Rapper slowthai brandishes severed Boris head effigy at Mercury Prize Awards

Controversy: Rapper slowthai took to the stage carrying an effigy of Boris Johnson's severed head last night at the Mercury Prize Awards. (Twitter)

Rapper slowthai sparked controversy at last night’s Mercury Prize Awards after he took to the stage carrying an effigy of Boris Johnson's severed head.

The 24-year-old, who was one of the 12 nominees for the prestigious award, screamed “f*** Boris Johnson’ at the start of his performance before dropping the model and launching into his song, Doorman.

After stripping to the waist during energetic act he picked up the head again and shouted: “F*** Boris Johnson. F*** everything”.

The audience responded with rapturous applause as the rapper left the stage.

Controversy: Slowthai was one of the final acts to perform on stage at the Awards ceremony, before the winner of the prestigious music gong was announced. (Twitter)

Slowthai, whose real name is Tyron Kaymone Frampton, was one of the final acts to perform on stage at the Eventim Apollo in west London, before the winner of the music gong was announced.

After the incident presenter Lauren Laverne then addressed the crowd saying: “Slowthai, with his own views there.”

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Slowthai was nominated for his album Nothing Great About Britain, which casts a critical eye over life in the modern UK.

He is one of 12 acts whose work has been shortlisted for the 2019 Mercury Prize but lost out to south London rapper Dave, who picked up the prize for his debut album, Psychodrama.

Nominee: Slowthai during the Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019, held at the Eventim Apollo, London.
Presenter: Lauren Laverne hosts the Hyundai Mercury Prize: Albums of the Year at Eventim Apollo, Hammersmith, London (Getty)

Judges described the album as "the musical equivalent of a literary masterpiece" which would have "lasting relevance for a generation".

On stage, he also thanked his brother Christopher Omoregie, who was jailed for life in 2012 for a knife murder, and said the story of Psychodrama was inspired by therapy his sibling received.

The Mercury Prize is awarded for the best album released in the UK by a British or Irish act and has a winning cheque for £25,000.

Among the judges is Stormzy, who sparked his own controversy by criticising then prime minister Theresa May during his performance at the Brit Awards in 2018.

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