The Polaris Music Prize longlist has been winnowed down to ten contenders, and there are a fair few impressive records in the running.
The award, designed to honour albums by Canadian artists, comes with a $30,000 booty. Grimes’ highly idiosyncratic Visions is definitely our pick of the bunch, although we’ve also got some residual affection for Drake’s Take Care. The other picks range from big-league indie-pop (Feist’s Metals) to po-faced hip-hop (Cadence Weapon’s Hope In Dirt City) to melodramatic punk (Fucked Up’s David Comes To Life). As ever with these sort of lists, the lesser known artists seem to have been flushed out in favour of the higher profile acts. That said, commiserations to Azari & III and Leonard Cohen, neither of whom made the cut.
Previous winners include Caribou’s Andorra and Arcade Fire’s The Suburbs. The ceremony will take place on September 24 in Toronto’s Masonic Temple. Note: the shortlist was announced in the city’s Drake Hotel – perhaps an auspicious sign for one particularly well-to-do competitor?
Cadence Weapon – Hope in Dirt City
Cold Specks – I Predict a Graceful Expulsion
Drake – Take Care
Kathleen Edwards – Voyageur
Feist – Metals
Fucked Up – David Comes to Life
Grimes – Visions
Handsome Furs – Sound Kapital
Japandroids – Celebration Rock
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan – YT//ST