PJ Harvey Wins Mercury Music Prize

By Tom Breihan / September 6, 2011 - 5:51 pm

Great Britain’s annual Mercury Music Prize is a lot of fun. In the annual ceremony, a panel of music-business figures decides the best British album of the year. They often pick grand-consensus records like Suede’s first album and Pulp’s Different Class, but sometimes they go way off the reservation and pick something weird like Speech Debelle. Not this time, though! Today, the prize went to PJ Harvey’s excellent, much-esteemed wartime concept album Let England Shake.

According to the BBC, the album was the bookmakers’ favorite, which means that a grand and bizarre world of people who bet money on this thing must exist. It’s the second time Harvey’s won the big award, following a 2001 win for Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea. That means Harvey is the first artist ever to win two Mercury Prizes, which sounds about right.

Below, watch a video of Harvey performing “The Words That Maketh Murder” at the Mercury Prize ceremony.