Today (Friday, 28th of November 2014) the organisers of the Welsh Music Prize, in association with PPL and Otley Brewing Company, have announced that Joanna Gruesome are the winners of the Welsh Music Prize 2013–2014 for their debut album Weird Sister.
“The thrilling Cardiff-based five-piece band beat off stiff competition from albums released over the past year by the likes of Manic Street Preachers, Gruff Rhys, Cate Le Bon and Future of the Left to scoop the prize. The Welsh Music Prize trophy was awarded to members of the band by Media Wales music journalist David Owens at a ceremony held at The Sherman Theatre, Cardiff.
Joanna Gruesome comprise Alanna on vocals, Owen on guitar, Max on bass, George on guitar and Dave on drums. The band formed in 2010 after they met at an anger management counselling group. They have received rave reviews for their energetic live shows and critical acclaim for their debut album. Weird Sister, released via Fortuna POP! (Europe) and Slumberland (USA), is an album brimming with irresistible pop melodies, spiked with dissonant fuzzy jangle and super-fast, hardcore punk drumbeats.
Now in its fourth year, the Welsh Music Prize has given artists in Wales a remarkable platform to showcase their music globally and celebrates the very best of what the Welsh music industry has to offer. Organised by John Rostron and Huw Stephens, the Welsh Music Prize has been won previously by Georgia Ruth for Week of Pines, Future of the Left for The Plot Against Common Sense and Gruff Rhys for Hotel Shampoo.
John Rostron said: “Huge congratulations to Joanna Gruesome. They’re a brilliant young band with a strong sense of identity and have released a terrific debut album. Their record resonated with the judges who were universal in their praise. I hope that many new people now seek them out and buy a copy!”
Huw Stephens said: “The 12 shortlisted albums are fantastic. A big thanks to our judges who chose Joanna Gruesome’s Weird Sister as the winner. They’ve come a long way and continue to thrive, so a massive congratulations to all involved with Joanna Gruesome!”
The final decision culminated in over a year’s worth of activity where one hundred members of the Welsh music community whittled down their recommendations to the definitive list of nominees. From a shortlist of twelve albums, nine judges made up of industry experts, practitioners and tastemakers then cast their deciding votes by secret ballot to decide on the winning album. ”
The shortlist in full was:
9 Bach – Tincian
Cate Le Bon – Mug Museum
Euros Childs – Situation Comedy
Future of the Left – How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident
Gruff Rhys – American Interior
Gulp – Season Sun
Joanna Gruesome – Weird Sister
Manic Street Preachers – Futurology
Samoans – Rescue
Slowly Rolling Camera – Slowly Rolling Camera
The Gentle Good – Y Bardd Anfarwol
The People The Poet – The Narrator
The panel in full comprised: Helen Weatherhead (BBC 6Music), Sian Rowe (XL Recordings), Folu Babatola (Red Bull), Owain Schiavone (Y Selar), Teleri Glyn Jones (Juxtaposed), Laura Snapes (NME), Ben Lovett (Mumford & Sons / Communion), David Wrench (Producer) and James Watts (Xenomania).