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Harry Styles, Sam Fender, Little Simz, Wet Leg and more on 2022 Mercury shortlist

By | Published on Tuesday 26 July 2022

Mercury Prize 2022

This year’s Mercury Prize shortlist has been announced, rounding up the twelve absolute best British and Irish albums of the last year. No question. Actually, before you get all annoyed, it is a very strong list this year. I wouldn’t like to have to pick a winner. Maybe let’s all just say that music is the winner and leave it at that, without naming an overall best LP of the year.

But who is on the list? Well, if you want to do a bit of complaining – as I know you like to – maybe focus your attention on Harry Styles, who almost certainly doesn’t need the £25,000 prize money and/or any more recognition.

Also on there are Sam Fender, Little Simz, Joy Crookes, Jessie Buckley & Bernard Butler, Wet Leg, Yard Act, Self Esteem, Kojey Radical and Gwenno. There’s even something approaching metal on there this year, thanks to Nova Twins. And Fergus McCreadie holds up the jazz end of things.

Commenting on all this, the judging panel says: “Getting down to twelve albums this year was not easy, simply because there were so many remarkable ones to choose from”.

“That serves as proof that British and Irish music thrives during unsettled periods in history”, they add, “with the albums chosen covering everything from imaginative pop to pioneering rap to Cornish language folk-rock. We feel that these twelves amazing albums each have something to say artistically and socially, all in their own unique, enriching ways. Now comes the really hard part… choosing only one overall winner”.

They will have to do that though. There are no plans to give the prize to music and call the whole thing off, as far as I know. They’ve booked the venue now, so they’ll probably have to do it. It’s going to take place at the Hammersmith Apollo in London on 8 Sep, where the prize will be handed to its rightful owner, Little Simz. Oh yeah, I changed my mind about picking a winner.

Now, here’s the whole shortlist in handy alphabetical list form:

Fergus McCreadie – Forest Floor
Gwenno – Tresor
Harry Styles – Harry’s House
Jessie Buckley & Bernard Butler – For All Our Days That Tear The Heart
Joy Crookes – Skin
Kojey Radical – Reason To Smile
Little Simz – Sometimes I Might Be Introvert
Nova Twins – Supernova
Sam Fender – Seventeen Going Under
Self Esteem – Prioritise Pleasure
Wet Leg – Wet Leg
Yard Act – The Overload

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