Jamie xx is the bookmaker William Hill’s favourite to win this year’s Mercury prize for album of the year, with odds of 4/1 in the lead-up to the award announcement on Friday.
According to the bookies, the electronic music producer’s debut album, In Colour, just inched past singer-songwriter’s Benjamin Clementine’s debut, At Least for Now, backed to win at 9/2. William Hill said that Clementine has pulled in about 50% of all bets placed since Tuesday.
“Benjamin Clementine started the betting as the 10/1 outsider, yet he is the most popular selection among our punters and his odds have tumbled recently,” said William Hill spokesman Joe Crilly.
Elsewhere, a few acts come in with fairly similar odds before the race opens up. Indie band Wolf Alice are 7/1 to win, while both former nominee Ghostpoet and multi-instrumentalist Eska are at 8/1. Glitchy electronic music producer Aphex Twin, folk-pop singer-songwriter Soak and punk duo Slaves are all in to win at 12/1.
Ex-Moloko singer Róisín Murphy’s odds are at 14/1, while former Supergrass frontman Gaz Coombes is at 16/1 to win with his recent solo offering. Glaswegian multi-instrumentalist C Duncan and Florence + the Machine round off the nominees list, both with odds at 20/1.
Jamie xx first gained critical acclaim as a member of minimal electro-indie band the xx, while branching out as a DJ and producer in his own right. His debut was highly anticipated upon its release in March, and earned positive reviews in both the Guardian and the Observer.
Clementine rose from relative obscurity after appearing on Later … with Jools Holland in October 2013, and released his debut in January.
The Mercury prize is due to be announced on 20 November during a live broadcast from 9.30pm GMT on BBC4.