Polaris Music Prize 2009 Tuesday July 21, 2009

If you’ve read this site for any time, you’ll understand that my disdain for the Polaris Music Prize has grown incrementally since it’s inspection in 2006. Let me explain.

Polaris Music Prize 2009

When, the award was first announced in 2006 it was a great news for the Canadian Music Lovers. What music fan couldn’t get excited about a Canadian version of the British Mercury Awards? But since then it’s turned into a shrill elitist driven contest that rewards the most obscure artists rather than the artists that probably deserve it a bit more.

Again, let me explain.

The past three winners have been Final Fantasy – He Poos Clouds, Patrick Wilson – Close To Paradise and Caribou – Andorra. Yes, you’re all probably going Who The F#$K. Which in hind sight isn’t really a bad crop of records, until you look at the list that they beat out. Which turns out to be an essential Who’s who of Indie Rock royalty – including The Arcade Fire, Holy F$%k, The Weakerthans, Feist, Joel Plasket, The Dears, The New Pornographers, Metric, Wolf Parade and Broken Social Scene.

Of the three previous winners, Mr. Potty’s on Weather Patterns is the only one to truly leverage his award into success as seen by his popular appearance at Sled Island this year. On the otherhand, I have to reiterate Mr. Rennie’s initial comment from two years ago – Who the Fuck is Patrick Wilson … And Caribou … well they’re still rocking on.

I’m not saying that this award should be given out to the most commercial of Canada’s Indie Artists, but you can’t ignore some of the great headway our artists are making.

I know someone is going to pipe up and say well this isn’t about popularity, it’s about the art and the music. On that point I’ll agree. But for three years now it appears to not be about the art and the music. Instead, it appears to be about showcasing the judging committee’s obscure knowledge of music and cherished elitism.

I just can’t imagine anyone honestly saying that, even with their soccer mum success, The Reminder or Neon Bible is not a better record than Patrick Wilson’s Close To Paradise. I can’t even fathom 185, so-called jurors, making that exact same statement. 10 maybe, 185 people agreeing on the same obscure artist? No way in hell.

Alright I’ll stop ranting about this award and make a prediction.

My heart wants to say Chad VanGaalen (which is the Best Neil Young record to come out since … well Neil Young). My long shot prediction would have to be Metric’s Fantasies (How Metric’s awesome Fantasies is even considered a long shot is beyond me).

But, unfortunately, my mind tells me it’s going to be Malajube for the French Canadian Contingency.

Categories: The-Music, Sled-Island-2009, The Canada Vibe, The Inane, The Pop-Culture

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