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Young Fathers win Mercury Prize 2014

Story by Jack Foley

EDINBURGH-based hip-hop group Young Fathers have won the 2014 Barclaycard Mercury Prize for the best British or Irish record of the last 12 months.

The band’s album, Dead, saw off competition from 11 other albums, including those by Damon Albarn, Bombay Bicycle Club and FKA Twigs, who had gone into the awards ceremony as the bookies’ favourites.

Simon Frith, Chair of Judges said: “Young Fathers have a unique take on urban British music, brimming with ideas – forceful, unexpected and moving.”

On collecting the winner’s trophy and cheque for £20,000, Young Fathers said: “Thank you, thank you. We love you all!”

The trio can now expect to see a massive boost in record sales.

They collected their award at London’s iconic Roundhouse.

Young Fathers is comprised of G Hastings, Alloysious Massaquoi and Kayus Bankole and their brand of hip hop is designed to reflect their different backgrounds.

Massaquoi is originally from Liberia, Scots-born Bankole has Nigerian parents, while Hastings hails from Drylaw in the north of the city.

The Awards Show, which will be broadcast in full on Channel 4 at 11.40pm this coming Friday, October 31, saw each of the 12 shortlisted artists perform a track from their ‘Albums of the Year’, which were as follows…

Anna Calvi Eliza from One Breath
Bombay Bicycle Club Carry Me from So Long, See You Tomorrow
Damon Albarn Hostiles from Everyday Robots
East India Youth Looking For Someone from Total Strife Forever
FKA twigs Two Weeks from LP1
GoGo Penguin Hopopono from v2.0
Jungle Busy Earnin’ from Jungle
Kate Tempest Circles from Everybody Down
Nick Mulvey Cucurucu from First Mind
Polar Bear Be Free from In Each and Every One
Royal Blood Figure It Out from Royal Blood
Young Fathers Get Up from Dead

Many of the artists are also making the recordings of their live performances available to download exclusively from iTunes in order to raise money for War Child