The UK music industry comes together every year to celebrate the greatest albums and the musicians that created them.
Since it’s founding in 1992, The Mercury prize has been awarded each year to the best album released by a UK artist. The prize is the music world equivalent to the Booker Prize for literature. Twelve Albums are short listed– just like with literary works. One is finally chosen to receive the prize, deeming the album the “best of the best.”
Sampha’s debut album “Process” took the Mercury Prize this year. Coming out on top of the eleven other shortlisted albums. The win puts him among an impressive list of previous winners: PJ Harvey, Arctic Monkeys, The xx, and many more. The South London-native collaborated with legends like Frank Ocean and Kanye West before he was ready to release the critically acclaimed “Process” this February.
Being shortlisted might seem like an arbitrary process, considering the nominated albums have to meet very few criteria. There are no stipulations on genre or number of previous albums, only what the judges deem the best quality. Most of the shortlisted albums came from rock and r&b and hip hop categories, but pop– with Ed Sheeran’s “Divide” and jazz–with Dinosaur’s “Together as One” were also represented.
The 2017 Shortlisted Albums:
alt-j – ‘”Relaxer”
Blossoms – “Blossoms”
Dinosaur – “Together, As One”
Ed Sheeran -“÷”
Glass Animals – ”How to Be a Human Being”
J Hus – ”Common Sense”
Kate Tempest – ”Let Them Eat Chaos”
Loyle Carner – ”Yesterday’s Gone”
Sampha – ”Process”
Stormzy – ”Gang Signs & Prayer”
The Big Moon – ”Love in the 4th Dimension”
The xx – ”I See You”