Polaris 2011

Get To Know Your Short List

Arcade Fire- The Suburbs

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past six months, or you’re a Justin Bieber fan, you know who Arcade Fire is. Formed in Montreal in 2003, this indie rock band is centered around husband and wife team; Win Butler and Régine Chassagne, and boasts at least 8 members and 16+ instruments.

Their critically acclaimed debut album Funeral was released in 2004 and followed by the equally lauded Neon Bible in 2007. It’s no surprise then, that 2010’s The Suburbs has been met with both critical and commercial success, already winning Album of the Year at both the Grammys and the JUNOs along with pretty much everything else for which it’s been nominated (to the chagrin of tweens everywhere).

Neon Bible was short listed for the Polaris Music Prize in 2007 (didn’t win) and  they’ve done it again with The Suburbs.  In my experience with Polaris, bands like Arcade Fire always make the short list but never prevail.  After all, even if the album is amazing, commercially successful bands don’t need the money and exposure as much as the up and coming bands do. And when it comes down to it, Polaris is a big supporter of independent Canadian art. It almost seems a waste to give this prestigious award to a band with a full trophy case and a storefront display at HMV.

Even though this type of thinking is discouraged amongst jury members, my theory has yet to be proven wrong.  Canadian indie heroes Joel Plaskett, Metric and Broken Social Scene have all been nominated twice. Feist, The Weakerthans and Tegan & Sara have also made short list appearances. They all fell to the likes of Karkwa, Fucked Up, Caribou, Patrick Watson and Final Fantasy. See what I mean?

Decide for yourself whether or not this album will break the trend here


About J2

What happens when you're a wordsy music aficionado who works for NXNE, CMW, HPX, Olio Music Festival, The JUNOs and Polaris Music Prize? You spend all of your free time blogging about it... Follow on Twitter if you're so inclined: @HearPlugged

Posted on July 31, 2011, in Sound Bites and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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