2019 Hyundai Mercury Music Prize: Live performances

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Dave winning the 2019 Hyundai Mercury Prize

This year’s Hyundai Mercury Prize, celebrating the best album by a British or Irish artist over the last 12 months, has been won by Dave for Psychodrama. The album from the south London rapper is an extraordinary debut, framed as excerpts from a year-long course of therapy and tackling issues of grief, racial identity, domestic abuse and depression.

The award honours the best British and Irish album of the last 12 months, and is chosen by a panel of British music critics and industry professionals. Psychodrama beat albums by black midi, Foals, Nao, Little Simz, and others, and joins the likes of other rap winners, including Dizzee Rascal’s Boy in Da Corner and Skepta’s Konnichiwa. Accepting the award, Dave invited his mother up on stage and paid tribute to his brother, who is currently in prison, for inspiring the album.

Dave's Psychodrama is the winner of the Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019

The awards feature live performances from the nominated artists, enjoy all the performances below. (Warning: Some performances feature language that may offend.)

Foals, On the Luna

Foals - On The Luna (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

Foals frontman Yannis Philippakis didn’t play guitar after a "run-in with a knife" that left him unable to play - The Maccabees' Felix White stepped in to save the day.

Anna Calvi, Don’t Beat the Girl out of My Boy

Anna Calvi - Don't Beat The Girl Out Of My Boy (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

Describing the song, Anna Calvi says: “It’s a song about the defiance of happiness. It’s about being free to identify yourself in whichever way you please, without any restraints from society.”

Little Simz, Selfish

Little Simz - Selfish (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

“I'm right in the dead middle of my twenties - no one warned me it was going to be this hard,” Little Simz told BBC Radio 1’s Annie Mac. “It feels like a Grey Area - which is why I called the album that.”

SEED Ensemble, Interplanetary Migration

SEED Ensemble - Interplanetary Migration (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

The ten-piece project led by composer, arranger and saxophonist Cassie Kinoshi combines South African jazz with Sixties soul and hip hop influences.

Fontaines D.C., Boys In The Better Land

Fontaines D.C. - Boys In The Better Land (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

Fast and furious: The band say that the only lighting they had when they recorded some songs was a strobe light.

Cate Le Bon, Home To You

Cate Le Bon - Home To You (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

Pop with avant-garde flavour explores a search for belonging and a sense of place.

Dave, Black Or Streatham

Dave - Psycho (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

The London rapper brought the audience to their feet with this performance.

black midi, BM BM BM

black midi - bmbmbm (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

Keep your eye on the guitarist, trust us.

The 1975, It's Not Living (If It's Not With You)

The 1975 - It's Not Living (If It's Not With You)

As the band are in Australia, they showed a video of a live performance.

NAO, Another Lifetime

NAO - Another Lifetime (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

Cosmic sensuality meets sad banger from the singer-songwriter.

slowthai, Doorman

slowthai - Doorman (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

The self-styled “Brexit Bandit” gnarls and snarls his way through this show-stopping performance describing a night out.

IDLES, Never Fight a Man With a Perm

IDLES - Never Fight A Man With A Perm (Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019)

From one flavour of punk to another – with the Bristol band’s rant against drugged-up toxic masculinity. slowthai certainly loved it.


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