NME Awards 2015 at Brixton Academy
One of the best things about the NME awards, and the ethos of NME in general, is their eternal support for great musicians throughout their careers. From nostalgic filler music to the recognition of legendary artists and their contributions to music, this was evident from the start of the ceremony. Combine that with an on-going pursuit of innovative new talent and this is what has made the magazine so reputable. They do not simply jump on the bandwagon, they are driving the carriage, but they never forget those who have inspired them, and in turn this encourages new generations of fans and artists.
Radio 1’s Huw Stephens presided over proceedings, which saw performances from Charlie XCX, Run the Jewel and The Vaccines, to name a few. Austin, Texas was a key sponsor and with the tagline “live music capital of the world”, it’s no wonder that they back the ceremony and tour.
Jamie T was a big winner, receiving the Best Track, Best Video, and his comeback receiving the Best Musical Moment award. He accepted his awards with impassive minimalism that belies the articulate lyricism that earned him the awards.
Kasabian also had a big comeback year with album 48:13. They won Best British Band, Best Quote and Best Album, and spirits were running high as the night went on and the ample spirit selection on the artists’ tables began to flow.
The ceremony was Royal Blood-heavy, with the guys picking up Best Live Band and Best new Band, smashing out an energetic set and presenting the incredible Jimmy Paige with the one-off Rock ‘n’ Roll Soul award.
The NME Awards is a slick affair while still maintaining a rock ‘n’ roll edge and tongue-in-cheek wit. From the middle finger-shaped award and Serge Pizzorno from Kasabian stealing a piggyback from an unsuspecting stage-hand, to The Horrors’ Faris Badwan sending an impersonator in his place for an impromptu strip-tease, the tone of the evening was thoroughly light-hearted. During their acceptance speech for Best International Band, Foo Fighters let slip that they would be headlining Glastonbury. That should put to rest the rumours of the Dalai Lama taking top billing. Today has seen the guitarist Michael Clifford, of Worst Band winner 5 Seconds of Summer, tweeting about his pride at receiving the merit.
Nigel Farage was named Villain of the Year, pipping David Cameron, Taylor Swift, Harry Styles, Bono and Russell Brand to the post. This might still be considered a victory against such varied and prestigious company. Arctic Monkeys’ Alex Turner retained his crown as Hero of the Year, also beating out the likes of Taylor Swift and Russell Brand, nominated in both categories. This is characteristic of the NME’s sense of humour and the qualities they both admire and revile.
This is an awards ceremony that lauds not only music, but the various facets of entertainment associated with it. There were awards for Best Festival (Glastonbury and Liverpool Psych Fest for Best Small Festival), Book of the Year (Viv Albertine’s Clothes Clothes Clothes Music Music Music Boys Boys Boys), social media (Liam Gallagher’s twitter), and Best Film (Northern Soul). This serves as a reminder of the importance of artistry and its influence on other aspects of life.
NME partners Teenage Cancer Trust received the Outstanding Contribution to Music award. Music can play such an important and therapeutic role to young people fighting cancer and so the union of the NME and Teenage Cancer Trust makes perfect sense. Recognition of a charity that works so hard also shows a well-deserved appreciation of their efforts.
Suede received the Godlike Genius award and closed the show on a suitably divine performance, pumping out hit after hit. The gentlemen held the stage with sprightly aplomb that can only come from those who still hold conviction in their music. With not a single audience member left in their seat, they were the perfect note to wrap up an enjoyable evening of musical approbation.
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FULL WINNERS LIST:
Godlike Genius Award
Rock‘n’Roll Soul Award
Best British Band
Best International Band
Outstanding Contribution to Music
Teenage Cancer Trust
Best Solo Artist
Best New Band
Best Live Band
Jamie T – Zombie
Jamie T – Zombie
Philip Hall Radar Award
Best TV Show
Game Of Thrones
Best Music Film
Pulp: A Film About Life, Death And Supermarkets
Reissue Of The Year
Manic Street Preachers – The Holy Bible
Iggy Azalea feat. Charli XCX – Fancy
5 Seconds Of Summer
Villain Of The Year
Hero Of The Year
Music Moment Of The Year
Jamie T’s comeback
Best Fan Community
Small Festival Of The Year
Liverpool Psych Fest
Book Of The Year
Viv Albertine – Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys.
Best Band Social Media
Liam Gallagher’s Twitter
Happyness – “I’m wearing Win Butler’s hair/ There’s a scalpless singer in a Montreal rock band somewhere.”
Kasabian – “Five records, 10 years. We’ve earned our shot.” – Serge Pizzorno, (talking about their Glastonbury headline slot)