British rapper Dave wins UK’s Mercury Prize as PM gets slammed

Lawrence Kim
September 20, 2019

A thought-provoking reflection on his upbringing in London, it has been hailed as "the boldest and best British rap album in a generation".

This year's shortlist of 12 included albums by rock bands Foals and The 1975, and singer-songwriter Nao.

Released in March, Psychodrama entered the United Kingdom charts at number one and has sold 129,354, copies to date.

The musician screamed "f*** Boris" before his Mercury Prize performance.

Before he walked on stage to collect his award Dave hugged his mum, then said he was "lost for words". He also thanked his brother, who was convicted of murder and is now serving a life sentence - Psychodrama is a concept album in the form of a therapy session about his conviction.

The rest of the album is framed as vignettes from a year-long course of therapy, as Dave grapples with grief, pain, domestic abuse, depression and his brother's incarceration.

15-year-old Alex came on stage, and it turns out he knew every single lyric!

In May 2018, his politically charged track Question Time won best contemporary song at the Ivor Novello Awards.

Dave said his goal now is to make "consistent quality music people can connect with".

"This is surreal, a massive honour", he said backstage after the ceremony.

"They respect the craft and the art, so to be able to repay everything they put in, it means the most".

The Mercury Prize is awarded for the best album released in the United Kingdom by a British or Irish act and also has a winning cheque for £25,000.

British rapper slowthai stunned the 2019 Mercury Prize ceremony in London on Thursday night by holding up a dummy of Prime Minister Boris Johnson's decapitated head. "Everyone, the lower class, the middle class, and even the ones in the upper who feel their life is hard".

Lauded as one of the most important debut albums in recent years, the record is packed with absorbing, vivid stories of Northampton and of lives lived at the cultural margins, told with tenderness, rage and humour.

At this year's Glastonbury headliner Stormzy got the crowds to chant "fuck Boris" live on television.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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