2021 Libera Awards Nominees

A2IM is proud to recognize and  celebrate the achievements of the Independent sector. Congratulations to our over 160 nominees across 30 categories!

Record of the Year 

  • Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher (Dead Oceans)
  • Run the Jewels – RTJ4 (Jewel Runners, Inc.)
  • Perfume Genius  – Set My Heart On Fire Immediately (Matador Records)
  • Yves Tumor – Heaven To A Tortured Mind (Warp Records)
  • Thundercat – It Is What It Is (Brainfeeder)
  • Waxahatchee – Saint Cloud (Merge Records)
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Best Live/Livestream Act 

  • Run the Jewels (Jewel Runners, LLC.)
  • Phoebe Bridgers (Dead Oceans)
  • Fontaines D.C. (Partisan Records)
  • Perfume Genius (Matador Records)
  • Arca (XL Recordings)

A2IM Humanitarian Award

  • Rev. Moose    (Marauder/NIVA)
  • Killer Mike & EL-P of Run the Jewels (Jewel Runners, Inc.)
  • Megan Thee Stallion (300 Entertainment)
  • Paul Redding (Beggars Group)   
  • Kevin Liles (300 Entertainment)

Best Alternative Rock Record

  • Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher (Dead Oceans)
  • Soccer Mommy – Color Theory (Loma Vista Recordings)
  • Car Seat Headrest – Making A Door Less Open (Matador Records)
  • Lido Pimienta – Miss Colombia (Anti- Records)
  • Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever – Sideways to New Italy (Sub Pop Records)

Best Americana Record

  • Bonny Light Horseman – Bonny Light Horseman (37d03d)
  • Kevin Morby – Sundowner (Dead Oceans)
  • Calexico – Seasonal Shift (Anti- / City Slang)
  • Courtney Marie Andrews – Old Flowers (Fat Possum Records)
  • Lucinda Williams – Good Souls Better Angels (Highway 20/Thirty Tigers)

Best Blues Record

  • Bobby Rush – Rawer Than Raw (Deep Rush Records/Thirty Tigers)
  • Don Bryant – You Make Me Feel (Fat Possum Records)
  • Robert Cray Band – That’s What I Heard (Nozzle Records/Thirty Tigers)
  • Fantastic Negrito – Have You Lost Your Mind Yet? (Cooking Vinyl Ltd.)
  • Sonny Landreth – Blacktop Run (Provogue Records)

Best Classical Record

  • Erik Hall – Music for 18 Musicians (Steve Reich) (Western Vinyl)
  • Paul Moravec – Sanctuary Road (Naxos American Classics)
  • Echo Collective – The See Within (7K!)
  • Niklas Paschburg – Svalbard (7K!)
  • Vitamin String Quartet – Vitamin String Quartet Performs Lana Del Rey (CMH Label Group/Vitamin Records)

Best Country Record

  • Margo Price – That’s How Rumors Get Started (Loma Vista Recordings)
  • Waxahatchee – Saint Cloud (Merge Records)
  • Colter Wall – Western Swing & Waltzes And Other Punchy Songs (La Honda Records/Thirty Tigers)
  • Various Artists – Willie Nelson American Outlaw (Live At Bridgestone Arena/2019) (Blackbird Productions)
  • Jaime Wyatt – Neon Cross (New West Records)

Best Dance/Electronic Record

  • Caribou – Suddenly (Merge Records)
  • Arca – KiCk i (XL Recordings)
  • Ela Minus – acts of rebellion (Domino Recording Co.)
  • Yaeji – What We Drew (XL Recordings)
  • Actress – Karma & Desire (Ninja Tune)

Best Folk/Bluegrass Record

  • Ben Harper – Winter Is For Lovers (Anti- Records)
  • Angel Olsen- Whole New Mess (Jagjaguwar)
  • Gillian Welch – Boots No. 2: The Lost Songs (Acony Records)
  • Jason Molina – Eight Gates (Secretly Canadian)
  • Laura Marling – Song For Our Daughter (Partisan Records)

Best Hip-Hop/Rap Record

  • Run the Jewels – RTJ4 (Jewel Runners, Inc.)
  • clipping. – Visions of Bodies Being Burned (Sub Pop Records)
  • Little Simz – Drop 6 (AGE101/AWAL)
  • The Koreatown Oddity – Little Dominiques Nosebleed (Stones Throw Records)
  • Naeem – Startisha (37d03d)

Best Jazz Record 

(Presented by Qobuz)

  • Gil-Scott Heron & Makaya McCraven – We’re New Again – A Reimagining by Makaya McCraven (XL Recordings)
  • Jeff Parker – Suite for Max Brown (International Anthem)
  • Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Adrian Younge – Azymuth JID004 (Jazz Is Dead)
  • Christian McBride – The Movement Revisited: A Musical Portrait of Four Icons (Mack Avenue Music Group)
  • John Carroll Kirby – My Garden (Stones Throw Records)
  • Raul Midon – The Mirror    (Artistry Music)
  • Jyoti – Mama, You Can Bet! (SomeOthaShip/eOne)

Best Latin Record

  • Bad Bunny – El Último Tour Del Mundo (Rimas Entertainment)
  • Gabriel Garzón-Montano – Agüita (Jagjaguwar in partnership with Stones Throw Records)
  • The Mavericks – En Español (Mono Mundo Recordings/Thirty Tigers)
  • Buscabulla – Regresa (Ribbon Music)
  • Jungle Fire – Jungle Fire (Nacional Records)

Best Metal Record

  • Architects – “Animals” (from For Those That Wish to Exist, Epitaph Records)
  • HUM – Inlet (Earth Analog Records)
  • Ghostemane – Anti-Icon (Blackmage)
  • Ingested – Where Only Gods May Tread (Unique Leader Records)
  • Pyrrhon – Abscess Time (Willowtip Records)

Best Outlier Record 

(Presented by The Orchard)

  • Khruangbin – Mordechai (Dead Oceans)
  • Oneohtrix Point Never – Magic Oneohtrix Point Never (Warp Records)
  • Yves Tumor – Heaven To A Tortured Mind (Warp Records)
  • Beverly Glenn-Copeland – Transmissions (Transgressive/[PIAS])
  • Mary Lattimore – Silver Ladders (Ghostly International)
  • Moses Sumney – Græ (Jagjaguwar)

Best Punk Record

  • IDLESUltra Mono (Partisan Records)
  • ProtomartyrUltimate Success Today (Domino Recording Co.)
  • METZAtlas Vending (Sub Pop Records)
  • Viagra BoysCommon Sense (YEAR0001/AWAL)
  • Porridge RadioEvery Bad (Secretly Canadian)
 

Best R&B Record

  • Thundercat – It Is What It Is (Brainfeeder)
  • Khruangbin & Leon Bridges – Texas Sun (Dead Oceans)
  • Robert Glasper – “Better Than I Imagined (feat. H.E.R. & Meshell Ndegeocello)” (Loma Vista Recordings)
  • Son Little – aloha (Anti- Records)
  • Orion Sun – Hold Space For Me (Mom + Pop Music)
  • Steve Arrington – Down To The Lowest Terms (Stones Throw Records)

Best Re-Issue

  • J Dilla – Donuts (Jelly Edition)    (Stones Throw Records)
  • Pylon – Pylon Box    (New West Records)
  • Hiroshi Yoshimura – GREEN (Light In The Attic)
  • Pixies – Bossanova 30th Anniversary Reissue (4AD)
  • Motorhead – Ace of Spades 40th Anniversary (Sanctuary Records)
  • Elliott Smith – Expanded 25th Anniversary Edition (Kill Rock Stars)
  • Grandaddy – The Sophtware Slump 20th Anniversary Collection (Dangerbird Records)

 Best Rock Record 

(Presented by Mitchell; Silberberg & Knupp LLP)

  • Fontaines D.C. – A Hero’s Death (Partisan Records)
  • King Krule – Man Alive! (True Panther Sounds/Matador)
  • Bartees Strange – Mustang (from Live Forever, Memory Music)
  • Bob Mould – Blue Hearts (Merge Records)
  • Caroline Rose – Superstar (New West Records)

 Best Spiritual Record

  • Sun Ra Arkestra – Swirling (STRUT)
  • Lecrae – Restoration (Reach Records)
  • Jon Hopkins – “Singing Bowl (Ascension)” (Domino Recording Co.)
  • Thad Cockrell – If In Case You Feel The Same (ATO Records)
  • Wande – EXIT (Reach Records)

Best Sync Usage

  • Run the Jewels (Jewel Runners, Inc.) – “Ooh LA LA” – Season three of Netflix’s Ozark   
  • Black Pumas (ATO Records) “Colors” – Samsung Galaxy S20   
  • Brittany Howard (ATO Records) “You’ll Never Walk Alone” – Johnnie Walker’s #KeepWalking Campaign   
  • Blood Orange (Domino Recording Co.) “Tuesday Feeling (Choose to Stay)” – Season four of HBO’s Insecure   
  • IDLES (Partisan Records) “Grounds” – Watch Dogs: Legion

Best World Record 

(Presented by Redeye Worldwide)

  • Antibalas – Fu Chronicles (Daptone Records)
  • Bebel Gilberto – Agora ([PIAS])
  • Altin Gün – “Ordunun Dereleri” (ATO Records)
  • Songhoy Blues – Optimisme (Fat Possum Records)
  • Emel – The Tunis Diaries (Partisan Records)

Breakthrough Artist/Release 

(Presented by Ingrooves)

  • Arlo Parks (Transgressive/[PIAS])
  • Bonny Light Horseman (37d03d)
  • Overcoats (Loma Vista Recordings)
  • Arlo McKinley (Oh Boy Records)
  • Orion Sun (Mom + Pop Music)

Creative Packaging

  • Soccer Mommy – Color Theory limited edition back to school binder (Loma Vista Recordings)
  • Black Pumas – Black Pumas (Deluxe Edition) – ATO Records
  • Perfume Genius – Set My Heart On Fire Immediately vinyl (Matador Records)
  • Pylon – Pylon Box [CD Box Set](New West Records)
  • IDLES – Ultra Mono (Partisan Records)

Independent Champion

 (Presented by Merlin)

  • Bandcamp
  • SoundExchange
  • Secretly Distribution
  • TuneCore
  • The Orchard

Label of the Year (Big)

 (Presented by ADA)

  • Partisan Records
  • Sub Pop Records
  • Warp Records
  • Stones Throw Records
  • Ninja Tune

Label of the Year (Medium) 

  • Light In The Attic
  • Sacred Bones Records
  • Matador Records
  • Ghostly International
  • Rough Trade Records

Label of the Year (Small) 

(Presented by Spotify)

  • Daptone Records
  • Innovative Leisure
  • Fire Talk Records
  • International Anthem
  • Hardly Art
  • Oh Boy Records

Marketing Genius

  • Jewel Runners, LLC – Run the Jewels x Cyberpunk2077 “No Save Point”
  • Beggars Group – Supporting Indie Retail #loverecordstores Campaign
  • Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher (Dead Oceans)
  • Light In The Attic – Social Media & Digital Marketing 
  • Perfume Genius – Set My Heart On Fire Immediately Campaign (Matador Records)

Video of the Year 

  • FKA twigs – “Sad Day” (Young Turks)
  • Perfume Genius – “Describe” (Matador Records)
  • Phoebe Bridgers – “Savior Complex” (Dead Oceans)
  • Run the Jewels – “Ooh La La” (Jewel Runners, Inc.)
  • Christine and the Queens – “La vita nuova” (Because Music)
  • ford. – “Fruit&Sun” (Foreign Family Collective)