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Chris

Mercury Music Prize

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The nominations have just been announced:

Young Knives, Bat for Lashes, Jamie T, Klaxons, The View, Amy Winehouse, Basquiat Strings featuring Seb Rochford, Dizzee Rascal, New Young Pony Club, Maps, Fionn Regan, Arctic Monkeys

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Guest Steven Dedalus

I know the Mercury is increasingly meaningless, but New Young Pony Club?!?!?!?!?

What is going on?

I just makes me despair for music, it really does.

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Guest Tam o' Shantie

Bat For Lashes should win the award for seeming to be hot at ATP from like 200 feet away while I was heavily intoxicated, then revealing themselves to look weird and unattractive in their Myspace promo shots.

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looks like a mashup of last years entrants too?....(I can't remember).

Amy Winehouse was nominated 2..3 years ago? (that's what made me buy her first LP, her performance that night was spectacular).

I love reading all the haters, it's just indicative of snobbery...

I've actually been informed positively of at least two artists I now listen to, thanks to this "load of shite". (Polar Bear & Winehouse).

fuck you lot of pencil necked blinkered dongs. (he whispered).

open your ears and don't just jump on bandwagons, I dislike most of the "obvious" NME dahlings on the list (every year), but rise above, rise above.

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i think the MMPA is a bit of a waste of time but it did turn me ear to stuff like roni size and dizzee rascal in the past so it aint all bad.

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i hope maps don't win cause the guy sent us an arsey email forcing us to change our name. :(

though they are quite good. damn.

i actually hope the view win because it would be hilarious.

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It's Amy Whinehouse's arrogant nature that sticks in my throat and seemingly thinking it is amusing and "rock'n'roll" to get wasted and pull out of gigs at the last minute. A friend of mine who really likes her but is getting a bit despondant has been hit with this twice including flying to London to see her and found the gig was cancelled that day because she was hung over. He then got it again at T in the park (not sure why she didn't play then, probably wasted again or overdid it on the columbian marching powder once more). I can never be bothered with this "the fans will put up with anything" approach that the likes of nutjob Doherty and the Whinehouse throw out. I can't say I hate their music, just does nothing for me, in fact I find the whole Mercury list this year very inoffensive but then again none if it is my cup of tea and my musical taste is very varied.

Maybe it is just me but this second coming of great British "talent" leaves me very cold, I just don't get it? Give me some of other interesting British acts out there that the press ignore like Skindred, Weapons, McQueen, The Hedrons, The Zico Chain, Exit Ten, Kid Ego & Miss Conduct. Looking forward to seeing lots of interesting up and coming bands in Finland this month, more my kind of scene. Now Korpiklaani and Turisas are what you call folk music!!! hehe.

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looks like a mashup of last years entrants too?....(I can't remember).

Amy Winehouse was nominated 2..3 years ago? (that's what made me buy her first LP, her performance that night was spectacular).

I love reading all the haters, it's just indicative of snobbery...

I've actually been informed positively of at least two artists I now listen to, thanks to this "load of shite". (Polar Bear & Winehouse).

fuck you lot of pencil necked blinkered dongs. (he whispered).

open your ears and don't just jump on bandwagons, I dislike most of the "obvious" NME dahlings on the list (every year), but rise above, rise above.

It's not about jumping on bandwagons. It's not about being blinkered. It's certainly not snobbery. It's the fact that this award seems to be the same stuff every year with whatever the NME's been raving about thrown in with some "left - field" stuff that the massess have never heard of, just to keep it "cutting edge."

The award is a redundant piece of shite decided by a 60 year old country and western fan that artists' labels have to pay to enter. And Talvin "who" Singh won it one year.

Whisper it - some of us have made up our own minds that the Mercury Music Prize is, in fact, a mockery of the British music scene.

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Guest Steven Dedalus

Whisper it - some of us have made up our own minds that the Mercury Music Prize is, in fact, a mockery of the British music scene.

Ho hum, indeed!

I cannot agree more. It just stands as a testament to how meaningless this kind of stuff is. It's a hideous, middle-class, smug-fest.

They should just stop it and be done with it.

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Ho hum, indeed!

I cannot agree more. It just stands as a testament to how meaningless this kind of stuff is. It's a hideous, middle-class, smug-fest.

They should just stop it and be done with it.

I thought you'd have a different opinion steve...

You are looking at this thing from your (and I talk of Marsh too) perspective of a deep knowledge of "underground" music...I know plenty of bands too that should be considered "the cutting edge"...but, you can't see it for the good it can do too, perhaps kids who only think that chart music is the only pop music around might see some of the acts, and then start to explore a bit deeper, and wider might actually get something from it?

So I reitterate the "snobbery" aspect of your points, they are not invalid, but it's evident you don't see the whole picture (I liken it to snobby eliteist artists slagging off the Turner Prize....it's not the be all and end all of cutting edge art, far from it, but 90% of the public won't have heard of the artists nominated). as goes for the musicians we all know and (probably despise) because the seem to us to be 'too popular'...

and then there is just the pain old moaning, because of the "choice" of bands not fitting with your idea of what should be nominated....it's like complaining that big brother is shite....or there's too much porn on the telly (never!) .....just don't watch it, and celebrate your circles that DO promote and champion TRUE cutting edge / representative music ......

I'm hungry....tea time.....mmmm

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The thing I like best about The Mercury Music Awards is the way people get upset about it every year. Great stuff. And that they had the good sense to pick Antony and The Johnsons of course.

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A bit of creative reporting in the Evening Express tonight. Seb Rochford is featured for his work with Basquiat Strings but I can't see any mention of him on their web site. They are both however associated with F-IRE who seem to manage to get someone nominated almost every year!

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A bit of creative reporting in the Evening Express tonight. Seb Rochford is featured for his work with Basquiat Strings but I can't see any mention of him on their web site. They are both however associated with F-IRE who seem to manage to get someone nominated almost every year!

Is the album nominated not entitled 'Basquiat Strings with Seb Rochford'?

Also featuring Emma Smith of Elysian Quartet / Adem / Adrian Crowley 'fame'...

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Is the album nominated not entitled 'Basquiat Strings with Seb Rochford'?

Also featuring Emma Smith of Elysian Quartet / Adem / Adrian Crowley 'fame'...

Hey your right. You'd think I'd have noticed when I bought it from Amazon. Damn the power of the Mercury Music awards. Strange he's not featured on their web site though.

Basquiat also feature Victoria Fifield who we should be seeing more of at the SOUND launch in Sept I think.

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Guest Steven Dedalus
I thought you'd have a different opinion steve...

You are looking at this thing from your (and I talk of Marsh too) perspective of a deep knowledge of "underground" music...I know plenty of bands too that should be considered "the cutting edge"...but, you can't see it for the good it can do too, perhaps kids who only think that chart music is the only pop music around might see some of the acts, and then start to explore a bit deeper, and wider might actually get something from it?

So I reitterate the "snobbery" aspect of your points, they are not invalid, but it's evident you don't see the whole picture (I liken it to snobby eliteist artists slagging off the Turner Prize....it's not the be all and end all of cutting edge art, far from it, but 90% of the public won't have heard of the artists nominated). as goes for the musicians we all know and (probably despise) because the seem to us to be 'too popular'...

and then there is just the pain old moaning, because of the "choice" of bands not fitting with your idea of what should be nominated....it's like complaining that big brother is shite....or there's too much porn on the telly (never!) .....just don't watch it, and celebrate your circles that DO promote and champion TRUE cutting edge / representative music ......

I'm hungry....tea time.....mmmm

Bah! Who do you think you are? Picking holes in my flimsy argument like that....

Ok, fair enough. I agreee with you, and I do recall being enlightned to many an album by yourself that I had just written off. I guess the point I'm making is that I think the whole event lacks relevance and is indicitive of the state of music at the moment. I dare say that none of the acts on the list are that bad (with the humble exception of New Young Pony Club and the View, who I despise as real lowest common denominator, band-wagon stuff), but the problem I have with them is that none of them are really that good either. None of them, in my opinion, are really going to be albums that we will be coming back to in the future. As such, I don't see what the point of supporting them and giving them an elevated platform.

In my eyes, it's sorta like saying, "Here is the best British album of the year! The best of a bad bunch!" I mean, the Young Knives are ok and all, but will anyone really give a hoot in a year's time? It just makes me feel that there is too many albums being released, too many of them are very patchy and below par, and the really good stuff out there is being forgotten. And by making it a British only prize (however tenuous...) sort of makes it even more redundant when you imagine what it would be like if the Americans were inculded on the list. They'd knock the stuffing out of us!

Now, the problem with all my moaning is that it does introduce people to new music, and new connections are made. And it's all a lot of fuss over nothing, and there's no reason to get me this worked up over it. (Although, I do reitterate the point that far from being "unkonwn to 90% of the public" I feel Amy Winehouse, Arctic Monkeys, and possibly even Dizzee Rascal might be a bit well known).

I have a strong reaction against what I'd call "the Guardian Reader" syndrome. Even though I am a Guardian Reader myself. My hatred of all of this is more to do with the fact that every year the Mercury Prize becomes a shopping list for middle class Guardian readers in their 40s who seek to appear cutting edge amongst their peers at dinner parties, etc. I just don't like seeing music reduced to commoddity, and that's what this all represents from me.

Plus, if I wasn't being unreasonalbe and unrealistic, it wouldn't be me....

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