Antony And The Johnsons Win Mercury Prize

File this one under "what the f*ck." In a surprising turn of events, Antony And The Johnsons have won this year’s Nationwide Mercury Prize. While many felt that Kaiser Chiefs had this one in the bag, or perhaps Bloc Party, MIA or Maximo Park, New York-based but English born Antony Hegarty and his band won with their album I Am Bird Now.

In an interview with NME, Hegarty said: “I think they must have made a mistake. I am completely overwhelmed. I think that's insane. It's kind of like a crazy contest between an orange and a spaceship and a potted plant and a spoon - which one do you like better?"

With so many deserving groups on this year’s list of nominees, it was really anybody’s game. Congratulations go out to Antony And The Johnsons. Don’t spend your newly awarded £20,000 all in one place! To see the award-winning group for yourself, they are touring North America for the next month. This will include a stop at NYC's Carnegie Hall! Swanky! In case you forgot who all was nominated, here is the complete list:

Bloc Party - Silent Alarm
Hard-Fi - Stars Of CCTV
Kaiser Chiefs - Employment
MIA - Arular
The Magic Numbers - The Magic Numbers
Coldplay - X&Y
The Go! Team - Thunder, Lightning Strike
Antony And The Johnsons - I Am Bird Now
KT Turnstall - Eye To The Telescope
Maximo Park - A Certain Trigger
Seth Lakeman - Kitty Jay
Polar Bear - Held On The Tips Of Fingers

Antony And The Johnsons Fall Tour
09.15.05 - Vancouver, BC (St. Andrew's-Wesley Church)
09.17.05 - Seattle, WA (Triple Door)
09.20.05 - San Francisco, CA (Palace Of Fine Arts)
09.22.05 - Los Angeles, CA (Vista Theater)
09.23.05 - San Diego, CA (San Diego Women's Club)
09.28.05 - Boston, MA (Paradise)
09.29.05 - Montreal, QC (Cabaret La Tulipe)
10.01.05 - Toronto, ON (Trinity @ St. Paul's Centre)
10.03.05 - Detroit, MI (Gem Theatre)
10.04.05 - Chicago, IL (Park West)
10.13.05 - New York, NY (Carnegie Hall)

Antony And The Johnsons Win Mercury Prize