Well, it finally happened. The longshot did not pull out the upset. The underdog was put to rest. Everyone's new best friend, Scottish alternative rock act and odds on favorite, Franz Ferdinand, have won Britain's coveted Mercury Music Prize for its eponymous debut album. "We didn't expect to win this," said lead vocalist Alex Kapranos upon accepting the award and £20,000 ($35,600) prize. "The bands [nominated] this year reflect a trend in the U.K. toward fantastic music." Alex went on to tell the crowd how when the band first got together, they hoped to sell a humble 500 singles. He added, "We really didn't expect to win this. We haven't got a speech or anything - we're truly gobsmacked. It's fantastic and we're very chuffed."
The annual music-industry award, recognizing the U.K. or Irish album of the year, was presented Tuesday night in London. It is said to be judged on talent and innovation rather than commercial sales, and the winner can usually expect a surge in sales and publicity. Last year's winner was teen-aged hip-hop artist Dizzee Rascal.