Last night the winner of the £20,000 Mercury Prize was announced.
For the second time in her career PJ Harvey came away with the award, this time it was for her album Let England shake.
I’m quite glad she got it. I didn’t think she would, with Adele’s record-breaking success with 21 I thought the soul songstress stood a pretty good chance.
If not her then I believed it likely that either Katy B or Tinie Tempah would get it (much to my displeasure). Perhaps if this was voted for by the public, but it is down to (what I picture to be) really pretentious, arrogant and rather isolated music critics.
Often, the critics make the wrong choice, The xx did win it last year and they’re music sounds just as pretentious and arrogant as the critics that judged them.
Honestly, who wants to listen to someone mumbling through an excess of drums. Their whole album sounded like the wanted to anywhere that wasn’t the studio.
However this year I think the right choice was made. While Adele has enjoyed huge success this year, her song themes are a bit repetitive and her vocals are not to be listened to in large quantities. I do like Rolling In The Deep and Someone Like You but I don’t like the album.
Katy B does have some catchy tracks, but I don’t think they mean anything. To me they sound like she made a record for the sake of making a record. And I just don’t like Tinie Tempah.
This is where PJ Harvey is so different from her fellow nominees. Let England Shake is a collection of eclectic tracks, all of which seem to have been thought out right down to the last blow of the hunting horn.
The thing that strikes me, more than anything, is that her career has spanned 20 odd years and she still loves music enough to experiment with it. I wish more people had her passion.
In other news, last night was supposed to be a historical one for the Mercury Prize. Organisers had managed to get all the nominees to agree to perform at the ceremony but because of a particularly bad bout of bronchitis (the same one that forced her to pull out of two tour dates last week) Adele had to cancel her appearance on stage.
She still managed to turn up for the ceremony though.
The list of the nominees:
Metronomy- The English Riviera
Everything Everything- Man Alive
Ghostpoet- Peanut Butter Blues And Melancholy Jam
Anna Calvi- Anna Calvi
Tinie Tempah- Disc-Overy
Elbow- Build A Rocket Boys!
Gwilym Simcock- Good Days At Schloss Elmau
James Blake- James Blake
PJ Harvey- Let England Shake
Katy B- On A Mission
King Creosote & Jon Hopkins- Diamond Mine
Who did you want to win?