Music

Mercury Prize Announces the 12 Best British Albums of the Year

The UK's 12 best albums are proposed in a shortlist made by the prestigious Mercury Prize.

The prestigious Mercury Prize has announced their top 12 UK albums from the past year to date. Announced this morning, in partnership with BBC Radio 6, this year's list shows the breadth of new and interesting music coming out of Great Britain. Previous winners of the Mercury Prize include Stormzy, Primal Scream, the xx, Skepta, Elbow, Pulp, M People, and other esteemed acts. Previously lauded for its eclecticism and support of the independent music industry, winners have often gained greatly from the exposure and acclaim that the Mercury Prize brings.

The winner is anyone's guess. There have been many surprises over the past 28 years, such as Ms Dynamite's victory over the Streets, David Bowie, the Coral, and Doves in 2002; or Speech Debelle's 2009 triumph over Florence + The Machine and Kasabian. The bookies' favourites are Michael Kiwanuka and Stormzy's releases; however, I would keep an eye out for Sports Team and Laura Marling as likely winners.

This year's nominees have been reacting to their place in the shortlist of Britain's best dozen. Michael Kiwanuka said, "It's mind-blowing, the Mercury Prize, as we all know, is the thing that supports music as an art form. It's something that really means a lot to me. I'm excited." Mercury Prize has tweeted a series of videos showing artists' reactions to their nominations as well as detailing what the prize means to them.

The panel choosing this year's winner is a worthy collection of industry performers and experts. Musicians such as Anna Calvi, Jamie Cullum, Jorja Smith, and Gaz Coombes of Supergrass fame will all cast votes alongside leaders in British journalism from Vice, Mojo, and The Times.

A full alphabetical list of nominees is below and the overall winner will be announced on the 10th of September 2020.

  1. Anna Meredith - FIBS
  2. Charli XCX - How I'm Feeling Now
  3. Dua Lipa - Future Nostalgia
  4. Georgia - Seeking Thrills
  5. Lanterns on the Lake - Spook the Herd
  6. Laura Marling - Song For Our Daughter
  7. Kano - Hoodies All Summer
  8. Michael Kiwanuka - KIWANUKA
  9. Moses Boyd - Dark Matter
  10. Porridge Radio - Every Bad
  11. Sports Team - Deep Down Happy
  12. Stormzy - Heavy Is the Head
Music


Books


Film


Television


Recent
Television

Padma Lakshmi's 'Taste the Nation' Questions What, Exactly, Is American Food

Can food alone can undo centuries of anti-immigrant policies that are ingrained in the fabric of the American nation? Padma Lakshmi's Taste the Nation certainly tries.

Film

Performing Race in James Whale's 'Show Boat'

There's a song performed in James Whale's musical, Show Boat, wherein race is revealed as a set of variegated and contradictory performances, signals to others, a manner of being seen and a manner of remaining hidden, and it isn't "Old Man River".

Music

The Greyboy Allstars Rise Up to Help America Come Together with 'Como De Allstars'

If America could come together as one nation under a groove, Karl Denson & the Greyboy Allstars would be leading candidates of musical unity with their funky new album, Como De Allstars.

Music

The Beatles' 'Help!' Redefined How Personal Popular Music Could Be 55 Years Ago

Help! is the record on which the Beatles really started to investigate just how much they could get away with. The album was released 55 years ago this week, and it's the kick-off to our new "All Things Reconsidered" series.

Music

Porridge Radio's Mercury Prize-Nominated 'Every Bad' Is a Wonderful Epistemological Nightmare

With Every Bad, Porridge Radio seduce us with the vulnerability and existential confusion of Dana Margolin's deathly beautiful lyricism interweaved with alluring pop melodies.

Music

​​Beyoncé's 'Black Is King' Builds Identity From Afrofuturism

Beyoncé's Black Is King's reliance on Afrofuturism recuperates the film from Disney's clutches while reclaiming Black excellence.

Reading Pandemics

Colonial Pandemics and Indigenous Futurism in Louise Erdrich and Gerald Vizenor

From a non-Native perspective, COVID-19 may be experienced as an unexpected and unprecedented catastrophe. Yet from a Native perspective, this current catastrophe links to a longer history that is synonymous with European colonization.

Music

John Fullbright Salutes Leon Russell with "If the Shoe Fits" (premiere + interview)

John Fullbright and other Tulsa musicians decamped to Leon Russell's defunct studio for a four-day session that's a tribute to Dwight Twilley, Hoyt Axton, the Gap Band and more. Hear Fullbright's take on Russell's "If The Shoe Fits".

Music

Roots Rocker Webb Wilder Shares a "Night Without Love" (premiere + interview)

Veteran roots rocker Webb Wilder turns back the hands of time on an old favorite of his with "Night Without Love".

Film

The 10 Best Films of Sir Alan Parker

Here are 10 reasons to mourn the passing of one of England's most interesting directors, Sir Alan Parker.

Music

July Talk Transform on 'Pray for It'

On Pray for It, Canadian alt-poppers July Talk show they understand the complex dualities that make up our lives.

Music

With 'Articulation' Rival Consoles Goes Back to the Drawing Board

London producer Rival Consoles uses unorthodox approaches on his latest record, Articulation, resulting in a stunning, beautiful collection.

Film

Paranoia Goes Viral in 'She Dies Tomorrow'

Amy Seimetz's thriller, She Dies Tomorrow, is visually dazzling and pulsating with menace -- until the color fades.

Music

MetalMatters: July 2020 - Back on Track

In a busy and exciting month for metal, Boris arrive in rejuvenated fashion, Imperial Triumphant continue to impress with their forward-thinking black metal, and death metal masters Defeated Sanity and Lantern return with a vengeance.

Books

Isabel Wilkerson's 'Caste' Reveals the Other Kind of American Exceptionalism

By comparing the American race-based class system to that of India and Nazi Germany, Isabel Wilkerson makes us see a familiar evil in a different light with her latest work, Caste.

Film

Anna Kerrigan Prioritizes Substance Over Style in 'Cowboys'

Anna Kerrigan talks with PopMatters about her latest film, Cowboys, which deviates from the common "issues style" approach to LGBTQ characters.

Music

John Fusco and the X-Road Riders Get Funky with "It Takes a Man" (premiere + interview)

Screenwriter and musician John Fusco pens a soulful anti-street fighting man song, "It Takes a Man". "As a trained fighter, one of the greatest lessons I have ever learned is to walk away from a fight without letting ego get the best of you."

Books

'Run-Out Groove' Shows the Dark Side of Capitol Records

Music promoter Dave Morrell's memoir, Run Out Groove, recalls the underbelly of the mainstream music industry.

Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews

Features
Collapse Expand Features
PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.