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The XX win the Mercury Music Prize

The 2010 Mercury Music Prize was won by London band The XX for their debut album XX. The band were always amongst the favourites, but still seemed somewhat surprised by the news. The band’s front man Oliver Sim said “I don’t know what we were expecting but we weren’t expecting this.”

The award is, of course, worth winning, but does not always translate into massive commercial success. Gomez, Roni Size and more recently Speech DeBelle found that the award didn’t mean much in units shifted. That said, Antony and the Johnsons and Elbow saw sales go through the roof after their award.

The XX will likely find that their music does find an audience. With giftwrapped singles ‘Crystallised’ and ‘VCR’ now likely to be re-released to much more agreeable radio stations, expect the album to hit the top 5 soon. And fair play to them, at least we know they didn’t get where they are today because of their looks.

However, their success must be viewed as a microcosm for what has been a desperately dull year in British music. XX is all right; it’s essentially the same song, and is about as genuine as a toupee on a transvestite. That it was the favourite for so long spoke volumes about the quality of releases available, with perennial rock mid-carders like Biffy Clyro and Laura Marling getting nominated for equally dull efforts. Ah well, there’s always next year.

And before we are accused of turning on a band when they have achieved some success, we’d like to direct you towards an indifferent review from over a year ago. We are nothing if not consistent.


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