KIWANUKA sales surge after Hyundai Mercury Prize win

This boost in sales marks the biggest chart impact for the Hyundai Mercury Prize winner since The XX triumphed in 2010.

Maya Radcliffe
  • By Maya Radcliffe
  • 2 Oct 2020
  • min read

The BPI has reported a massive surge in demand for Michael Kiwanuka’s album KIWANUKA following his Mercury Prize win last week.

As reported by the Official Charts Company earlier this week, KIWANUKA, which re-entered the Top 100 after being Hyundai Mercury Prize shortlisted and was at No.78 just last week, has reached No.2 in the midweek charts and is on course for at least a Top 5 finish when the latest Official Albums Chart is announced today (2 October).

The dramatic climb up the charts reflects a 4,537 percent rise in purchases of the album over the past week across vinyl, CD and downloads and a rise of almost 800 percent in the number of audio streams of the album’s tracks.

Demand for the other shortlisted artists has also shown a significant rise due to the Hyundai Mercury Prize spotlight, with Official Charts data showing a combined increase in physical and downloaded album sales of 515 percent. These include Lanterns On The Lake Spook The Herd (+425 percent), Anna Meredith FIBS (+421 percent), Georgia Seeking Thrills (+220 percent), Porridge Radio Every Bad (+192 percent), Moses Boyd Dark Matter (+180 percent), Laura Marling Song For Our Daughter (+72 percent), Sports Team Deep Down Happy (+49 percent) and Kano Hoodies All Summer (+56 percent).

Even shortlisted artists who have already enjoyed No.1 albums are showing a rise in demand with sales of Dua Lipa’s Future Nostalgia up by just over a quarter (27 percent) and Stormzy’s Heavy is the Head rising by a fifth (19 percent).

Geoff Taylor, chief executive, BPI, said: ‘As the nation’s foremost Arts Prize for music, the Hyundai Mercury Prize celebrates the very best music of the year across all genres, and helps to bring it to a wider audience. In such a challenging year, we are delighted by the impact of the expanded BBC broadcast coverage and by the huge response to Michael’s deserved win. We encourage fans to dive into all twelve Albums of the Year 2020 – there is so much profound brilliance to discover.’

The Hyundai Mercury Prize Albums of the Year award celebrates and promotes the best of UK music, recognising artistic achievement across an eclectic range of contemporary music genres.