Next Wednesday the Mercury Prize nominees will be announced. This prestigious award is an annual prize awarded to the best album in the UK and Ireland, and is one of the most highly valued accolades around. Previous winners include legends like Arctic Monkeys, Pulp, Dizzee Rascal and last year’s winners Alt-J. So with this huge announcement coming up next week, at The Edge we’ve decided to put together our predictions for the shortlist.
London Grammar are one of the hottest tips for the prize, and with their album being released a mere two days before the nominees are announced, this is no mean feat! Paddy Power currently have the band on 9/4 odds to win out right (which makes them the band with the best odds on their site) Their debut record, If You Wait, is a truly stunning offering, so it would be surprising if it didn’t make an appearance, as arguably the strongest debut album of the year.
David Bowie’s TWENTY-FOURTH(!!!) studio album The Next Day is another record predicted to be in the list. The album received an incredibly positive reception, many outlets talking about what a strong comeback Bowie had made. Paddy Power have this on 11/2 to win outright.
Disclosure’s UK number one debut album Settle is another strong contender. With a whole host of hits like ‘White Noise’, ‘Latch’ and their current single ‘F is For You’, the album is catchy, well-written, and full of intelligent dance and house music.
There are also a couple of controversial cases to consider. One of these is BRITs Critics’ Choice Award winner Tom Odell’s debut Long Way Down, which received considerably mixed reviews. NME slated the record giving it 0/10, which prompted one of the best news stories of the past year, when Odell’s father rang up the magazine to complain. So looking at the reviews, the record shouldn’t really be up there, but you never know! I mean, Spice Girls debut album Spice was nominated in 1997… Another controversial case is whether AM (Artic Monkey’s fifth studio album) will be nominated. The band have previously been nominated twice, and won in 2007 for their debut Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not. But is AM prize worthy?
The impressive debuts by King Krule (6 Feet Beneath the Moon) and CHVRCHES (The Bones of What You Believe) are top contenders for the prize with both records receiving critical acclaim. Rudimental’s debut album Home may also make the shortlist, as one of the most commercially successful UK outfit of the last year. Home features a smorgasbord of huge hits, including the anthemic ‘Feel The Love’, so they really deserve a nod. Other possibilities include Daughter (If You Leave), Laura Marling (Once I Was an Eagle) and Laura Mvula (Sing to the Moon). As for who I think will win it? My money’s on Bowie or London Grammar.
Of course there are always some far-out nominees that a lot of people have never heard of (Speech DeBelle anyone?) so there are sure to be some surprises on the night. Who do you think will be nominated? And who will win outright? Let us know in the comments below!