In the new issue of Music Week we take an in-depth look at the BRIT Awards 2019. Inside we speak to chairman/CEO of Sony Music UK & Ireland and current BRIT Awards chairman Jason Iley about this year’s ceremony, catch-up with BRITs critics choice winner Sam Fender and get the full story behind each of the albums nominated for Mastercard British Album Of The Year.
Competing against The 1975 – A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships (Dirty Hit/Polydor), Anne-Marie – Speak Your Mind (Asylum/Atlantic), George Ezra – Staying At Tamara’s (Columbia) and Jorja Smith – Lost & Found (Famm/The Orchard) is Florence + The Machine with High As Hope (Virgin EMI).
Produced by Florence Welch alongside Emile Haynie (Lana Del Rey, Kanye West), High As Hope debuted at No.2 and has gone on to sell 109,385 copies to date according to Official Chart Company data.
With Florence And The Machine still having European and American tour dates to come, plus more new music and a headline appearance at British Summer Time, the campaign still has legs. In the new issue, however, Virgin EMI president Ted Cockle looks back at the incredible journey so far, one that has seen Florence be nominated for the Mercury Prize, and play everywhere from the Principality Stadium supporting The Rolling Stones to bringing her new song South London Forever to life via an intimate show at The Joiners Arms in Camberwell.
This year marks the 10th that Florence + The Machine have featured in the BRITs, something Cockle was quick to signal as being important.
“We’re delighted this is 10 years of Florence being nominated in the BRITs environment,” Cockle told Music Week. “In pop music life-cycles – like dogs’ – it’s like 70 years to be there for 10! She won in 2010 for her debut, Lungs, she was nominated in 2012 for Ceremonials, in 2016 for How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful and now this record for 2019. Looking at her contemporaries in the category, she’s certainly the frontrunner in that regard. I’m delighted in terms of quite how international she is compared to some of the others.”
Cockle also stressed the unique nature of Florence as a complete artist as being particularly praise worthy.
“I go deep with Florence and, after many, many years, I continue to believe everything about her as an artist," he told Music Week. "Some people become professional performers, but she plays the role of the artist, performer, writer and producer. Florence’s records have always been an expression of her at all times, and she ended up co-producing this with Emile Haynie. I think she was always doing it, and there’s just been a growing confidence to go, ‘I can do this’ – it's the incremental process of her recognising the scale of her contribution.”
Subscribers can read the full Music Week BRITs 2019 preview here.