James Blake bags Mercury Prize 2013 for album Overgrown
Electronica soloist beats competition from Arctic Monkeys, Laura Mvula, Foals, Disclosure and Jake Bugg
This article is from 2013.
It was a shortlist sniffed at for being too mainstream and safe, but this year’s Mercury Prize awards still managed to surprise (at least a little) with Goldsmiths graduate James Blake pipping bookies’ favourite, singer-songwriter Laura Mvula, to the post to win the top prize. The London-based electronic music producer and singer was previously nominated for his self-titled debut album in 2011 – but this year struck gold (and bagged the £20,000 prize) with his recent album Overgrown, which judges described as ‘late night music for the digital age.’
The 12 albums shortlisted this year included established acts such as David Bowie’s first album in over a decade, The Next Day, and Arctic Monkeys’ critically acclaimed album AM; they were nominated alongside Jake Bugg, Disclosure, Foals, Rudimental, Jon Hopkins, Laura Marling, Savages and Villagers.
Blake was announced as the winner during a live televised ceremony hosted by Lauren Laverne, at the Roundhouse in London.
His acceptance speech was short and sweet, with him briefly thanking his mum and dad for teaching him ‘self-sufficiency.’