The shortlist for this year’s Huyundai Mercury Music Prize have been revealed, and include some big names like Noel Gallagher and Lily Allen alongside some less established acts such as Sons Of Kemet and Jorja Smith.
The Mercury prize has a reputation for highlighting some of the most exciting new names in British music, but commentators have been a little disappointed that the majority of the names on this year’s shortlist are already quite established. Whilst few doubt the quality of the recent albums from Noel Gallagher, Lily Allen, Arctic Monkeys, and Florence and the Machine, these artists have all had number one albums and legions of fans. If the purpose of the Mercury Prize is to bring new acts to a wider audience, the shortlist could have been a little more imaginative.
The Mercury Music Prize shortlist 2018
Arctic Monkeys – ‘Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino’
Everything Everything – ‘A Fever Dream’
Everything Is Recorded – ‘Everything Is Recorded’
Florence And The Machine – ‘High As Hope’
Jorja Smith’s – ‘Lost & Found’
King Krule – ‘The Ooz’
Lily Allen – ‘No Shame’
Nadine Shah – ‘Holiday Destination’
Noel Gallagher – ‘Who Built The Moon?’
Novelist – ‘Novelist Guy’
Sons Of Kemet – ‘Your Queen Is A Reptile’
Wolf Alice – ‘Visions Of A Life’
This year’s judges include Clara Amfo (BBC Radio 1), Danielle Perry (Absolute Radio), Ella Eyre, Harriet Gibsone (Guardian Guide), Jamie Cullum, Jeff Smith (BBC 6 Music and Radio 2), Lianne La Havas, Marcus Mumford, Mike Walsh (Radio X), MistaJam – DJ & Broadcaster, Phil Alexander – Creative Director, Kerrang!/Contributing Editor, Mojo, Will Hodgkinson – Chief Rock & Pop Critic, The Times and the Chair of the judging panel Jeff Smith.
The judges said: “This year’s Hyundai Mercury Prize celebrates albums by musicians at all stages of their careers, but with a shared belief in the importance of music for navigating life’s challenges – whether personal or political, falling in or out of love, growing up or looking back, angry or ecstatic. The music here is funny and inspiring, smart and moving. 12 amazing albums!”
The 2018 Awards Show will take place on Thursday 20 September at the Eventim Apollo, Hammersmith and will feature live performances from a number of the shortlisted artists.