HITS Daily Double


UMG U.K. labels Virgin EMI and Fiction and indie Young Turks have two entries each in the shortlist of 12 albums nominated for the Hyundai Mercury Prize this year. The ceremony takes place in London on 9/14, with BBC and Apple Music providing promo might.

The Hyundai Mercury Prize Albums of the Year aims to celebrate and promote the best of U.K. music, recognising artistic achievement across a range of contemporary music genres. An independent judging panel of musicians, music journalists, presenters and broadcasters created the shortlist.

There are two debut albums in the shortlist from Ted Cockle’s Virgin EMI: indie pop band Blossoms for their self-titled #1, and young hip-hop act Loyle Carner for Yesterday’s Gone. Over at Jim Chancellor's Fiction, spoken-word artist Kate Tempest is nominated for second album, Let Them Eat Chaos, alongside four-piece band The Big Moon for their first effort, Love in the 4th Dimension. David Joseph's UMG U.K. had the most nominees last year, too, with three Polydor releases. The ultimate winner was indie grime act Skepta with Konnichiwa (BBK).

Beggars label Young Turks, led by Cauis Pawson, has the debut from soulful singer/songwriter Sampha, Process, and the third (and second #1) album from downtempo trio The xx, I See You.

Ed Sheeran is a surprising mainstream entry with ÷ (Atlantic), and there's another Warner-distributed act (through ADA) with the debut from fast-rising rapper Stormzy, Gang Signs & Prayer (#Merky).

Sony has one mention with the first album from hip-hop solo artist J Hus, Common Sense (Black Butter). BMG is in there with the third album from alternative guitar band alt-j, Relaxer (Infectious). Indie shortlisters are jazz band Dinosaur with Together, As One (Edition Records), and the second album from indie rock band Glass Animals, How to Be a Human Being (Wolf Tone).