The Polaris Music Prize Long List was revealed at the Drake Hotel in Toronto Thursday, June 16. The prestigious award honours the best Canadian albums of the year and offers $30,000 to the winner.
Among the 40 bands and artists announced as contenders were Canadian favourites Neil Young for Le Noise, Sloan for The Double Cross and Buck 65 for 20 Odd Years. But indie darlings were also well represented. Diamond Rings was up for Special Affections, The Weeknd for House of Balloons and The Rural Alberta Advantage for Departing (for the whole list click here). Of the 40 nominees, 10 will make it onto the Short List, announced July 6, and the winner of the Prize will be announced September 19.
Past winners and nominees were on hand for the announcement, including Brendan Canning of Broken Social Scene. Canning has a couple of the nominated albums in his personal collection, including Austra’s Feel It Break and Arcade Fire’s The Suburbs, but at the launch Thursday wouldn’t name a favourite. Maybe it’s because he has some perspective on the award. BSS never won Polaris and look at them now! – Regan Reid