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The Star Online: Entertainment: Music

James Blake wins Mercury Prize award


The experimental electro artiste beat David Bowie and Arctic Monkeys, among others.       

Electronica singer-songwriter James Blake won Britain's prestigious Mercury Prize this week for his second album, Overgrown.

The 25-year-old art-school graduate beat off competition from bookmaker's favourite Laura Mvula, legendary singer-songwriter David Bowie and Sheffield rockers Arctic Monkeys to claim the prize at a ceremony in London.

The bashful winner thanked his parents – his father is also a musician – for teaching him to be "self-sufficient", before forgetting to pick up his award.

He said it was "amazing" to be nominated for the same award as Bowie, and promised to make sure the prize money (RM99,200) "goes to some good use".

"This is the first award I've ever won apart from a tennis trophy which I won when I was about 12 at my school and I'll hold them in equal esteem," he joked.

Blake was nominated for the prize, which honours the best British or Irish album of any genre released in the year to July, in 2011 with his breakthrough eponymous release.

He immediately gained critical acclaim for his musicality and fusion of different styles including hip-hop, dubstep, electro and soul.

Soul singer Mvula was nominated for her album Sing To The Moon while the Arctic Monkeys were shortlisted for their fifth LP AM, but could not repeat their 2006 triumph.

Bowie, who was not at the ceremony in London's Camden Town, received a nomination for The Next Day, his first studio album in a decade.

It was third time unlucky for folkie Laura Marling, who lost out again with her record Once I Was An Eagle.

Organisers claim the Mercury Prize is Europe's top arts award in terms of influence and media coverage.

Winning, or even being shortlisted, usually sparks a surge in sales, but winners have often fallen back into obscurity.

The prize is known for representing an eclectic range of styles, but usually leans towards indie and rock music.

Previous winners include Pulp, Primal Scream, Franz Ferdinand and M People. Leeds indie-band Alt-J claimed last year's prize. — AFP Relaxnews

Spooky melody


Try not to watch any of these music videos in the dark.

BEFORE Miley Cyrus terrorised everyone – from Robin Thicke to Sinead O' Connor – with her tongue and twerking, there were many other artistes who served up genuine scares through creepy, unsettling, cinematic-quality music videos. 

For Halloween, we round up some of the creepiest music videos ever for your (sick) viewing pleasure.

Michael Jackson


NO list of scary music videos would be complete without Thriller by the late Michael Jackson. Released in 1983, this classic 13-minute music video showed Jackson going through several transformations as he terrorises his female companion.

At the end, you'd have to wonder if his female friend will ever wake up for what seems like a neverending nightmare. Only Jackson can pull off demonic looks and still be the reigning King of Pop.


Somebody's Watching Me

Rockwell finds out that he's not so alone after all in Somebody's Watching Me. 

Rockwell finds out that he's not so alone in Somebody's Watching Me.

THIS 1984 video shows R&B singer Rockwell casually minding his own business at home alone, when a man in a creepy mask and other manifestations of evil decides to check in on him. It doesn't matter to them whether he likes it or not. 

Even with all the disturbance in the house, Rockwell still finds the time to shower.


We Are Water

Slasher films is the inspiration behind Health's highly-engaging terrifying music video We Are Water. 

Slasher films is the inspiration behind Health's highly-engaging terrifying music video We Are Water.

LOS Angeles-based noise rock band Health released this video in 2009. Taking cues from slasher movies likes Halloween and Friday The 13th, it opens with a young girl running across the woods in the dark. 

The camera zooms in on her helpless face and it gets creepier when you noticed her smeared clown make up. She keeps looking back and soon enough, you'd get to see what's chasing her.


Don't Leave Me

A boyfriend learns the painful lesson of packing his bags and dumping Pink. 

A boyfriend learns the painful lesson of packing his bags and dumping Pink.

PINK proves that hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. In this video, Pink begs a boyfriend not to pack up his stuff and leave. He should have listened to her. The singer pays homage to Stephen King's Misery and even get some help from sinister-looking dolls. 

That should be enough to tell you that it obviously didn't end well for the boyfriend.

Marilyn Manson

The Beautiful People

Marilyn Manson wants you to meet The Beautiful People in his morbid, unsettling music video. 

Marilyn Manson wants you to meet The Beautiful People in his morbid video.

MARILYN Manson brings your nightmare to life in this 1996 video. This video's jittery camerawork heightens the sense of terror you'd get from looking at Manson in his morbid makeup and Goth costume. If that is not enough, Manson shows off his teeth through some really painful-looking dental devices. 

Plus it's Marilyn Manson, he could fill up this whole list if my editor lets me get away with it.


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