The winner of the Barclaycard Music Prize 2009 will be announced at the Grosvenor Hotel in London tonight (September 8). Florence And The Machine is currently the favourite, with Betfair quoting odds of 3-1. Friendly Fires (pictured) are outsiders at 11-1.
Among the other nominees for this year’s Mercury Prize was Bat For Lashes, for her acclaimed second album ‘Two Suns’. She missed out in 2007, despite being nominated. This year she’s one of the favourites, with Betfair quoting odds of 8-1.
The Horrors are also among the nominees, getting the nod for their critically-adored second album, ‘Primary Colours’. They’re popular with bookies too – Betfair have them at 7-1.
No-one seems to think Kasabian will win with ‘West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum’ – Betfair have them as 18-1 outsiders. The received wisdom is that Kasabian are “too mainstream” to please the judges – although that didn’t stop M People winning back in 1994.
Speech Debelle is bookies’ second favourite to win the Mercury, at 4-1. The South London rapper is known for her warm, neurotic, wild-child raps, often scribbled down on night buses and trains. ‘Speech Therapy’ is her debut album.
The Invisible began as the solo project of jazz musician Dave Okumu before developing into a full band ahead of their self-titled debut album, which was released in March this year following a string of low-key single releases. They are rank outsiders to win the Mercury at 35-1.
Glasvegas could be worth a punt at 15-1 – they released their self-titled debut album of shimmery, epic, Jesus And Mary Chain-influenced rock last year, and have been steadlily growing in stature since then.
Electro duo La Roux are currently at 11-1 according to Betfair. Though dominated by singer Ellie Jackson and her distinctive quiff, the group also features composer and producer Ben Langmaid, who, similar to Goldfrapp’s William Gregory, prefers to stay in the background.
Led Bib’s ‘Sensible Shoes’ is this year’s token jazz nomination – but it’s highly unlikely to win, which is why Betfair are quoting long odds of 54-1.
Having already bagged the Critics Choice at this year’s BRIT Awards, plus the coveted opening slot on the Shockwaves NME Awards Tour, Florence And The Machine has been tipped for success all year – and many predict she will cap her amazing year with a Mercury win. She’s clear favourite at 3-1.
Lisa Hannigan is at 11-1 with her folky album ‘Sea Sew’. Among those tipping Hannigan to win is Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody, who toured with her a few years ago (she sang live vocals on ‘Set The Fire To The Third Bar’).
London trio Sweet Billy Pilgrim are also outiders, at 35-1. For news, photos and comment on the Mercury Prize 2009, stick with NME.COM – we’ll be announcing the winner around 10pm, Tuesday 8 September.