Bon Iver and Arcade Fire Win at Inaugural Libera Awards
Bon Iver and Arcade Fire picked up trophies this week at the first annual Libera Awards, the honor bestowed on independent labels and artists of merit by the American Association of Independent Music (or A2IM for short).
Bon Iver took home top honors in the Independent Album of the Year category, adding another to the long list of accolades bestowed upon their 'Bon Iver' LP, and Arcade Fire earned a nod in the Independent Video of the Year category for their 'Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)' clip.
Another of the night's big winners was Spotify, which earned the inaugural 21st Century Award for "the service or platform most beneficial to independent labels & artists." Although the economic impact of streaming services on independent artists remains a topic of hot debate, the Libera panel clearly sees a net gain, particularly where Spotify -- which boasts a catalog of more than 15 million songs and claims to have paid more than $250 million in royalties -- is concerned.
While Bon Iver and Arcade Fire are established artists, the Libera Awards (or "Libbies") also honored younger acts such as The Dø and JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound, who split the vote for the Up & Comer Award. If you're unfamiliar with their work, you're in luck -- both artists' latest albums are featured on Spotify.