly in the running, but we’re going for safer bets Foals (simply because they’re now festival headline material and the UK needs big guitar bands; it’s the way the industry survives) and Savages (simply because they’re urgent, buzz-worthy and positively bleed Mercury).
We hope we’re wrong, and Outfit are given the nod, Performance deserves it.
The old bastard:
There’s only been one old bastard omniscient in 2013, and we’re not talking Pope Benedict XVI. David Bowie‘s inclusion in the Mercury is surely a shoe-in, and such is his majesty in presiding over all things music, we wouldn’t put it past the judging panel to hand him the winner’s cheque. But that’d be a cruel on all those skint new artists, wouldn’t it?
See also Primal Scream, Johnny Marr, Suede and I Am Kloot. But the lads can pretty much forget it with big Dave around.
The pop pick:
Laura Mvula is another very Mercury artist. Oodles of broadsheet inches have been spent waxing lyrical over her debut Once I Was An Eagle. And in the absence of any other notable, and vaguely creditable, pop pick we’re sold on Miss Mvula.
The critical fave:
We genuinely don’t think anyone listens to These New Puritans but journalists. Last time round their 2010 album Hidden was named NME album of the year, and still managed to sell only 214 copies and miss out on a Mercury nomination. The panel will deem their omission from the shortlist a real faux pas, so will be making up big time by including third LP Field Of Reeds purely for the fact it’s a whopping classical opus which is all the more impenetrable.
To balance the books, perma-loved, perma-nominated and never perm-haired, 23-year-old, Laura Marling will be handed her 37th Mercury nomination for her 89th album.
The electronic dude corner:
The Mercury’s love a clever dude with a laptop. It shows the judges can empathise with a lonely, middle-class dude cooped up with little but his mouse, an expensive set of headphones and a box of Kleenex. Ever since Talvin Singh scooped the Prize back in 1999 there’s been a raft of blokes fitting the demographic. This time round, 2011 nominee Jon Hopkins is tailor-made for the Mercury, and his record Immunity is one of the year’s best.
If the judges want to get really nifty, they could add Public Service Broadcasting – three dudes making clever electronica for the price of one.
The MASSIVE chart sensation:
Without an Adele or a Florence, or some similar lung-buster to slot into that bulbous round hole we’re opting for a slight curveball from the panel this year – nope, not Tom Odell (simply too dull, even for the Mercury), not Biffy Clyro (simply too loud, certainly for the Mercury) or Bastille (definitely too shite, even for the Mercury) – we’re opting for chart-slaying electro monsters Rudimental. Don’t underestimate this lot.
EDM is right at the forefront of everything right now. It has been for almost a decade. But that didn’t stop last year’s panel from omitting every dance record from the list in it’s entirety. Silly, naughty judges.
This year their spoilt for choice and such is the weight of 2013’s releases they’d look pretty daft if they ignored the obvious raft of new dance talent. Boards Of Canada, Zomby and Darkstar are all possibilities but we’ll go for safer bets Disclosure and bookies favourites London Grammar.
Fuck Buttons are still too naughty for even these repentant judges.
The breakthrough success:
Every year, there’s one band who manages to quietly eke into everyone’s consciousness barely without knowing. This year, that band is Daughter. There they are in soft focus in a BBC studio at Glastonbury. There they are soundtracking a slightly harrowing socio-economic documentary on Channel 4. There they are being primed for a John Lewis advert. There they are on the Mercury Prize nominations list…
Token folk/jazz/unknown bods:
Last year we genuinely thought the panel were going to dispense with the tiring rigmarole of nominating some inbred that specialises in the nose-flute while bashing a tambourine with a five-legged piglet. But then they went and nominated Sam Lee.
This year, we’re hoping they pick Melt Yourself Down whose exhaustive jazz racket manages to straddle so many end-of-the-spectrum oddities that it kinda fits their remit. This, however, is more of a vain hope than a genuine informed selection, primarily because we haven’t a clue who the latest nose-flautist is.
So here’s Getintothis’ Mercury Prize predictions:
Melt Yourself Down: Melt Yourself Down
Laura Marling: Once I Was An Eagle
David Bowie: The Next Day
Jon Hopkins: Immunity
Daughter: If You Leave
Foals: Holy Fire
Savages: Silence Yourself
Laura Mvula: Sing To The Moon
These New Puritans: Field Of Reeds
London Grammar: If You Wait
Paddy Power‘s Mercury Prize 2013 latest odds can be found here.
The shortlist will be revealed by Lauren Laverne at The Hospital Club in London at 5.30pm on September 11, with television coverage of the event to be broadcast the following night on Channel 4.
Further Mercury Prize reading on Getintothis
Alt J win Mercury Prize 2012 – What have we learnt?
Mercury Prize 2012 nominees announced.
The Getintothis Predictometer for the Barclaycard Mercury Prize 2012.
PJ Harvey wins the Mercury Prize 2011 – what have we learnt?
A Getintothis reflection on the nominees for the 2011 Mercury Prize.
The Getintothis Predictometer for the Barclaycard Mercury Prize 2011
Getintothis on the Mercury‘s 2010 and why common sense prevailed.
Getintothis on the Mercury‘s in 2009… and reaction.
Getintothis on the Mercury‘s in 2008.
Getintothis on the Mercury‘s in 2007 – why bother? and 2007’s worthy winners, not that we were arsed.