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Rudimental score biggest post-Mercury nom sales uplift

By | Published on Wednesday 30 October 2013


So it’s the Mercury Prize tonight, the annual music industry bash that I’m still boycotting from that time they made me eat fish.

Though given that the blogosphere is certain that the Mercury is now definitely one big corporate fuck fest designed solely to tick the boxes of the Barclaycard marketing team’s brand consumer passion-centre-orientated targeted market engagement strategic development plan, they’ll probably be eating caviar and gold-plated foie gras as they await that all important opening of an envelope tonight. And I bet all the Mercury judges are Spotify users too. Cunts.

Though of course, while for Mercury purists the annual album of the year prize should exist to expose truly ground-breaking records from innovative artists to a wider audience (I think we all remember with particular joy the year they gave the prize to M People), for the music industry the Mercury Prize, like all award shows, is about selling more records. And with that in mind it’s time for our annual “which Mercury nominated albums got the biggest sales uplift” report, courtesy of stats we deviously stole from the offices of the Official Chart Company last night.

Of course the sales impact of the Mercury shortlist seems less impressive when more of the nominees have already enjoyed quite a bit of commercial success with their records, plus this year Arctic Monkey’s new album ‘AM’ came out the same week as the noms were announced, so the 321,000 units sold since then don’t really have anything to do with the Mercury nod. Ignoring the Monkeys, Rudimental’s album ‘Home’ has seen the most additional units sold since the Mercury shortlist was published, with 29,000 copies shifted taking its overall sales since the record was release in April to 314,000.

Elsewhere, the Mercury shortlist has resulted in Jake Bugg’s eponymous debut album arriving in 25,600 more homes (which, in itself, is possibly a reason to only use American Express from now on), while Disclosure’s record ‘Settle’ has sold 23,000 more copies since being shortlisted for the Mercury Communications (RIP) award. As for the rest, additional sales since shortlisting are as follows: Foals (7300), Laura Mvula (6500), David Bowie (6200), James Blake (4300), Laura Marling (4100), Jon Hopkins (2800), Savages (2000) and Villagers (1400).

And now some words from OCC boss Martin Talbot, spluttered as he escorted us off the premises (we broke in, remember): “Based on total sales to date, Jake Bugg [having sold 522,800 units in total] is the clear Mercury winner – however, looking at sales since the nominations were announced, Arctic Monkeys should romp home. Who the judges ultimately choose, only time will tell. But what seems clear is that, if the public were choosing, there are four outstanding candidates – Arctic Monkeys, Jake Bugg, Rudimental and Disclosure”.

The Mercury Prize will be presented tonight. And I think we all know who the real winner is going to be. Capitalism, hey? Right on.