Mercury Prize 2009 - Place Your Bets Now
With little over a week to go before the nominations are announced for this year's Mercury Prize the music world has put festival fever aside for a few moments and begun to look back at the past twelve months of recording output from the fair shores of Britain and Ireland.
Since Elbow's triumph in September 2008 we've had welcome returns from the likes of Super Furry Animals and the Manic Street Preachers, hotly tipped chanteuses like Florence & The Machine and La Roux and moody rock from Scotland's Glasvegas and London's White Lies.
All of which has fuelled early discussion amongst the bookmakers as they make the first attempts to fathom what is on the minds of the judging panel. NME point out that Doves and Little Boots are the frontrunners, commanding early prices of 3-1 and 4-1 respectively. The Quietus on the other hand tip the 50-1 outside chances of Morrissey and the Manics.
Forward Russia's Whiskas has cast his net wider, recognising the leftfield possibilities of The Bug and wildcard chances of Fanfarlo and The Leisure Society, before narrowing it down to twelve of his own favourites that may or may not pop up on next Tuesday's list.
Over the next few days we'll be asking a few of our favourite music blogs and websites to do the same. Casting their minds back through Michael Jackson memories, SXSW buzz and end of the year best ofs, to share their views on the current state of the UK album and enlighten us on the great releases that may have passed under our radar.
Together we may be able to foretell this year's final twelve. Well, maybe not all of them.