The 2012 BRIT awards nominations have been announced, with Jessie J, Ed Sheeran and Adele unsurprisingly leading the pack alongside nominations for PJ Harvey, Coldplay and Kate Bush.
Sheeran is nominated in four categories including British male solo artist, whilst Jessie J and Adele have three nominations each, going head to head for best single and British female solo artist.
Kate Bush, who returned with two new albums last year including December’s ’50 words for snow’, has already been nominated an astonishing seven times in the category of best female solo artist but has never walked away with the award. Similarly, PJ Harvey, who has unquestionably just had the biggest year of her career to date, has been nominated eight times for a BRIT but hasn’t won, at least not yet.
The BRITS obviously always reflect what has sold well in the last year – but is the list a roll call for what Pop Justice recently called ‘the new boring’?
Generator asks: Has commercially successful music been especially bland over the last year?
Of course, pop critics groan on and on about the ‘death of Indie’ quite frequently (as Dorian Lynskey has in The Guardian this week), but this time, do they have a point? It was announced this week that pop albums have outsold rock for the first time in seven years and the Sound of 2012 bland list, also supports the view that guitar music is over, for now at least. (more on that from The Gen soon).
Or is it simply the case that more interesting music is being made in the pop realm at the moment? It could be argued that international stars such as Lady Gaga and Beyonce are far more subversive than anyone strumming a guitar (The Vaccines and The Maccabees as far as commercially successful ‘Indie’ goes at the moment). Are the nominations reflective of where British music is right now?
Adding to the backwards looking ‘guitar music is over’ feel is the fact that, Blur, once an embodiment of successful British guitar pop and this year’s winners of the ‘Outstanding contribution to music’ award are also set to perform at the BRITS, held on February 21 at the O2 Arena in London and broadcast on ITV1 –