AMP announce shortlist
Listed in no particular order, The Coopers AMP are pleased to welcome the following artist albums to the shortlist:
Flume - Flume
Tame Impala - Lonerism
The Presets – Pacifica
Grand Salvo - Slay Me In My Sleep
Jess Ribeirio & The Bone Collectors - My Little River
Liz Stringer - Warm In the Darkness
Daily Meds - Happy Daze
Hermitude - Hyper-Paradise
Urthboy - Smokey’s Haunt
From a field of more than 300 Australian artist albums of 2012, The Coopers AMP judging panel painstakingly arrived at a list of 71 official entrants for the highly revered and hotly contested 8th Australian Music Prize. From there, numbers were crunched and heartstrings pulled with the view of once again narrowing the field to just nine shortlisted artist albums. After much debate, deliberation and even dispute, the votes are in and the list of shortlisted contenders is finally here.
Scott Murphy, Founder and Prize Director commends the judges for the selection: “Hats off to the judges – for the past 6 months they have been giving up their free time to listen, listen and listen. They chose a whopping 71 albums to form the Longlist – clearly showing that the judges thought 2012 was a great year for great Australian music.
“Although it was a big commitment of their time and passion, the feedback from the judges favours the new entry/judging system that we put into place in 2012. The judges all fully support all 9 titles making this Shortlist and have stressed to me that there were in fact many more titles that they were individually passionate about but that obviously couldn’t be squeezed in – of note, albums by these artists narrowly missed the final cut: Alpine, Bearhug, Bored Nothing, Dirty Three, Pataphysics and Sarah Blasko.”
Dominating triple j’s recent Hottest 100 countdown, with four tracks making the cut, Flume adds another feather to his cap upon being shortlisted for The 8th Australian Music Prize for his self-titled debut album. A succession of assured singles made way for a #2 ARIA Chart debut, Gold sales for both the album and leading single Holdin’ On and an absolute slew of praise along the way, including 4.5 stars in Rolling Stone.
Fellow triple j Hottest 100 heavyweights, Tame Impala have also staked their claim. With a swirling haze of classic pop melody and modern, experimental soundscapes, Tame Impala’s sophomore offering ‘Lonerism’ cast its spell over fans and critics far and wide. The band’s ever-growing mantle includes NME’s Best Album of 2012, triple j’s J Award for Best Album of the Year, Top 10 nods in Pitchfork and The Guardian and now, a place in The Coopers AMP shortlist.
Following indie-electro staples ‘Beams’ and ‘Apocalypso’, The Presets’ third full-length album ‘Pacifica’ sees the band boldly venture into new, uncharted territory. An album that has also taken The Coopers AMP judges along for the ride, The Presets are welcomed to the shortlist for an inspired collection of prismatic and synth-laced songs, which boast equal parts energy and emotion.
From synth-laden to intricate-folk, The Coopers AMP have let their ears venture wide when welcoming Melbourne’s Grand Salvo. Set to expansive and joyous instrumentation, ‘Slay Me In My Sleep’ is Grand Salvo’s sixth studio offering. After being announced on the shortlist earlier this week, Grand Salvo delighted fans at Amp Alive with an enchanting performance which saw him backed by a small choir and string section. The album itself tells the tale of strange love with vivid detail, whimsy and beauty, in true Grand Salvo fashion.
Jess Ribeiro & The Bone Collectors also took to the stage at Amp Alive, showcasing the raw energy and rootsy drive that saw them land in the shortlist. Having already picked up the Jagermeister AIR Award for Best Independent Country Album, the group’s debut album ‘My Little River’ offers up a range of dusty ballads that are timeless, simple and yet, ever consuming.
Also an active and integral contributor to Melbourne’s thriving singer-songwriter scene, Liz Stringer was hard to overlook for The Coopers AMP shortlist with her fourth album ‘Warm In The Darkness’. A barnstorming and melodic ride with storytelling at its heart, the album pays homage to the great pop-rock traditions of our time and is widely tipped Stringer’s most confident and accomplished work to date.
The Coopers AMP this year have held strong in believing Australian Hip Hop is world-class, welcoming a few staples to the shortlist. Blending politically charged, rapid flow lyricism, large bass-driven beats and up-front female vocals, least of those are Daily Meds whose debut LP ‘Happy Daze’ has landed itself the nod. Deeply rooted in hip hop ethos, the self-produced album is lauded for lyrical dexterity and a sound that references both the past and the future of hip hop in Australia.
With single ‘Speak of the Devil’ leading the way on dancefloors across the country, Hermitude’s fourth full-length album ‘Hyper-Paradise’ was always expected to showcase some of the best beats in the business. Following an electrifying performance at Amp Alive, proving that this duo can no longer be pigeon-holed into hip hop, Hermitude have also claimed their rightful place in The Coopers AMP shortlist with an album that goes far beyond the hype.
Joining his Elefant Traks label buddies Hermitude on The Coopers AMP shortlist, Sydney-based MC Urthboy steps up to the plate with fourth solo album ‘Smokey's Haunt’. Featuring collaboration from the likes of Daniel Merriweather, Sparkadia-frontman Alex Burnett and Solo (Horrorshow), the album is hailed Urthboy’s finest to date, lyrically spanning party nights to politics and everything in between. Urthboy rounds out the healthy showing that Aussie Hip Hop has on this year’s shortlist.
The judges will be back to work later this month, when they will decided the who will receive the $30,000 prize money courtesy of principal partner PPCA, will be crowned the winner of The Coopers AMP on March 7th.