The Ticket Awards: Music
You readers of The Ticket are a sophisticated, classy, measured bunch of well-adjusted people - and your taste in music ain’t bad either, writes Jim Carroll
See winners list below
2013, the year of the monkey. That’s the immediate takeaway as we run our eyes over the votes cast in our end-of-year poll. Not only did the Arctic Monkeys take home the best-album gong for the career-best AM, but they also hit the road to Sheffield with the glassware for best band too.
AM was a powerful record in every sense. The band’s fifth album in seven years, it served as a reminder that Alex Turner and friends are still capable of hitting the target with ease. After a few ropey turns on their third or fourth albums as they tried to find their footing on new turf, this was the band back sucking diesel in some style.
Sonically, AM explored that hitherto unmapped terrain where garage rock and hip-hop’s hefty oomph came together for a chat. Lyrically, it was further proof that Turner’s particular knack for canny turns of phrase and beautifully observed lines about modern life is still very much intact.
Live, the band also provided thrills, as when they brought this year’s Electric Picnic – your festival of the year, readers, with a colossal 40 per cent of the votes – to a close. Here’s hoping for an indoor show in 2014.
Elsewhere, it was the year of the two French lads in the motorcycle helmets. It seems that Daft Punk were playing in your house (your house) all year long and Get Lucky took the Track of the Year plaudits by a country mile. An infectious tune which took up residence in your inner ear from the very first time you heard it, it was a track which still sounded fresh and vivid the 20th, 86th and 229th time you heard it.
While New Zealand pop ingénue Lorde took the runner’s-up berth in the tunes stake with Royals, she won Solo Act of the Year in pretty comprehensive fashion, beating off the challenge of critics’ favourite John Grant. Like Get Lucky, Royals is a diamond of a tune destined to dominate radio-station playlists the world over. Unlike Get Lucky, though, Royals came with a pretty great album in the shape of Lorde’s Pure Heroine. These were teenage kicks which are really hard to beat.
Moving to domestic matters, Little Green Cars are firmly in your love and affection. They are the winners of Irish Act of the Year, while their Absolute Zero album ran the Monkeys’ AM close. O Emperor and Villagers took the second and third slots for best Irish act, while the latter’s Awayland was your third favourite album release in 2013.
One big Irish winner according to our readers was Hozier. His video for Take Me to Church, directed by Brendan Canty and Conal Thomson, is already a huge viral hit (1.12 million views at the time of writing) so it came as no surprise to see it getting more votes than everyone else on the list combined to top that category. A good year for the Wicklowman, with record deals from Island and Columbia in his back pocket too. Let’s hope he’ll come up with another anthem like Take Me To Church in due course.
As we’ve already mentioned, the Electric Picnic took the award for best festival, but there were also decent showings for Body & Soul, Knockanstockan and the Kilkenny Arts Festival. If 2013 proved anything, it was that we are a festival republic.
But, more than anything else, the poll reassured us that the readers of The Ticket are a sophisticated, classy, measured bunch of well-adjusted people. You chose the stealth return of David Bowie as your Moment of the Year over the hideous, boring, predictable Twerkgate involving a pair of attention-
seeking women who should have known better. As the year ends, that’s a result to warm the cockles of the heart.
BAND OF THE YEAR
ALBUM OF THE YEAR
SOLO ACT OF THE YEAR
TRACK OF THE YEAR
Daft Punk - Get Lucky
IRISH ACT OF THE YEAR
Little Green Cars
VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Hozier - Take Me to Church
TRAD ALBUM OF THE YEAR
An Indigo Sky - The West Ocean String Quartet
JAZZ ALBUM OF THE YEAR
The Bohemian Mooney - Nigel Mooney
ROOTS ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Foreverly - Billie Joe Armstrong/Norah Jones
CLASSICAL ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Bach: Partitas 1-6 - Malcolm Proud (Harpsichord)
FESTIVAL OF THE YEAR
Electric Picnic - Stradbally, Co Laois