Welsh Music Prize 2023 shortlist includes H. Hawkline, Sister Wives, Ynys, Mace The Great

Welsh Music Prize 2023 shortlist includes H. Hawkline, Sister Wives, Ynys, Mace The Great

The 15-strong Welsh Music Prize shortlist was revealed by Adam Walton on BBC Radio Wales this weekend. The annual award is a celebration of releases over the past year, and seeks to highlight and increase the profile of Welsh music both in the country itself and across the globe.

The finalists offer much to choose from – cinematic nostalgic indie psych-pop via YNYS – shortlisted for our very own Neutron Prize last month – and gothic folklore feminism courtesy of Sister Wives; Minas‘s is a firey debut, boisterous psychedelic ensemble CVC‘s record suitably boisterous, we enjoy classy songwriting by Dafydd Owain, and classic indie pop from Hyll exploring growth into adulthood. Electronic duo Overmono make the list, as does triple Welsh harpist Cerys Hafana, and a deeply personal release from H Hawkline, plus beautiful delicacies shared by Ivan Moult. The legendary John Cale is in there, rapper Mace the Great as bracing as ever, Rogue Jones making a witty and warm return, Stella Donnelly is both biting and moving and Sŵnami entertain with highly melodic indie.

Founded in 2011 and supported by Creative Wales, the prize is open to albums of all genres and past winners have included Kelly Lee Owens, Boy Azooga, Deyah, Gruff Rhys, Gwenno, Meilyr Jones and more. Last year’s award was given to Bato Mato by Adwaith who are the first artists to win the Welsh Music Prize twice, the band’s debut album Melyn taking home the gong in 2019.

The shortlisted albums have been whittled down from a longlist of 140 albums by the Welsh Music Prize jurors. The judges – Dave Acton (Larynx Entertainment), Huw Baines (The Guardian / NME / Kerrang), Tegwen Bruce Deans (music journalist), Mirain Iwerydd (BBC Radio Cymru), Nest Jenkins (ITV Cymru Wales Backstage), Eddy Temple Morris (Virgin Radio) now have the task of choosing one of the nominated albums for the coveted prize.

Winners will be announced at this years’ ceremony on 10 October at Wales Millennium Centre, presented by BBC Radio 1 presenter Sian Eleri. The event will welcome a live public audience as part of Llais, Cardiff’s flagship international arts festival which takes place 10– 15 October. This year the Welsh Music Prize will open Llais for the second year, and include performances by shortlisted performers Cerys Hafana, Mace the Great and Minas. Triskel Award winners Talulah, Dom & Lloyd and Half Happy who receive up to £5,000 worth of support each to assist their careers with advice and expert sessions from Help Musicians, will also play on the might along with PPL Momentum recipient Hana Lili.

Welsh Music Prize co-founder, Huw Stephens said: “This year’s shortlist is another great collection of albums from Wales. The Welsh Music Prize is a globally recognised award and an important part of Wales’ music calendar, and this year’s line up at the Welsh Music Prize promises to make it a very special night.”

The Welsh Music Prize 2023 finalists are:

Cerys Hafana – Edyf (Cerys Hafana / Self Released) 

CVC – Get Real (CVC Recordings)

Dafydd Owain – Uwch Dros Y Pysgod (Recordiau I KA CHING)

H Hawkline – Milk For Flowers (Heavenly Recordings) 

Hyll – Sŵn O’r Stafell Arall (Recordiau JigCal Records) 

Ivan Moult – Songs From Severn Grove (Bubblewrap Records) 

John Cale – Mercy (Domino Recording Co Ltd.) 

Mace The Great – SplottWorld (SplottWorld Ent.) 

Minas – All My Love Has Failed Me (Libertino Records) 

Overmono – Good Lies (XL Recordings) 

Rogue Jones – Dos Bebés (Libertino Records)

Sister Wives – Y Gawres (Libertino Records) 

Stella Donnelly – Flood (Secretly Canadian) 

Sŵnami – Sŵnamii (Recordiau Côsh Records)

YNYS – Ynys (Libertino Records) 

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