1. Prizes and music

    ‘Silence Yourself’ has been shortlisted for The Mercury Prize this year and I would like to take this opportunity to say a few words before the actual ceremony takes place at the end of October.

    I am feeling a little bit shy to give anybody a lesson when I am given the honours and it is obvious to say that I didn’t start writing music to win prizes and get rewards on any kind of level - that’s not where we were aiming when we started writing together with Savages. I do not write music to enter any kind of competitions, compete with other bands or win any prizes. I think we produced a nice piece of work and we have been lucky so far to have received nothing but Love from the people who care about music, audiences, musicians, artists, friends & family. I am truly grateful for so much Love and remain humble thinking we haven’t tried to ‘force-feed’ our music into people’s head. So to this extend, I am happy and flattered that people think this album is deserving of more attention.

    If anything, this nomination doesn’t make me feel totally uncomfortable. But if there is a lesson I am taking from this, and maybe you will care for it too, it is this one  : whatever happens, do whatever the fuck you want. Being nominated or not doesn’t make you a better band, it doesn’t change anything, musicians of our generation don’t earn millions the way they used to in the past, we simply don’t have anything to loose. I wish above all for young artists today to keep their determination intact, because I know how hard it is to believe it is still possible to develop yourself with artistic integrity. I wish for our nomination to send the right signals. ‘Do whatever the fuck you want’ is the positive message, the new mantra. Impose yourself, they will get used to it. Times are changing. The letter published by ‘Godspeed You! Black Emperor’ following their Polaris music Award is setting an inspirational example for the young generation that we are. It is possible for artists to develop themselves the way they feel it should be done, without being afraid, and without compromising what they truly are.

    The Mercury Prize is a reward that goes to the album. So, to conclude, well done ‘Silence Yourself’ and well done everyone who have been involved artistically into its creation. We did a great job - but we knew that anyway.

    Thank you.

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    JB omitted a link, so here’s that Godspeed You! Black Emperor statement.
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    Savages are definitely high on our list of inspirations. Insightful words, and a great manta for a band: ”Do whatever...
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