Mercury Prize ‘2012: Plan B And Richard Hawley Favourite For Album Of The Year As Shortlist’ Is Revealed

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Plan B's chart-topping soundtrack to the film Ill Manors has been nominated for the 2012 Mercury Prize Album of the Year.

The rapper is joined by Sheffield singer Richard Hawley with his sixth album Standing at the Sky's Edge, as joint favourite to scoop the highly coveted music gong, according to William Hill betting odds.

The full list of artists nominated for the award, which recognises and celebrates music in the UK and has a reputation for highlighting both new talent and more established bands and artists, is below...

The 2012 Albums of the Year are:  
  • Alt-J - An Awesome Wave
  • Ben Howard - Every Kingdom
  • Django Django - Django Django
  • Field Music - Plumb
  • Jessie Ware - Devotion
  • Lianne La Havas - Is Your Love Big Enough?       
  • Michael Kiwanuka - Home Again      
  • Plan B - Ill Manors
  • Richard Hawley - Standing at the Sky’s Edge
  • Roller Trio - Roller Trio
  • Sam Lee - Ground of its Own
  • The Maccabees - Given to the Wild

The shortlist of 12 ‘Albums of the Year’ is chosen by an independent judging panel and "provides a snapshot of the year in music, recognising artistic achievement across a range of music genres".

The announcement was made by presenter and broadcaster Lauren Laverne at London's The Hospital Club on Wednesday.

Simon Frith, Chair of Judges, said: “There are eight debut albums on the list and four albums from more established artists.

"The sheer range of music here celebrates the abiding ability of British musicians to find new ways to explore traditional themes of love and loss while making an exhilarating soundtrack for life in 2012.”

Last year, PJ Harvey pipped Adele to the Mercury Prize with her hit album Let England Shake, making her the only artist to have won the award on more than one occasion (in 2001 and 2011).

The overall winner of the 2012 Prize will be decided and announced at the Barclaycard Mercury Prize Awards Show at the Roundhouse, London, on Thursday 1 November.

PHOTOS: The nominated artists...

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