Minimal electronics, warm, folky, slightly bitter vocals, and bits that sound like Beirut
The trick, it seems, to bagging yourself a Mercury nomination is to mix up as many things as possible that shouldn’t go together, but somehow do. This year, check Alt-J and Django Django. Back in 2010 it was Villagers. ‘The Waves’ combines minimal electronics, warm, folky, slightly bitter vocals, and bits that sound like Beirut. Then it turns in on itself and expires in a fit of aggression and guitar squalls. All you need now is a rap cameo.