Ivor Novello Awards – The 1990s

Ivor Novello Awards 1990

Grosvenor House in London hosted the Ivor Novello Awards on 2nd April 1990.

  • Best Contemporary Song: All Around the World, written by Lisa Stansfield, Ian Devaney and Andrew Morris. Also nominated: Back to Life (However Do You Want Me), performed by Soul II Soul, written by Jazzie B, Caron Wheeler, Nellee Hooper and Simon LawShe Drives Me Crazy, performed by Fine Young Cannibals, written by David Steele and Roland Gift
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: The Living Years, performed by Mike + The Mechanics, written by BA Robertson and Mike Rutherford. Also nominated: Another Day in Paradise, written by Phil Collins; Room in Your Heart, performed by Living in a Box, written by Marcus Vere, Richard Darbyshire and Albert Hammond
  • Best Theme from a TV/Radio Production: Ruth Rendell Mysteries, written by Brian Bennett. Also nominated: Sherlock Holmes, written by Patrick Gowers; Agatha Christie’s Poirot, written by Christopher Gunning
  • Best Film Theme or Song: Henry V Nons Nobis Domine, written by Patrick Doyle. Also nominated: Nothing Has Been Proved, written by Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe; Travelling East, written by Eric Clapton and Michael Kamen
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Herbert Kretzmer
  • Best Selling ‘A’ Side: Too Many Broken Hearts, performed by Jason Donovan, written by Stock Aitken Waterman (Mike Stock, Matt Aitken and Pete Waterman). Also nominated: Back to Life (However Do You Want Me); Something’s Gotten Hold of My Heart, performed by Marc Almond and Gene Pitney, written by Roger Cook and Roger Greenaway
  • International Hit of the Year: She Drives Me Crazy. Also nominated: Buffalo Stance, written by Cameron Mcvey, Philip Ramacon, Neneh Cherry and Jamie Morgan; Another Day in Paradise, written by Phil Collins
  • Best Theme from a TV/Radio Commercial: Abbey Endings (Abbey National), written by Lionel Bart. Also nominated: Big Day (Maxwell House), written by David Mindel; Terry Keeps His Clips On (Toshiba), written by Viv Stanshall
  • The Best British Musical: Aspects of Love, written by: Don Black, Charles Hart and Andrew Lloyd Webber
  • Outstanding Contribution to British Music: David Bowie
  • Most Performed Work: This Time I Know It’s for Real, written by Stock Aitken Waterman and Donna Summer. Also nominated: Something’s Gotten Hold of My HeartToo Many Broken Hearts
  • Songwriters of the Year: Stock Aitken Waterman
  • Outstanding Services to British Music: The Kinks (Mick Avory, Dave Davies, Ray Davies, Ian Gibbons and Jim Rodford)

Ivor Novello Awards 1991

The 1991 ceremony took place at Grosvenor House in London on 2nd May 1991.

  • Best Contemporary Song: Killer, written by Adam ‘Adamski’ Tinley and Seal. Also nominated: Don’t Worry, written by Kim Appleby, Craig Logan and George Deangelis; Unbelievable, performed by EMF, written by James Atken, Ian Dench, Zachary Foley, Mark Decloedt and Deran Brownson
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: Sacrifice, written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin. Also nominated: We Let the Stars Go, performed by Prefab Sprout, written by Paddy McaloonNothing Ever Happens, performed by Del Amitri, written by Justin Currie
  • Best Theme from a TV/Radio Production: Victorian Kitchen, written by Paul Reade. Also nominated: Tidy Endings, written by Stanley Myers; The Green Man, written by Tim Souster
  • Best Film Theme or Song: Witches, written by Stanley Myers. Also nominated: Arachnophobia, written by Trevor Jones; Lily Was Here, written by Dave Stewart
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: John Barry
  • Best Selling ‘A’ Side: Sacrifice / Healing Hands, written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin. Also nominated: World in Motion, performed by Englandneworder (New Order), written by Bernard Sumner, Stephen Morris, Gillian Gilbert, Keith Allen and Peter Hook; Killer, written by Adam ‘Adamski’ Tinley and Seal
  • Best Theme from a TV/Radio Commercial: Only You (Fiat Tempra), written by Geoff MacCormack and Simon Goldenberg. Also nominated: Citric Bite (Schweppes Tonic), written by Don Gould and James LowtherNick of Time (Audi), written by Tony Sadler and Gaynor Sadler
  • International Hit of the Year: All Around the World, written by Lisa Stansfield, Ian Devaney and Andrew Morris. Also nominated: Close to You, performed by Maxi Priest, written by Gary Benson, Winston Sela and Maxi Elliott; I’ve Been Thinking About You, performed by Londonbeat, written by George Chandler, Jimmy Chambers, Jimmy Helms and Liam Henshall
  • Special Award for International Achievement: Albert Hammond
  • PRS Most Performed Work: Blue Savannah, performed by Erasure, written by Andy Bell and Vince Clarke. Also nominated: All I Wanna Do Is Make Love to You, performed by Heart, written by Robert John ‘Mutt’ LangeKiller, written by Adam ‘Adamski’ Tinley and Seal
  • Outstanding Services to British Music: Robert Farnon
  • Songwriter of the Year: Phil Collins
  • Outstanding Contribution to British Music: Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, Ronnie Wood and Bill Wyman

Ivor Novello Awards 1992

May 1992 saw Grosvenor House in London host the 37th Ivor Novello Awards ceremony.

  • Best Contemporary Song: Crazy, written by Seal. Also nominated: Walking Down Madison, written by Kirsty MacColl and Johnny Marr; Sit Down, written by Timothy Booth, Lawrence Gott, James Glennie and Gavan Whelan
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: The Whole of the Moon, performed by The Waterboys, written by Mike Scott. Also nominated: The Show Must Go On, performed by Queen, written by Freddie Mercury, Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon; Stars, performed by Simply Red, written by Mick Hucknall
  • Best Theme from a TV/Radio Production: The Darling Buds of May, written by Philip Burley and Barrie Guard. Also nominated: Clarissa, written by Colin Towns; A Question of Attribution, written by Gerald Gouriet
  • Best Theme from a TV/Radio Commercial: Driven By You (Ford Motor Company), written by Brian May. Also nominated: Eagle Star – Reflections (Eagle Star Insurance), written by RAF Ravenscroft and Kevin Dillon-LambExcaliber (Carling Black Label), written by Rachel Portman
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Tony Hatch and Jackie Trent
  • Best Selling ‘A’ Side: Bohemian Rhapsody / These are the Days of Our Lives, performed by Queen, written by Freddie Mercury, Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon. Also nominated: Any Dream Will Do, performed by Jason Donovan, written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice; I’m Too Sexy, performed by Right Said Fred, written by Fred Fairbrass, Rob Manzoli and Richard Fairbrass
  • Best Film Theme or Song: Under Suspicion, written by Christopher Gunning. Also nominated: Dances with Wolves, written by John Barry; The One and Only, written by Nik Kershaw
  • International Hit of the Year: Crazy, written by Seal. Also nominated: Unbelievable; 3 AM Eternal, performed by The KLF, written by Bill Drummond, Jimmy Cauty and Ricky Lyte
  • Award in Recognition of the Exceptional Success of a Single Song: Everything I Do (I Do It For You), written by: Bryan Adams, Michael Kamen and Robert John ‘Mutt’ Lange
  • Best British Musical: Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, written by: Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice
  • PRS Most Performed Work: I’m Too Sexy. Also nominated: The One and Only, performed by Curtis Stigers, written by Nik Kershaw; Any Dream Will Do, written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice
  • Outstanding Contribution to British Music: David Gilmour, Nick Mason, Roger Waters and Richard Wright
  • Songwriter of the Year: Mick Hucknall
  • Special Award for International Achievement: Bernie Taupin
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Eric Clapton

Ivor Novello Awards 1993

26th May 1993 saw Grosvenor House in London host the Ivor Novello Awards.

  • Best Contemporary Song: Would I Lie to You, performed by Charles and Eddie, written by Peter Vale and Mick Leeson. Also nominated: Stay, performed by Shakespears Sister, written by Marcella Detroit, Siobhan Fahey and Dave Stewart; Friday I’m In Love, performed by The Cure, written by Robert Smith, Simon Gallup, Porl Thompson, Boris Williams and Perry Bamonte
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: Why, written by Annie Lennox. Also nominated: The Disappointed, performed by XTC, written by Andy Partridge; Tears in Heaven, written by Eric Clapton and Will Jennings
  • Best Theme from a TV / Radio Production: Civvies, composed by Michael Storey. Also nominated: Blackheath Poisonings, written by Colin Towns; Kyrie Eleison, written by Christopher Gunning
  • Best Film Theme or Song: Tears in Heaven, written by Eric Clapton and Will Jennings. Also nominated: Final Analysis, written by George Fenton; Chaplin, written by John Barry
  • Songwriters of the Year: Colin Angus and Richard West
  • PRS Most Performed Work: Deeply Dippy, performed by Right Said Fred, written by Fred Fairbrass, Rob Manzoli and Richard Fairbrass. Also nominated: Would I Lie to You; Stay
  • Best Selling Song: Would I Lie to You. Also nominated: Goodnight Girl, performed by Wet Wet Wet, written by Marti Pellow, Neil Mitchell, Tom Cunningham and Graeme Clark; Ain’t No Doubt, written by Jimmy Nail, Danny Schogger, Charlie Dore and Guy Pratt; Stay
  • International Hit of the Year: Would I Lie to You. Also nominated: Stay; Tears in Heaven; Why
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Les Reed
  • Outstanding Contemporary Song Collection: Marcella Detroit, Siobhan Fahey and Dave Stewart
  • Outstanding Contribution to British Music: Bernie Calvert, Allan Clarke, Bobby Elliott, Tony Hicks, Graham Nash and Terry Sylvester
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: George Shearing
  • Special Award for International Achievement: Rod Temperton

Ivor Novello Awards 1994

The 1994 ceremony took place at Grosvenor House on 25th May.

  • Best Contemporary Song: Pray, performed by Take That, written by Gary Barlow. Also nominated: Moving On Up, performed by M People, written by Paul Heard and Mike Pickering; Arranged Marriage, performed by Apache Indian, written by Stephen Kapur, Simon Duggal and Diamond Duggal
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: If I Ever Lose My Faith in You, written by Sting. Also nominated: Ordinary World, performed by Duran Duran, written by Simon Le Bon, Nick Rhodes, John Taylor and Warren Cuccurullo; I Don’t Wanna Fight, performed by Tina Turner, written by Steve Duberry, Billy Lawrie and Lulu
  • Best Theme from a TV/Radio Production: Stalag Luft, written by Stanley Myers. Also nominated: Harnessing Peacocks, written by Richard Holmes; Unnatural Causes, written by Richard Harvey
  • Best Film Theme or Song: The Piano, written by Michael Nyman. Also nominated: Into the West, written by Patrick Doyle; Indochine, written by Patrick Doyle
  • The PRS Most Performed Work: Ordinary World. Also nominated: Little Bird, written by Annie Lennox; Tears in Heaven
  • Best Selling Song: Mr Blobby, written by David Rogers and Paul Shaw. Also nominated: Dreams, written by Timothy Laws and Gabrielle; Babe, performed by Take That, written by Gary Barlow
  • The International Hit of the Year: Living on My Own, written by Freddie Mercury. Also nominated: I Feel You, performed by Depeche Mode, written by Martin Gore; Ordinary World, written by Simon Le Bon, Nick Rhodes, John Taylor and Warren Cuccurullo
  • The Outstanding Contemporary Song Collection: Paul Weller
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Roger Cook and Roger Greenaway
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Ron Goodwin
  • Outstanding Contribution to British Music: Tim Rice
  • Special Award for International Achievement: Bono, Adam Clayton, Larry Mullen Jnr and The Edge
  • Outstanding Contribution to British Musical Theatre: Andrew Lloyd Webber
  • Songwriter of the Year: Gary Barlow

Ivor Novello Awards 1995

Forty years into its history, the 1995 ceremony took place at Grosvenor House on 23rd May.

  • Outstanding Contribution to British Music: Lonnie Donegan
  • Best Contemporary Song: You Gotta Be, written by Des’ree Weekes and Ashley Ingram. Also nominated: Parklife, performed by Blurwritten by Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon, Alex James and Dave RowntreeZombieperformed by The Cranberrieswritten by Delores O’Riordan
  • Best Song Musically & Lyrically: Think Twice, performed by Celine Dion, written by Andy Hill and Peter Sinfield. Also nominated: Patience of Angels, performed by Eddi Reader, written by Boo Hewerdine; Dear John, written by Mark Nevin and Kirsty McColl
  • Best Theme from a TV/Radio Production: Middlemarch, written by Stanley Myers. Also nominated: Crocodile Shoes, written by Tony McAnaney; Beyond the Clouds, written by George Fenton
  • Best Commissioned Film Score: Shadowlands, written by George Fenton. Also nominated: Deadly Advice, written by Richard HarveyThe Joy Luck Club, written by Rachel Portman
  • Best Song Included in a Film: Circle of Life, written by Elton John and Tim Rice. Also nominated: Love is All Around, performed by Wet Wet Wet, written by Reg Presley; In the Name of Our Father, performed by U2, written by Bono, Gavin Friday and Maurice Roycroft
  • The Radio 1 Award for Continuing Innovation in Music: Brian Eno
  • The Best Selling Song: Love is All Around. Also nominated: Baby Come Back, performed by Pato Banton, written by Eddy GrantStay Another Day, performed by East 17, written by Tony Mortimer, Dominic Hawken and Robert Kean
  • International Hit of the Year: Love is All Around. Also nominated: 7 Seconds, written by Cameron McVey, Jonathan Peter Sharp, Youssou N’Dour and Neneh Cherry; Baby I Love Your Way, performed by Big Mountain, written by Peter Frampton; Without You, performed by Mariah Carey, written by Pete Ham and Tom Evans
  • The PRS Most Performed Work: Love is All Around. Also nominated: Stay Another DayBaby Come Back
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Don Black
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Van Morrison
  • The Outstanding Contemporary Song Collection: Elvis Costello
  • Songwriter of the Year: Tony Mortimer

Ivor Novello Awards 1996

Grosvenor House in London hosted the Ivor Novello Awards on 30th May 1996.

  • The PRS Most Performed Work: Back for Good, performed by Take That, written by Gary Barlow. Also nominated: No More I Love Yous, performed by Annie Lennox, written by David Freeman and Joseph Hughes; A Girl Like You, written by Edwyn Collins
  • The Best Selling Song: Back for Good. Also nominated: Fairground, performed by Simply Red, written by Mick Hucknall; Missing, performed by Everything But The Girl, written by Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt
  • International Hit of the Year: Kiss from a Rose, written by Seal. Also nominated: Back for Good; No More I Love Yous
  • Best Contemporary Song: Alright, performed by Supergrass, written by Danny Goffrey, Gaz Coombes and Michael Quinn. Also nominated: Wonderwall, performed by Oasis, written by Noel Gallagher; A Girl Like You, written by Edwyn Collins
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: Common People, performed by Pulp, written by Jarvis Cocker, Nick Banks, Candida Doyle, Steve Mackey and Russell Senior. Also nominated: No More I Love Yous; Back for Good
  • Best Commissioned Film Score: Don Juan De Marco, composed by Michael Kamen. Also nominated: Pin for the Butterfly, composed by Ilona SekaczNostradamus, composed by Barrington Pheloung
  • Best Commissioned Score from a TV/Radio Production: The Hanging Gale, written by Shaun Davey. Also nominated: Pride & Prejudice, written by Carl Davis; Yugoslavia, written by Debbie Wiseman
  • Best Song Included in a Film or Television Programme: Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman, composed by Robert John ‘Mutt’ Lange, Michael Kamen and Bryan Adams. Also nominated: Kiss from a Rose, composed by SealGoldeneye, performed by Tina Turner, composed by Bono and The Edge
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Tony Macaulay
  • Outstanding Contribution to British Musical Theatre: Cameron Mackintosh
  • An Outstanding Contemporary Song Collection: Joan Armatrading
  • Songwriters of the Year: Blur (Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon, Alex James, Dave Rowntree) and Noel Gallagher (presented jointly)
  • PRS Outstanding Contribution to British Music: Small Faces (Kenney Jones, Ronnie Lane, Steve Marriott and Ian McLagan)
  • Outstanding Services to British Music: Jeff Lynne

Ivor Novello Awards 1997

London’s Grosvenor House hosted the 1997 ceremony on 19th May.

  • PRS Award for Most Performed Work of 1996: Fast Love, written by George Michael. Also nominated: Give Me a Little More Time, written by Gabrielle, Benjamin Wolff, Andrew Dean, Ben BarsonDon’t Look Back in Anger, performed by Oasis, written by Noel Gallagher
  • Best Commissioned Film Score: 101 Dalmatians, composed by Michael Kamen. Also nominated: Independence Day, composed by David ArnoldTwelfth Night, composed by Shaun Davey
  • Best Selling British Written Single in the UK: Hetty Wainthropp Investigates, composed by Nigel Hess. Also nominated: Wannabe, performed by Spice Girls, written by Victoria Adams, Melanie Brown, Emma Bunton, Melanie Chisholm, Geri Halliwell, Matt Rowe and Richard Stannard
  • Best Music Commissioned for a Broadcast Production: Cold Lazurus, composed by Christopher GunningRhodes, composed by Alan Parker
  • Best Contemporary Song: A Design for Life, performed by Manic Street Preachers, written by James Dean Bradfield, Sean Moore and Nicky Wire. Also nominated: Lifted, performed by Lighthouse Family, written by Paul Tucker, Martin Brammer and Tunde BaiyewuFirestarter, performed by The Prodigy, written by Liam Howlett and Keith Flint
  • Outstanding Song Collection: Richard Thompson
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: Too Much Love Will Kill You, performed by Queen, written by Brian May, Frank Musker and Elizabeth Lamers. Also nominated: I Am I Feel, performed by Alisha’s Attic, written by Terence Martin, Karen Poole and Michelle PooleNeighbourhood, performed by Space, written by Thomas Scott, Andrew Parle, James Edwards and Francis Griffiths
  • International Achievement: The Cranberries (Noel Hogan and Dolores O’Riordan)
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Mike Chapman and Nicky Chinn
  • International Hit of the Year: Wannabe
  • Songwriter of the Year: George Michael
  • PRS Outstanding Contribution to British Music Award: Elvis Costello
  • Lifetime Achievement: Led Zeppelin (John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant)

Ivor Novello Awards 1998

The 1998 Ivor Novello ceremony took place on 28th May 1998 at Grosvenor House, London.

  • PRS Most Performed Work: I’ll Be Missing You (Every Breath You Take), performed by Puff Daddy, written by Sting. Also nominated: Say What you Want, performed by Texas, written by Sharleen Spiteri and Johnny McElhoneBlack Eyed Boy, performed by Texas, written by Sharleen Spiteri, Johnny McElhone, Edward Campbell, Richard Hynd and Robert Hodgens
  • Best Original Film Score: William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet, composed by Craig Armstrong, Marius De Vries and Nellee Hooper. Also nominated: Tomorrow Never Dies, composed by David ArnoldWilde, composed by Debbie Wiseman
  • Best Selling UK Single: Candle in the Wind 1997, written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin. Also nominated: Teletubbies Say Eh-Oh!, written by Andrew McCrorie-Shand; I’ll Be Missing You (Every Breath You Take)
  • Best Original Music For A Broadcast: Rebecca, composed by Christopher Gunning. Also nominated: Melissa, composed by Richard Harvey and Steve BakerCrime Traveller, composed by Anne Dudley
  • Best Contemporary Song: Karma Police, written by Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, Phil Selway, Colin Greenwood and Ed O’Brien. Also nominated: Smile, written by James McColl, Ken McAlpine and Alan TilstonThe Drugs Don’t Work, written by Richard Ashcroft
  • Best Song Collection: Johnny McElhone and Sharleen Spiteri
  • Best Original Song for a Film or Broadcast: Picture of You, written by Paul Wilson, Andy Watkins, Ronan Keating and Eliot Kennedy. Also nominated: Step By Step, written by Annie LennoxSurrender, written by David Arnold, David McAlmont and Don Black
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: Paranoid Android, performed by Radiohead, written by Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, Phil Selway, Colin Greenwood and Ed O’Brien. Also nominated: Brimful of Asha, written by Tjinder Singh; Angels, written by Robbie Williams and Guy Chambers
  • International Achievement: Enya, Nicky Ryan and Roma Ryan
  • Best Dance Music: You’re Not Alone, performed by Olive, written by Tim Kellett and Robin Taylor-Firth. Also nominated: Gunman, performed by 187 Lockdown, written by Julian Jonah and Danny HarrisonSunchyme, performed by Dario G, written by Gilbert Gabriel, Nick Laird Clowes, Stephen Spencer, Paul Spencer and Scott Rosser
  • PRS Outstanding Contribution to British Music: Morrissey
  • International Hit of the Year: Candle in the Wind 1997. Also nominated: I’ll Be Missing You (Every Breath You Take); Spice Up Your Life, performed by Spice Girls, written by Richard Stannard, Matt Rowe, Melanie Brown, Victoria Adams, Geri Halliwell, Emma Bunton and Melanie Chisholm
  • Songwriter of the Year: Richard Ashcroft
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Barry Mason

Ivor Novello Awards 1999

The 1999 Ivor Novello Awards were presented on 27th May 1999 at Grosvenor House, London.

  • PRS Most Performed Work: Angels, written by Robbie Williams and Guy Chambers. Also nominated: High, performed by Lighthouse Family, written by Paul Tucker and Tunde BaiyewuNever Ever, performed by All Saints, written by Shaznay Lewis, Sean Mather and Esmail Jazayeri
  • Best Selling UK Single: Believe, performed by Cher, written by Brian Higgins, Steve Torch, Paul Barry, Stuart McLennan, Tim Powell and Matt Gray. Also nominated: No Matter What, performed by Boyzone, written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Jim SteinmanC’est La Vie, performed by B*Witched, written by Tracy Ackerman, Ray Hedges, Martin Brannigan, Edele Lynch, Keavy Lynch, Lindsay Armaou and Sinéad O’Carroll
  • Best Original Film Score: Firelight, composed by Christopher Gunning. Also nominated: Dancing at Lughnasa, composed by Bill WhelanEver After, composed by George Fenton
  • Best Contemporary Song: Here’s Where the Story Ends, performed by Tin Tin Out, written by Harriet Wheeler and David Gavurin. Also nominated: Road Rage, performed by Catatonia, written by Mark Roberts, Cerys Matthews, David Jones, Aled Richards and Owen PowellWhat Can I Do, performed by The Corrs, written by Andrea Corr, Caroline Corr, Sharon Corr and James Corr
  • Best Original Music for a Television / Radio Broadcast: Close Relations, composed by Rob Lane. Also nominated: Life of Birds, composed by Steven Faux and Ian ButcherSelfridges: The Shop, composed by Barrie Bignold
  • Best Song Commissioned for a Film or Broadcast: The Flame Still Burns, written by Chris Difford, Marti Frederiksen and Mick Jones. Also nominated: Why Won’t You Shag Me, written by Owen Vyse and Guy PrattKipper, written by Robert Heatlie
  • Best Song Musically and Lyrically: Believe. Also nominated: C’est La Vie; A Little Soul, performed by Pulp, written by Jarvis Cocker, Nick Banks, Candida Doyle, Steve Mackey and Mark Webber
  • Outstanding Song Collection: Jamiroquai (Wallis Buchanan, Simon Katz, Jay Kay, Derrick McKenzie, Toby Smith and Stuart Zender)
  • The Ivors Dance Award: Horny, written by Mousse T and Errol Rennalls. Also nominated: Sing It Back, performed by Moloko, written by Mark Brydon and Róisín Murphy; I Can’t Help Myself, performed by Lucid, written by Mark Hadfield and Adam Ryan Carter
  • International Achievement: Martin Gore
  • The Jimmy Kennedy Award: Peter Callander and Mitch Murray
  • International Hit of the Year: Believe, written by Brian Higgins, Stuart McLennan, Paul Barry, Steve Torch, Matt Gray and Tim Powell. Also nominated: Life, written by Des’ree Weekes and Prince Sampson; No Matter What, written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Jim Steinman
  • PRS Outstanding Contribution to British Music: Chrissie Hynde
  • The Special International Award: Hal David
  • Songwriters of the Year: Guy Chambers and Robbie Williams
  • Lifetime Achievement: Rod Stewart

Further Reading

The Shamen – UV

The Shamen always seemed pretty daft and short-lived, and so it’s odd to think about reviewing one of their albums two whole decades after its release. Odder still, when that album is UV.

This was their final release, following two years after their final release on One Little Indian, Hempton Manor. The story goes that they were trying very hard to get themselves released from that contract, but having done so, The Shamen were effectively over. Perhaps it is no surprise, then, that UV is a little uninspired at best.

Opening track Mercury offers little new. The beats are, perhaps, a little more house-inspired than previously, but otherwise this could have fit well on Axis Mutatis (1995). That’s a good thing – Axis Mutatis was a great album, but it’s perhaps surprising that three years later they were opening an album with something so similar.

The album had launched with the single Universal, but oddly The Shamen have never quite seemed to be able to bring their own ideas into full fruition without a little help (as witnessed by all the Beatmasters remixes of singles which turned out to be so much better than the originals). So it is that 187 Lockdown‘s handiwork on Universal is what really brings it to life. With that, it’s a great mix of deep house, and the dance/pop crossover that The Shamen were so good at.

The mix of interplanetary and old world references were one of the things that had characterised Axis Mutatis, accompanying tracks that were probably very good for taking drugs to, and so having got the single out of the way, UV settles back in with more of the same. Palen (K) is a very good instrumental, driven by a huge acid bass line. Nothing new, but nothing bad either. Beamship – Brief Sighting is a short beatsy thing that doesn’t seem entirely sure what it wants to be.

You’ll experience a brief moment of joy as I Do sounds a lot like Ebeneezer Goode for exactly one note, and having got past that, it’s a pretty good song, with some nice vocal work but the lyrical drivel that you should absolutely be used to by now. As with a lot of The Shamen‘s own production work, it almost works. Imagine how good this would have been if The Beatmasters had been allowed to get their hands on it.

Pop is next, a big, slow instrumental that takes some inspiration from preceding albums Hempton Manor and Arbor Bona Arbor Mala, the exceptional bonus disc that accompanied Axis Mutatis. It’s not quite as good as any of that, but having accepted that this is a bit of a career retrospective album, it’s good to have a nod to it here.

One of the more misguided things on this release are the multiple versions of Universal, which does make it feel as though it was thrown together pretty quickly from a few random leftovers. 1999‘s version is pretty poor – all the interesting parts of the earlier version have been removed, and replaced with dull house beats, and not a lot else. Even the fade at the end seems to have been slapped on in less time than it took the track to play.

Sativa ’98 is an updated version of an underground 12″ that the duo had released the preceding year, and it’s another pleasant house instrumental, taking a lot of influence from those preceding instrumental albums again. It’s the sort of thing that I feel I’d enjoy more as a single track on an obscure vinyl white label – on an album, or on this album anyway, it just doesn’t quite seem to work.

Serpent is typically daft, but it’s probably the best track on here actually. Again, there’s nothing particularly new here, but it does at least show The Shamen at their best – silly lyrics against great, banging dance music. My apologies for the use of the word “banging” there, but it seemed appropriate.

Next is Mr. C‘s club mix of U Nations, which seems to be different from Universal, although it’s not entirely clear how, as some of the lyrics are shared between the two. I’m not sure my brain can cope with this, but at least some of it appears to be borrowed from Universal, which makes it the third time they’ve put it on here. Is that really necessary?

For Marca Huasi, we get an exploration of drum and bass, territory into which The Shamen had strayed a couple of times before, and you feel as though they almost know what they’re doing, but it doesn’t completely work here. It’s good, but it’s not great. The Technical Itch mix of Sfynx is better, an instrumental, still drum and bass, but they haven’t tried to mix a song into it, so it’s clearer what it’s trying to be.

Finally, we get Metatron, which particularly seems to be echoing Axis Mutatis, but this time they do it well, with the slightly frenzied beats and lyrics that are probably as silly as ever, but aren’t really audible. And then the album draws to a close. So UV isn’t a bad career retrospective for The Shamen, but it’s probably a good thing that they never followed it up – there’s little new here apart from the discovery of house beats.

This album is no longer available new, but you should be able to find second-hand copies floating around.