After months of debate and speculation, the Polaris Music Prize announced its long list of top Canadian albums and there's some Manitoba metal in this year's mix. Noisecore trio KEN mode joins the prestigious Polaris ranks with its latest recording, Entrench.
The ecclectic slate of albums was put forward by the 200 member jury -- which includes national music journalists, broadcasters, and bloggers -- along with 39 other names including Tegan and Sara, Metric, Hannah Georgas, and A Tribe Called Red. The announcement came on June 13 from Montreal's Phi Centre.
KEN mode has had no shortage of accolades for Entrench, which has landed rave reviews from U.S. tastemakers like Stereogum and Pitchfork and many more since its release in March. The acclaimed album is the follow-up to Venerable, which took the inaugural JUNO Award in the hard music category last year. The band has been touring hard, including an explosive showcase at SXSW in March, and is currently on the road in the U.S. with an upcoming stop at Calgary's Sled Island Festival on June 21.
Now in its eight year, the coveted prize awards to $30,000 to the best full-length Canadian album. The jury makes its selection entirely on artistic merit and not sales figures. Past winners include Arcade Fire, Feist, Patrick Watson, and Karkwa.
The Polaris Jury will next determine the 10 album short list, which will be revealed July 16 at the Drake Hotel in Toronto. The winner won't be revealed until the gala on September 23 at the Polaris gala at Toronto's The Carlu. That night an eleven-person grand jury, chosen from the larger jury pool, will be sequestered at the gala to vote for the winner.
2013 Polaris Music Prize Long List:
A Tribe Called Red – Nation II Nation
Alaclair Ensemble – Les maigres blancs d’Amérique du Noir
ANCIIENTS – Heart of Oak
The Besnard Lakes – Until In Excess, Imperceptible UFO
Louis-Jean Cormier – Le Treizième Étage
Daphni – JIAOLONG
Mac DeMarco – 2
Evening Hymns – Spectral Dusk
Hannah Georgas – Hannah Georgas
Godspeed You! Black Emperor – ‘Allelujah! Don’t Bend! Ascend!
Chilly Gonzales – Solo Piano II
Jim Guthrie – Takes Time
Hayden – Us Alone
Zaki Ibrahim – Every Opposite
KEN mode – Entrench
Kid Koala – 12 bit Blues
Kobo Town – Jumbie in the Jukebox
Pierre Lapointe – Punkt
Lee Harvey Osmond – The Folk Sinner
Les soeurs Boulay – Le poids des confettis
Corb Lund – Cabin Fever
The Luyas – Animator
Majical Cloudz – Impersonator
Metric – Synthetica
METZ – METZ
Danny Michel with the Garifuna Collective – Black Birds Are Dancing Over Me
AC Newman – Shut Down The Streets
Old Man Luedecke – Tender is The Night
Lindi Ortega – Cigarettes & Truckstops
Peter Peter – Une version améliorée de la tristesse
Purity Ring – Shrines
Rah Rah – The Poet’s Dead
Rhye – Woman
Daniel Romano – Come Cry With Me
Colin Stetson – New History Warfare Vol. 3: To See More Light
Suuns – Images du futur
Tegan and Sara – Heartthrob
Al Tuck – Stranger at the Wake
Whitehorse – The Fate of the World Depends On This Kiss
Young Galaxy – Ultramarine