Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Commentary from Revitalised Nineties Stars to an Electro Deity, These Choices Avoid the Obvious

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Commentary from Revitalised Nineties Stars to an Electro Deity, These Choices Avoid the Obvious

Article excerpt

Byline: David Smyth

BEFORE the Mercury Prize winner generates the big argument, the shortlist itself is invariably a wide-ranging, intriguing selection that offers much of value to even the nerdiest music fan.

This year's dozen eschews the obvious, with Florence + The Machine's How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful the only No 1 album featured. Florence Welch's third release adds pizzazz to the list but doesn't push her grandiose sound forward enough to make it a serious contender.

Aphex Twin, a deity in the electronic world, will be the other familiar name to many. His Syro album sounds exactly like himself, including beyond-parody song titles such as fz pseudotimestretch+e+3. His nomination could simply be a pat on the back for de-mothballing himself for his first album in 13 years.

There are other revitalised Nineties names in the shape of Gaz Coombes of Supergrass and Roisin Murphy, formerly of Moloko. When most of us had stopped looking in their direction, both have come up with ambitious, surprising solo albums. …

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