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2021 Australian Music Prize Announces Full List of Nominees

The 17th annual Soundmerch Australian Music Prize will unveil the winner of its $30,000 windfall in March of 2022.

Image of the 2020 Australian Music Prize Winners

The Avalanches (pictured receiving their cash prize from Soundmerch's Tim Everist) won the 2020 Australian Music Prize for their album, 'We Will Always Love You'.


As the year draws to a close and music-lovers reflect on their favourite records of the year, a litany of judges have been hard at work curating the list of the nominated albums for the 2021 Australian Music Prize.

Returning for its 17th year, the Soundmerch AMP will be formally announced in the new year, though 2021 closes out with a list of 110 records being unveiled as part of its shortlist.

“It’s such an extraordinary opportunity to hear the vast expression of Australian album making talent,” explains judge, and 2019 shortlisted artist, Abbe May.

“I am always so excited by the capacity for Australian artists to not only create world class music but to achieve this consistently in the powerful and difficult form of an Album – it is not an easy accomplishment and yet so many Australian artists have made some of the world’s best albums this year.”

The full shortlist contains some of the most beloved and critically acclaimed records to have been released in Australia throughout 2021, including Genesis Owusu’s Smiling with No Teeth, which won Album of The Year at the 2021 ARIA Awards. The list also includes records from the likes of Courtney Barnett, Nick Cave & Warren Ellis, Amyl and The Sniffers, You Am I, and even two entries from King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard.

Alongside the announcement of the longlist, the Australian Music Prize has announced new partnerships with labels EMI, Virgin, and Island to form a shortlist funding pool of $9,000 to ensure that artists who find themselves in the shortlist aren’t left out-of-pocket by attending the winner announcement event in Melbourne in March.

“Over most of the AMP years, if an artist has told me that they can’t attend the main event as they simply can’t afford it, I’ve been able to help them out – however, with the craziness of the past couple of years AMP funding hasn’t been able to do so,” explains Scott Murphy, Founder and Director of the Australian Music Prize. “To now have additional funds which are dedicated to those artists is such a relief!”

“As a lot of the artists Shortlisted by The AMP haven’t really started to earn significantly from their work, yet want to attend the announcement event, it can be hard,” explains Ziggy Ramo. “I experienced this myself!

“So it’s great to hear that there are now funds available to ensure the artists don’t attend simply for not being able to afford to do so.”

With the nine shortlisted albums set to be revealed in January of 2022, the annual Soundmerch AMP will be revealed on Thursday, March 3rd, with the winner set to receive $30,000 from Soundmerch as part of their prize.

The 17th Soundmerch AMP Nominated Albums

Allday – Drinking With My Smoking Friends
Amends – Tales Of Love, Loss, and Outlaws
Amyl and The Sniffers – Comfort To Me
Australian Art Orchestra – Hand To Earth
B Wise – Jamie
Bad Bangs – Character Building
Baker Boy – Gela
Courtney Barnett – Things Take Time, Take Time
Big Scary – Daisy
Billy Davis – This Is What’s Important
The Black Sorrows – Saint Georges Road
Bliss n Eso – The Sun
Bones and Jones – Ginger Gold (Farm Singles)
Bored Shorts – Way Off!
Katie Brianna – This Way Or Some Other
Lachlan Bryan & The Wildes – As Long As It’s Not Us
Candy – A Pull To Heal
Troy Cassar-Daley – The World Today
Nick Cave & Warren Ellis – Carnage
Sarah Mary Chadwick – Me & Ennui Are Friends, Baby
Charm of Finches – Wonderful Oblivion
Belle Chen – Late Night Sessions: New Dawn
Chet Faker – Hotel Surrender
Children Collide – Time Itself
Civic – Future Forecast
Client Liaison – Divine Intervention
Comets – Rain Faces
Cool Sounds – Bystander
Cosmic Psychos – Mountain of Piss
Deuce – Deuce
Emma Donovan & The Putbacks – Under These Streets
Ryan Downey – A Ton Of Colours
Dseeva – Pressure Makes Diamonds
DZ Deathrays – Positive Rising: Part 2
Kutcha Edwards – Circling
Ruby Fields – Been Doin’ It For A Bit
Tori Forsyth – Provlépseis
Good Morning – Barnyard
The Goon Sax – Mirror II
Grigoryan Brothers – This Is Us: A Musical Reflection of Australia
Grinding Eyes – Taste The Monochrome
Harpooner – In Two Minds
Hiatus Kaiyote – Mood Valiant
Holy Holy – Hello My Beautiful World
HTRK – Rhinestones
IJALE – OTTN (On to the Next)
Illy – The Space Between
Indigo Sparke – Echo
Izy – Irene
Jarryd James – P.M.
Jazzparty – Nobody Gets Away
June Jones – Leafcutter
Jonnine – Blue Hills
The Jungle Giants – Love Sign
Steve Kilbey & The Winged Heels – The Hall of Counterfeits
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – L.W.
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – Butterfly 3000
Kucka – Wrestling
Ajak Kwai – Let Me Grow My Wings
Jack Ladder – Hijack!
LANKS – Spirits Pt. 2
LIARS – The Apple Drop
Jess Locke – Don’t Ask Yourself Why
Luca Brasi – Everything Is Tenuous
Maple Glider – To Enjoy Is The Only Thing
Martha Marlow – Medicine Man
Mere Women – Romantic Notions
Merpire – Simulation Ride
Middle Kids – Today We’re The Greatest
Mista Monk – Inkswel – Muti
Mitch Dillon’s Compulsive Ramblers – Mitch Dillon’s Compulsive Ramblers
Mod Con – Modern Condition
The Murlocs – Bittersweet Demons
Ngaiire – 3
Mike Noga – Open Fire
Odette – Herald
Genesis Owusu – Smiling With No Teeth
The Paper Kites – Roses
Parvyn – Sa
Perfect Moment – Kangourou
Tex Perkins & The Fat Rubber Band – Tex Perkins & The Fat Rubber Band
Pond – 9
Psychedelic Porn Crumpets – SHYGA! The Sunlight Mound
Jordan Rakei – What We Call Life
Gretta Ray – Begin To Look Around
REMI – Fried
The Rubens – 0202
Rüfüs Du Sol – Surrender
Emma Russack & Lachlan Denton – Something Is Going To Change Tomorrow, Today. What Will You Do? What Will You Say?
Saint Surly & Dyl Thomas – Twelve (Hundred)
Heather Shannon – Midnight Sun
Tim Shiel – Distractions One
J.P. Shilo – Jubjoté
Shining Bird – Deadlands
Skydeck – Coupon
Alice Skye – I Feel Better But I Don’t Feel Good
Sleep D x Ad Lib Collective – Flashed Glass
Snowy Band – Alternate Endings
Julia Stone – Sixty Summers
Liz Stringer – First Time Really Feeling
Tash Sultana – Terra Firma
Sam Teskey – Cycles
Time For Dreams – Life Of The Inhabitant
Tora – A Force Majeure
Tropical Fuck Storm – Deep States
Vika & Linda – The Wait
Bob Weatherall / Halfway / William Barton – Restless Dream
Marcus Whale – The Hunger
You Am I – The Lives Of Others
Gretta Ziller – Judas Tree