A raft of pro audio and music industry talent turned out in force for the 2020 MPG Awards, which took place at London’s Grosvenor House last night.
Producers, engineers, artists and industry executives came together to celebrate some of the finest achievements from the world of pro audio at the 2020 gala ceremony. Among the big winners on the night were Dan Carey (UK Producer of the Year), Daniel Moyler (Recording Engineer fo the Year), Marta Salogni (Breakthrough Producer of the Year), Stormzy (UK Single Song release of the Year – ‘Vossi Bop’) and The Church Studios (Studio of the Year).
Mix Engineer of the Year was awarded to Mark ‘Spike’ Stent, while Breakthrough Engineer of the Year went to Caesar Edmunds. Meanwhile, Finneas O’Connell was the recipient of International Producer of the Year and Matt Colton won Mastering Engineer of The Year.
Daniel Moyler, recipient of the Recording Engineer of the Year award, commented on how it felt to win: “It felt a little bit silly you know, there’s so many amazing people here tonight that are heroes of mine. It’s kind of ridiculous to be on the same piece of paper as them, but I’m really proud of the work I’ve done over the last year.
He also talked about some of the work that led him to winning this year’s Recording Engineer accolade: “Now working with a few of the same people and similar projects, like with Shura, it’s our second record together, and Cam Blackwood, who I engineered for, we worked a lot together. And I feel like it’s a good team and I’m privileged to work with a diverse range of artists – rock bands, pop bands, electronic music and all sorts – and that’s nice as it reflects what I listen to. I think I’d be very bored working on the same stuff again and again.”
Matt Colton, Mastering Engineer of the Year, said of winning and being presented the award by renowned rapper Kano: “It’s a huge honour, it really is, because it’s peer review it feels really valid. I’m very lucky, I love my job. It is the only award for mastering engineers, and that’s nice as mastering engineers need love too. It provides a really valid part of the music making process, and I fucking love it. It’s all I’ve done for my whole adult life. And with people like Kano coming out to say hello, I’m so touched and thrown by that. He’s a busy man, he’s on tour at the minute, and to give up his free time to present the award to me…I’m honoured.”
The winner of Re-mixer of the Year, UNKLE, was surprised to win, as it is now the fourth time. He said: “I might be at the end of a good run, but maybe I’m the Ronaldo of re-mixes. If you’re out on a weekend, probably most of the music you’re listening to is a remix. I think with the way music is made now, re-mixing is a larger thing, it’s about bringing out certain elements for certain environments, such as dance environments. I also get re-mixed and it’s nice to give records different life in different places, and it allows records to have life over a long period of time.”
As is customary at the MPG Awards, a trio of special awards were also presented on the night. Legendary The Smiths and Blur producer Stephen Street was honoured with the Outstanding Contribution to UK Music Award, while the MPG Inspiration Award went to Stormzy. Urban Development founder Pamela McCormick won the 2020 Special Recognition Award. She told PSNEurope: “It feels amazing to win this award, and it really feels like the organisation’s work has been supported by the wider music industry. We are now part of an ecosystem that is increasingly recognising the need to provide talent development for a diverse group of young people. We’ve come a very long way from the tiny project that we started in 1996. But over that 20-plus year span the music industry has shifted massively, our funding partners have shifted and the range of people who support us has shifted enormously. We have myriad music industry partners, including a longstanding relationship with Universal, we work with Bucks Music, Believe, the BRITs, UK Music and the BPI. Our world is now much closer to the industry and its desire to engage with diverse young people.”
Speaking to PSNEurope about The 1975’s UK Album of the Year success, Matt Healy said: “This place is good to us. We feel deeply humbled in the presence of our fellow nerds. This record happened over a long period of time. On our first two records we had this guidance from Mike Crossey, he helped us really understand how to use a studio, because before that we pretty much just made our EPs and other stuff in George’s bedroom. With this record we basically just moved into a house and did it over a year. It was this super extended session, so there was a lot of time for mistakes and embracing limitations. It is the first record we’ve done just us in a room.”
See below for the full list of winners.
UK Producer Of The Year, sponsored by Flare Audio
Recording Engineer Of The Year, sponsored by AMS Neve
Mix Engineer Of The Year, sponsored by Miloco Studios
Mark ‘Spike’ Stent
Re-mixer Of The Year, sponsored by Headliner
Breakthrough Producer Of the Year, sponsored by Focusrite
Self-Producing Artist Of The Year, sponsored by Avid
Matthew Healy, George Daniel (The 1975)
Breakthrough Engineer Of The Year, sponsored by Genelec
International Producer Of The Year, sponsored by Air Studios
Mastering Engineer Of The Year, sponsored by Steinberg
UK Album Of The Year, sponsored by Daft Studios
The 1975: A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships
UK Single Song Release Of The Year, sponsored by Shure
Stormzy: Vossi Bop produced by Chris
The A&R Award, sponsored by The Association Of Independent Music (AIM)
Studio Of The Year, sponsored by MQA
The Church Studios
The MPG 2019 Awards categories in the gift of the MPG are:
The MPG Inspiration Award, sponsored by Audio Note, which was awarded to Stormzy
PPL Present The MPG Award For Outstanding Contribution To UK Music, sponsored by PPL and awarded to Stephen Street
The Special Recognition Award, sponsored by Jigsaw24, was given to Pamela McCormick