NME Awards – 2012-2014

By 2012, the NME Awards were positively contemporary. Let’s take a look at the awards through to 2014.

NME Awards 2012

Below is the full list of nominations for the event, which will be held at the O2 Academy Brixton on February 29.

  • Godlike Genius Award: Noel Gallagher
  • Outstanding Contribution to Music: Pulp
  • Best British Band: Kasabian. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, Bombay Bicycle Club, The Horrors, Muse
  • Best International Band: Foo Fighters. Also nominated: Arcade Fire, JusticeOdd Future, The Strokes
  • Best Solo Artist: Florence + the Machine. Also nominated: Adele, Frank Turner, Laura Marling, Miles Kane, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
  • Best New Band: The Vaccines. Also nominated: Foster The People, Lana Del Rey, Tribes, Wu Lyf
  • Best Live Band: Arctic Monkeys. Also nominated: Kasabian, Muse, Pulp, Two Door Cinema Club
  • Best Album: The Horrors, for Skying. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, for Suck It And SeeNoel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, for Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, PJ Harvey, for Let England Shake, The Vaccines, for What Did You Expect From The Vaccines?
  • Best Track: Florence + the Machine, for Shake It Out. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, for The Hellcat Spangled Shalalala, Bombay Bicycle Club, for Shuffle, Hurts, for Sunday, Lana Del Rey, for Video Games
  • Best Video: Hurts, for Sunday. Also nominated Arctic Monkeys, for Suck It And See, Beyoncé, for Countdown, Lana Del Rey, for Video Games, Tyler, The Creator, for Yonkers
  • Best Festival: Glastonbury. Also nominated: Bestival, Reading & Leeds, T In The Park, V Festival
  • Best TV Show: Fresh Meat. Also nominated: Doctor Who, Misfits, Never Mind The Buzzcocks, This Is England ’88
  • Best Film: Submarine. Also nominated: Black Swan, Drive, Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 2, The Inbetweeners Movie
  • Best Music Film: Foo Fighters, for Back and Forth. Also nominated: George Harrison, for Living In The Material World, Kings Of Leon, for Talihina Sky, The Libertines, for There Are No Innocent Bystanders, Upside Down – The Creation Records Story
  • Best Dancefloor Anthem: Katy B, for Broken Record. Also nominated: Azealia Banks, for 212, Foster The People, for Pumped Up Kicks, Justice, for Civilization, Metronomy, for The Bay
  • Hero of the Year: Matt Bellamy. Also nominated: Alex Turner, Dave Grohl, Noel Fielding, Noel Gallagher
  • Villain of the Year: Justin Bieber. Also nominated: David Cameron, Lady Gaga, Liam Gallagher, Nick Clegg
  • Worst Album: Justin Bieber, for Under the Mistletoe. Also nominated: Coldplay, for Mylo Xyloto, Lady Gaga, for Born This Way, One Direction, for Up All Night, Viva Brother, for Famous First Words
  • Worst Band: One Direction. Also nominated: Beady Eye, Coldplay, Muse, Viva Brother
  • Hottest Male: Jared Leto (30 Seconds To Mars). Also nominated: Andy Biersack (Black Veil Brides), Dominic Howard (Muse), Gerard Way (My Chemical Romance), Matt Bellamy (Muse)
  • Hottest Female: Hayley Williams (Paramore). Also nominated: Amy Lee (Evanescence), Florence Welch (Florence + the Machine), Katy Perry, Marina Diamandis (Marina And The Diamonds)
  • Best Album Artwork: Friendly Fires, for Pala. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, for Suck It And See, Bombay Bicycle Club, for A Different Kind Of Fix, Björk, for Biophilia, Jay-Z and Kanye West, for Watch The Throne
  • Best Band Blog or Twitter: Lady Gaga, for @LadyGaga. Also nominated: Example, for @Example, Frank Turner, for Frank-Turner.com/blog, Kanye West, for @KanyeWest, Hurts, for @Theohurts
  • Most Dedicated Fans: Muse. Also nominated: 30 Seconds To Mars, Arctic Monkeys, Hurts, My Chemical Romance
  • Best Book: Noel Fielding, for The Scribblings of a Madcap Shambleton, Jared Leto, for Notes From The Outernet, Jarvis Cocker, for Mother, Brother, Lover: Selected Lyrics, Malcolm X, for A Life Of Reinvention, Shaun Ryder, for Twisting My Melon
  • Best Small Festival: RockNess. Also nominated: Field Day, Hop Farm, Kendal Calling, Latitude
  • Best Reissue: The Smiths, for Complete Re-issues. Also nominated: Manic Street Preachers, for National Treasures, Nirvana, for Nevermind, Primal Scream, for Screamadelica, The Rolling Stones, for Some Girls
  • Greatest Music Moment of the Year: The Stone Roses reunite. Also nominated: Brian May joins My Chemical Romance onstage at Reading Festival, Kasabian see in 2012 with their epic London O2 Arena show, Noel Gallagher launches his solo career with press conference, Pulp steal the show at Glastonbury with secret set

NME Awards 2013

London’s Troxy on Wednesday, February 27, 2013:Host: Russell Kane

  • Godlike Genius Award: Johnny Marr
  • Philip Hall Radar Award: The Child of Lov
  • Teenage Cancer Trust Outstanding Contribution to Music: The Cribs
  • Best British Band: Biffy Clyro. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, Kasabian, The Vaccines, The Maccabees, The Cribs
  • Best International Band: The Killers. Also nominated: Tame Impala, The Black Keys, Odd Future, Crystal Castles, Foo Fighters
  • Best Solo Artist: Florence + the Machine. Also nominated: Jake Bugg, Noel Gallagher, Miles Kane, Grimes, Paul Weller
  • Best New Band: Palma Violets. Also nominated: Alt-J, Peace, Django Django, Alabama Shakes, Haim
  • Best Live Band: The Rolling Stones. Also nominated: The Maccabees, The Cribs, Blur, Biffy Clyro, Foals
  • Best Album: The Maccabees, for Given to the Wild. Also nominated: Frank Ocean, for Channel Orange, Jake Bugg, for Jake Bugg, Alt-J, for An Awesome Wave, The Vaccines, for Come Of Age, Tame Impala, for Lonerism
  • Best Track: Foals, for Inhaler. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, for R U Mine?, Haim, for Don’t Save Me, MIA, for Bad Girls, Palma Violets, for Best Of Friends, Tame Impala, for Elephant
  • Best Music Video: Arctic Monkeys, for R U Mine?. Also nominated: Grimes, for Oblivion, MIA, for Bad Girls, David Bowie, for Where Are We Now?, Haim, for Don’t Save Me, Tame Impala, for Feels Like We Only Go Backwards
  • Best Festival: Reading & Leeds. Also nominated: T In The Park, Bestival, Primavera, Latitude, Isle of Wight
  • Best TV Show: Fresh Meat. Also nominated: Breaking BadNoel Fielding’s Luxury ComedySherlockThe Thick Of ItDoctor Who
  • Best Film: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Also nominated: TediLL ManorsThe Dark Knight RisesSkyfallThe Perks Of Being A Wallflower
  • Best Music Film: The Rolling Stones, for Crossfire Hurricane. Also nominated: Searching For Sugar ManLCD Soundsystem, for Shut Up And Play The HitsHit So Hard: The Life & Near Death Story of Patty Schemel Marley, Led Zeppelin, for Celebration Day
  • Dancefloor Anthem: Calvin Harris feat. Florence Welch, for Sweet Nothing. Also nominated: Mosca featuring Katy B, for What You Came For, Psy, for Gangnam Style, MIA, for Bad Girls, Kanye West and Jay-Z, for Paris, Solange, for Losing You
  • Hero of the Year: Barack Obama. Also nominated: David Bowie, Bradley Wiggins, Pussy Riot, Frank Ocean, Dave Grohl
  • Villain of the Year: Harry Styles. Also nominated: David Cameron, Skrillex, Psy, Fred Macpherson, Azealia Banks
  • Worst Band: One Direction. Also nominated: Muse, Mumford & Sons, Alt-J, Justin Bieber, Ed Sheeran
  • Hottest Man: Matthew Bellamy
  • Hottest Woman: Amy Lee
  • Best Band Blog or Twitter: Alana Haim (Haim), for @babyhaim. Also nominated: Muse, for @muse, Fred Macpherson (Spector), for @fredmacpherson, Theo Hutchcraft (Hurts), for @theohurts, Wiley, for @EskiDance, MIA, for @MIAuniverse
  • Best Fan Community: Muse. Also nominated: Hurts, 30 Seconds To Mars, Manic Street Preachers, The Killers, Enter Shikari
  • Best Book: Mike Skinner (The Streets), for The Story of the Streets. Also nominated: David Byrne, for How Music Works, Neil Young, for Waging Heavy Peace, Tim Burgess, for Telling Stories, The Rolling Stones, for 50, Peter Hook, for Unknown Pleasures: Inside Joy Division
  • Best Small Festival: Festival No. 6. Also nominated: Sŵn, The Great Escape, Field Day, End Of The Road, Constellations
  • Best Reissue: Blur, for 21. Also nominated: Manic Street Preachers, for Generation Terrorists, The Prodigy, for The Fat Of The Land, Interpol, for Turn On The Bright Lights, Smashing Pumpkins, for Mellon Collie And The Infinite Sadness, Ian Brown, for Collected
  • Music Moment of the Year: 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony. Also nominated: David Bowie‘s comeback, The Stone Roses comeback shows at Heaton Park, The Rolling Stones 50th anniversary show at London’s O2 Arena, Green Day‘s secret set at Reading Festival, Pussy Riot‘s punk prayer

NME Awards 2014

February 26 at London’s O2 Academy in Brixton. Host: Huw Stephens

  • Godlike Genius Award: Blondie
  • Songwriters’ Songwriter: Paul McCartney
  • Award For Innovation: Damon Albarn
  • Teenage Cancer Trust Outstanding Contribution to Music Award: Belle and Sebastian
  • Best British Band: Arctic Monkeys. Also nominated: Foals, Palma Violets, Biffy Clyro, Disclosure, Two Door Cinema Club
  • Best International Band: Haim. Also nominated: Arcade Fire, Queens Of The Stone Age, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Phoenix, Vampire Weekend
  • Best Solo Artist: Lily Allen. Also nominated: Lorde, Jake Bugg, Paul McCartney, Kanye West, David Bowie
  • Best New Band: Drenge. Also nominated: Swim Deep, Chvrches, Jagwar Ma, Wolf Alice, Courtney Barnett
  • Best Live Band: Arctic Monkeys. Also nominated: Palma Violets, Biffy Clyro, Haim, Queens of the Stone Age, Savages
  • Best Album: Arctic Monkeys, for AM. Also nominated: Queens Of The Stone Age, for Like Clockwork, Peace, for In Love, Kanye West, for Yeezus, Savages, for Silence Yourself, Drenge, for Drenge
  • Best Track: Disclosure, for White Noise. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, for Do I Wanna Know?, Lily Allen, for Hard Out Here, Arcade Fire, for Reflektor, Primal Scream, for 2013, Daft Punk, for Get Lucky
  • Best Music Video: Eagulls, for Nerve Endings. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, for Why’d You Only Call Me When You’re High?, Pharrell, for Happy, Arcade Fire, for Reflektor, Lily Allen, for Hard Out Here, Haim, for Falling
  • Best Festival: Glastonbury. Also nominated: Reading & Leeds, T In The Park, Latitude, Bestival, V
  • Best TV Show: Breaking Bad. Also nominated: Fresh Meat, Sherlock, Game Of Thrones, Misfits, Doctor Who
  • Best Music Film – The Stone Roses, for Made of Stone. Also nominated: Muscle ShoalsSound CityThe National, for Mistaken For StrangersGood VibrationsMuse
  • Philip Hall Radar Award: Fat White Family
  • Best Reissue – The Clash, for Sound System. Also nominated: Nirvana, for In Utero: 20th Anniversary Edition, The Beta Band, for The Regal Years: 1997-2004, The Breeders, for LSXX (Last Splash 20th Anniversary Edition), Bob Dylan, for Bootleg Series, Vol. 10: Another Self Portrait (1969-1971), The Velvet Underground, for White Light/White Heat 45th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition
  • Best Band Blog Or Twitter – Alana Haim (Haim). Also nominated: Jehnny Beth (Savages), Albert Hammond Jr, James Blunt, Theo Hutchcraft (Hurts), Grimes
  • Best Book: Morrissey, for Autobiography. Also nominated: Alan McGee, for Creation Stories, Bob Stanley, for Yeah Yeah Yeah, Mark Lewisohn, for The Beatles – All These Years: Volume One: Tune In, Beck, for Song Reader, Richard Hell, for I Dreamed I Was A Very Clean Tramp
  • Best Small Festival: Sŵn. Also nominated: RockNess, Y Not, Kendall Calling, Green Man, Festival Number 6
  • Best Fan Community: Arctic Monkeys. Also nominated: Hurts, Haim, Muse, Peace, Morrissey
  • Music Moment of the Year: Noel Gallagher and Damon Albarn come together for Teenage Cancer Trust. Also nominated: Pussy Riot are freed, Arctic Monkeys headline Glastonbury, Rolling Stones headline Glastonbury, Morrissey‘s autobiography is released, Kanye West brings Jesus impersonator on stage
  • Worst Band: The 1975. Also nominated: One Direction, The Wanted, Imagine Dragons, 30 Seconds To Mars, Muse
  • Hero of the Year: Alex Turner. Also nominated: David Bowie, Este Haim, Russell Brand, Pussy Riot, Lou Reed
  • Villain of the Year: Harry Styles. Also nominated: Miley Cyrus, Robin Thicke, David Cameron, Vladimir Putin, Russell Brand

See also

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New Order – Lost Sirens

As used to be customary after major New Order albums, they basically imploded after Waiting for the Sirens’ Call. They had had a pretty good year, closing it out with their brilliantly comprehensive Singles compilation, and there was an extensive tour, but then in May 2007, things got very confusing. As you probably remember, Peter Hook appeared in an interview and said that New Order had split up, to which the rest of the band responded, “no we didn’t,” and we’ve now been treated to a decade or so of Hook moaning about how badly he was treated while the rest of them seem to put their fingers in their ears and sing “la la la, I’m not listening”. There are some real issues there, but it all comes across as very childish.

It took another six years for Lost Sirens to appear, but it’s pretty amazing that it did. Plugging the gap firmly between Waiting for the Sirens’ Call, when they had Peter Hook, and Music Complete, when they no longer did, you get this. It opens with I’ll Stay with You, which is comfortably better than most of the tracks on the preceding album. It’s a great, catchy song, with some great contributions from Hook.

Even Sugarcane, hinting somewhat at some of Bernard Sumner‘s dafter lyrical moments, is still another catchy and memorable song. What’s notable here is that whereas the parent album was gloomy and rock-infused, this is positively chirpy.

Recoil gives us a more acoustically-focused piece, with some great (electric?) piano work alongside Hook’s unforgettable bass lines. If this had been the last album New Order ever recorded together, it would have been an excellent way to leave – think what you like of Music Complete, the end of the Peter Hook era definitely left listeners on a high. You just have to put emotions to one side – a bit like being in a band, really.

I think California Grass is probably my favourite track on here. It’s also the most rock-sounding, with some relatively big guitars, but they stay subdued and hold back on too much extreme wankery. It just feels like an epic coastal road trip song, somehow.

This is a compilation at heart though, and the track listing is appropriately odd. Hellbent, which snuck out on a compilation a couple of years earlier, is good, but it’s not great. Shake it Up starts off sounding like one of Electronic‘s better moments, but ultimately fails to deliver, particularly once the wah-wah turns up. “I read your book from front to cover,” must surely be up there among Sumner’s worst lyrics ever?

I’ve Got a Feeling is better – it starts off particularly promisingly, although things fall apart quickly during the verse, and despite a catchy chorus, it still sounds a bit generic. The first half of this mini-album was definitely better than the second. To close things out, I Told You So was up there with Jetstream as one of the best tracks on the last album, and now we get a remix of it, the Crazy World mix. It’s huge, epic, and… well, very disappointing. In this century, the guitar-based version of New Order simply isn’t as good as the electronic version. So roll on Music Complete, the album where for the first time in a long time, they really understood who they were, and did it well.

For all my misgivings, Lost Sirens is a pretty good release, and I’m glad we got it, even somewhat belatedly. Is it better than Waiting for the Sirens’ Call? Well, they’re probably about the same, but this does at least have a nice stack of uplifting tracks at the start, which can’t be said for its predecessor.

You can find Lost Sirens at all major retailers.

NME Poll Winners 1952-1992 (Part Two)

Finally, having worked through all the other categories, let’s take a look at the artist winners for the NME Polls from 1952 to 1992. As I mentioned last week, it’s hard to trace the winners of a particular category through time, so I’ve taken a few liberties. Essentially anything that seems to be roughly the same category has been treated as the same thing. Also, for the year ranges, there are a few missing years here and there, so for instance 1967-1970 could mean anything between 2 and 3 wins.

Best Newcomer

For thirty-five years, the NME Poll included a newcomer award, variously titled “World’s Most Promising New Name”, “Best New Group”, and various other things. It’s an amazing time capsule of new acts throughout the ages – who would have thought that Cliff Richard and The Stone Roses could appear on the same list?

Best New Artist

  • 1956 – Ronnie Scott
  • 1958 – Cliff Richard
  • 1959 – Craig Douglas
  • 1960 – Emile Ford
  • 1961 – John Leyton
  • 1962 – Frank Ifield
  • 1963 – Gerry Marsden
  • 1964 – Mick Jagger
  • 1965 – Seekers (group) & Donovan (solo)
  • 1966 – Spencer Davis Group (group) & Stevie Winwood (solo)
  • 1967 – Bee Gees (group) & Engelbert Humperdinck (solo)
  • 1968 – Love Affair (group & Mary Hopkins (solo)
  • 1970 – Jethro Tull
  • 1971 – McGuinness Flint (group) & Elton John (solo)
  • 1972 – New Seekers (group) & Rod Stewart (solo)
  • 1973 – Golden Earring (World) & Leo Sayer (British)
  • 1975 – Bad Company
  • 1976 – Eddie and the Hot Rods
  • 1977 – Tom Robinson
  • 1978 – Public Image Ltd.
  • 1979 – The Specials
  • 1980 – UB40
  • 1981 – Altered Images
  • 1983 – The Smiths
  • 1984 – Bronski Beat
  • 1985 – The Jesus and Mary Chain
  • 1986 – The Housemartins
  • 1987 – The Proclaimers
  • 1988 – The House of Love
  • 1989 – The Stone Roses
  • 1990 – The Charlatans
  • 1991 – Kingmaker
  • 1992 – Suede

Technical Categories

A lot of categories seem to have come and gone throughout the history of the awards to celebrate particular types of performer. Here are some of the highlights!

Musician of the Year

  • 1952 – Ronnie Scott
  • 1954 – Eric Delaney
  • 1957 – Eddie Calvert

Best Guitarist

  • 1954 – Bert Weedon
  • 1973 – Eric Clapton
  • 1976 – Jimmy Page
  • 1978 – Mick Jones
  • 1979-1982 – Paul Weller
  • 1983 – The Edge

Best Bassist

  • 1973, 1976 – Paul McCartney
  • 1978 – Jean Jacques Burnel
  • 1979-1982 – Bruce Foxton
  • 1983 – Peter Hook

Best Keyboardist/Electronics

  • 1973, 1976-1977 – Rick Wakeman
  • 1978-1981 – Dave Greenfield
  • 1982 – Vince Clarke
  • 1983 – Steve Nieve

Best Drummer

  • 1973, 1975 – Carl Palmer
  • 1976 – John Bonham
  • 1977 – Paul Cook
  • 1978 – Keith Moon
  • 1979-1982 – Rick Buckler
  • 1983 – Budgie

Best Instrumentalist

  • 1962-1963 – Jet Harris
  • 1973 – Roy Wood
  • 1975-1977 – Mike Oldfield
  • 1981 – Saxa
  • 1982 – The Emerald Express, Violin
  • 1983 – The TKO Horns
  • 1985 – Johnny Marr

Best Producer

  • 1973 – David Bowie
  • 1975 – Eddie Offord

Best Songwriter/Composer

  • 1973 – Elton John / Bernie Taupin
  • 1976 – Bob Dylan
  • 1978 – Elvis Costello
  • 1979-1982 – Paul Weller
  • 1983 – Elvis Costello
  • 1984-1985 – Morrissey / Johnny Marr

Best Solo Artist

Curiously, the solo artist categories were for the longest time broken up into “world”, “British”, and even “US” for a while.

Best Female Singer

  • 1952-1954 – Lita Roza
  • 1957 – Ruby Murray
  • 1958 – Alma Cogan
  • 1959-1961 – Connie Francis
  • 1962-1964 – Brenda Lee
  • 1965-1967 – Dusty Springfield
  • 1968 – Lulu
  • 1970 – Dusty Springfield
  • 1971-1973 – Diana Ross
  • 1975 – Joni Mitchell
  • 1976 – Linda Ronstadt
  • 1977 – Julie Covington
  • 1978 – Debbie Harry
  • 1979 – Kate Bush
  • 1981-1983 – Siouxsie Sioux
  • 1984-1986 – Elizabeth Fraser
  • 1987 – Suzanne Vega

Best British Female Singer

  • 1955, 1957 – Alma Cogan
  • 1959-1960 – Shirley Bassey
  • 1961-1962 – Helen Shapiro
  • 1963 – Kathy Kirby
  • 1964-1966 – Dusty Springfield
  • 1968, 1970 – Lulu
  • 1971-1972 – Cilla Black
  • 1973 – Maggie Bell
  • 1975 – Kiki Dee

Best US Female Singer

  • 1955-1957 – Doris Day
  • 1958 – Connie Francis

Best Male Singer

  • 1952-1954 – Dickie Valentine
  • 1955 – Frank Sinatra
  • 1956 – Dickie Valentine
  • 1958 – Frankie Vaughan
  • 1959-1962 – Elvis Presley
  • 1963 – Cliff Richard
  • 1964-1972 – Elvis Presley
  • 1973 – David Bowie
  • 1975-1976 – Robert Plant
  • 1977-1978 – David Bowie
  • 1979 – Sting
  • 1980 – Paul Weller
  • 1981 – David Bowie
  • 1982 – Paul Weller
  • 1983 – David Bowie
  • 1984 – Bono
  • 1985-1992 – Morrissey

Best British Male Singer

  • 1955, 1957 – Dickie Valentine
  • 1959-1967 – Cliff Richard
  • 1968-1970 – Tom Jones
  • 1971-1972 – Cliff Richard
  • 1973 – David Bowie
  • 1975 – Paul Rodgers

Best US Male Singer

  • 1955-1956 – Frank Sinatra
  • 1957 – Pat Boone
  • 1958 – Elvis Presley

Outstanding Popular Singer

  • 1955 – Frank Sinatra
  • 1957 – Pat Boone
  • 1958 – Elvis Presley

Best Instrumental Personality

  • 1958 – Eddie Calvert
  • 1959-1960 – Russ Conway
  • 1961 – Bert Weedon

Best Musical Personality

  • 1955 – Bill Haley
  • 1956 – Dickie Valentine
  • 1957-1959 – Elvis Presley
  • 1960 – Duane Eddy
  • 1961-1972 – Elvis Presley

Best British Musical Personality

  • 1956 – Dickie Valentine
  • 1957 – Tommy Steele
  • 1958-1959 – Frankie Vaughan
  • 1960 – Lonnie Donegan
  • 1961 – Adam Faith
  • 1962-1963 – Joe Brown
  • 1964 – Cliff Richard
  • 1965 – John Lennon
  • 1966-1972 – Cliff Richard

Genre-Specific Categories

These are just a selection of the categories that relate to a particular genre of music.

Best Soul / Funk Act

  • 1973, 1975 – Stevie Wonder
  • 1984 – Womack & Womack
  • 1985 – Cameo

Best Reggae Act

  • 1984 – Smiley Culture
  • 1985 – UB40

Best R&B / Blues Act

  • 1964-1965 – The Rolling Stones
  • 1966 – Spencer Davis Group
  • 1967-1968 – The Rolling Stones
  • 1970 – Fleetwood Mac

Best Traditional Jazz Act

  • 1961 – Acker Bilk
  • 1962-1963 – Kenny Ball

Best Group

Finally, we reach the categories for best group – of which there are a few.

Best Group

  • 1954 – Stargazers
  • 1955 – Four Aces
  • 1956 – Stargazers
  • 1957 – The Platters
  • 1958-1962 – Everly Brothers
  • 1963-1965 – The Beatles
  • 1966 – The Beach Boys
  • 1967-1970 – The Beatles
  • 1971 – Creedence Clearwater Revival
  • 1972 – T. Rex
  • 1973 – Yes
  • 1975 – Roxy Music
  • 1976 – Led Zeppelin
  • 1977 – Sex Pistols
  • 1978 – The Clash
  • 1979-1982 – The Jam
  • 1983 – New Order
  • 1984-1987 – The Smiths
  • 1988 – The Wedding Present
  • 1989 – The Stone Roses
  • 1990 – Happy Mondays
  • 1991-1992 – R.E.M.

Best British Group

  • 1955 – Stargazers
  • 1957 – King Brothers
  • 1958-1959 – The Mudlarks
  • 1960 – King Brothers
  • 1961-1962 – The Springfields
  • 1963-1971 – The Beatles
  • 1972 – T. Rex
  • 1973 – Yes

Best British Small Band

  • 1952 – Johnny Dankworth Seven
  • 1954 – Ronnie Scott and His Orchestra
  • 1955-1957 – The Kirchins
  • 1958-1959 – Lonnie Donegan
  • 1960-1963 – The Shadows

Best British Large Band or Orchestra

  • 1952-1961 – Ted Heath and His Music
  • 1962-1963 – Joe Loss

Best British Instrumental Unit

  • 1964-1971 – The Shadows
  • 1972 – Collective Consciousness Society

Best Live Act

  • 1973 – Alice Cooper (World) & Genesis (British)
  • 1975 – Genesis
  • 1982 – The Jam
  • 1985 – The Pogues

That’s it for now – we’ll continue our journey through the NME Awards soon.

NME Poll Winners – The 1980s

Throughout the 1980s, the NME Poll Winners suffered without an annual ceremony where they could drink lots and vomit on the politicians of the day. Overshadowed by the more popular BPI Awards and British Rock & Pop Awards, it’s notable by the late eighties that contemporary pop has been eschewed altogether by NME’s readership.

Oh, and you might enjoy the slightly questionable choices for “human being of the year”…

1980

  • Best Group: The Jam
  • Best New Act: UB40
  • Best Male Singer: Paul Weller
  • Best Guitarist: Paul Weller
  • Best Drummer: Rick Buckler
  • Best Songwriter: Paul Weller
  • Best Bassist: Bruce Foxton
  • Best Keyboardist: Dave Greenfield
  • Best Other Instrumentalist: Saxa
  • Best Single: The Jam, for Going Underground
  • Best Album: The Jam, for Sound Affects
  • Best Dressed Sleeve: The Jam, for Sound Affects
  • Best Disc Jockey: John Peel
  • Best Dressed Person: Adam Ant
  • Haircut of the Year: Eugene Reynolds
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Paul Weller
  • Creep of the Year: Margaret Thatcher
  • Event of the Year: Death of John Lennon
  • TV Programme: Not the Nine O’Clock News
  • Movie of the Year: The Elephant Man

1981

  • Best Group: The Jam
  • Best New Act: Altered Images
  • Most Missed Person: John Lennon
  • Best Songwriter: Paul Weller
  • Best Female Singer: Siouxsie Sioux
  • Best Male Singer: David Bowie
  • Best Single: The Specials, for Ghost Town
  • Best LP: Echo and the Bunnymen, for Heaven Up Here
  • Best Dressed Sleeve: Echo and the Bunnymen, for Heaven Up Here
  • Best Guitarist: Paul Weller
  • Best Bassist: Bruce Foxton
  • Best Drummer: Rick Buckler
  • Best Keyboardist: Dave Greenfield
  • Best TV Programme: Coronation Street
  • Best Radio Show: John Peel
  • Best Film: Gregory’s Girl
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Paul Weller
  • Best Dressed Person: Michael Foot
  • Creep of the Year: Adam Ant*

* The NME website says “Adam Andy” but I suspect this must be a typo – please correct me if you disagree!

1982

  • Best Group: The Jam
  • Best Male Singer: Paul Weller
  • Best Female Singer: Siouxsie Sioux
  • Creep of the Year: Margaret Thatcher
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Paul Weller
  • Best Songwriter: Paul Weller
  • Best Single: The Jam, for Town Called Malice
  • Best Longplayer: The Jam, for The Gift
  • Best Live Act: The Jam
  • Best Dancefloor Favourite: Wham!, for Young Guns (Go for It)
  • Best Dressed Sleeve: Siouxsie and the Banshees – A Kiss in the Dreamhouse
  • Event of the Year: The Jam Split
  • Best Dressed Male: Paul Weller
  • Best Dressed Female: Siouxsie Sioux
  • Best Haircut: Paul Weller
  • Best Electronics: Vince Clarke
  • Best Guitarist: Paul Weller
  • Best Bassist: Bruce Foxton
  • Best Drummer: Rick Buckler
  • Best Miscellaneous Instrument: The Emerald Express, Violin
  • Best Radio Show: John Peel
  • Best Music Video: Madness, for House of Fun
  • Best TV Show: The Young Ones
  • Best Film: E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial

1983

  • Best Group: New Order
  • Best New Act: The Smiths
  • Best Dressed Female: Siouxsie Sioux
  • Female Singer: Siouxsie Sioux
  • Songwriter: Elvis Costello
  • Male Singer: David Bowie
  • Best Dressed Male: David Bowie
  • Best Long Player: Elvis Costello, for Punch the Clock
  • Best Single: New Order, for Blue Monday
  • Best Film: Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence
  • Best Promo Video: Michael Jackson, for Thriller
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Paul Weller
  • Creep of the Year: Margaret Thatcher
  • TV Show: The Tube
  • Best Dressed Sleeve: New Order, for Power, Corruption and Lies
  • Best Radio Programme: John Peel
  • Best Guitarist: The Edge
  • Best Drummer: Budgie
  • Best Miscellaneous Musician: The TKO Horns
  • Best Bassist: Peter Hook
  • Best Keyboardist: Steve Nieve

1984

  • Best Group: The Smiths
  • Best New Act: Bronski Beat
  • Best Reggae Act: Smiley Culture
  • Best Soul Act: Womack & Womack
  • Best TV Show: The Tube
  • Best Radio Show: John Peel
  • Best Single: Frankie Goes to Hollywood, for Relax
  • Best LP: Cocteau Twins, for Treasure
  • Best Dressed Sleeve: Frankie Goes to Hollywood, for Welcome to the Pleasuredome
  • Promo Video: Frankie Goes to Hollywood, for Two Tribes
  • Best Film: Nineteen Eighty-Four
  • Best Male Singer: Bono
  • Best Songwriter: Morrissey / Johnny Marr
  • Best Female Singer: Elizabeth Fraser
  • Best Instrumentalist: Johnny Marr
  • Best Dressed Person: Paul Weller
  • Creep of the Year: Margaret Thatcher
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Arthur Scargill

1985

  • Best Group: The Smiths
  • Best New Act: The Jesus and Mary Chain
  • Best Male Singer: Morrissey
  • Best Female Singer: Elizabeth Fraser
  • Best Songwriter: Morrissey / Johnny Marr
  • Best Single: The Jesus and Mary Chain, for Never Understand
  • LP of the Year: The Smiths, for Meat is Murder
  • Best Soul/Funk Band: Cameo
  • Best Reggae Act: UB40
  • Best Live Act: The Pogues
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Bob Geldof
  • Creep of the Year: Margaret Thatcher
  • Best Dressed: Morrissey
  • Worst Dressed: Bob Geldof
  • Best Haircut: Morrissey
  • Worst Haircut: Feargal Sharkey
  • Biggest Mouth: Bob Geldof
  • Best Film: Letter to Brezhnev
  • Best TV Programme: The Old Grey Whistle Test
  • Best Radio Show: John Peel
  • Best Video: Talking Heads, for Road to Nowhere
  • Best Dressed Sleeve: The Pogues, for Rum, Sodomy and the Lash
  • Best Hype: The Jesus and Mary Chain

1986

  • Best Single: The Smiths, for Panic
  • Best LP: The Smiths, for The Queen is Dead
  • Best Male Singer: Morrissey
  • Best Female Singer: Elizabeth Fraser
  • Best Group: The Smiths
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Morrissey
  • Best Club/Venue: Town & Country Club
  • Best Dance Record: Cameo, for Word Up
  • Threat of the Year: AIDS
  • Sex Symbol: Joanne Whalley
  • Event of the Year: 1986 FIFA World Cup
  • Best Film: Mona Lisa
  • Best TV Show: The Singing Detective
  • Creep of the Year: Margaret Thatcher
  • Best New Music: The Housemartins
  • Best Radio Show: John Peel

1987

  • Best Group: The Smiths
  • Best Single: Prince, for Sign O The Times
  • Best LP: The Smiths, for Strangeways Here We Come
  • Male Singer: Morrissey
  • Best Female Singer: Suzanne Vega
  • Best New Act: The Proclaimers
  • Best Dance Record: M/A/R/R/S, for Pump Up the Volume
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Morrissey
  • Creep of the Year: Margaret Thatcher
  • Bad News of the Year: Another Conservative Victory at the General Election
  • Safe Sex: Morrissey
  • Radio: John Peel
  • Best TV Programme: Brookside
  • Best Film: Angel Heart
  • Event of the Year: Nuclear Agreement

1988

  • Best Band: The Wedding Present
  • Solo Artist: Morrissey
  • Best New Band/Act: The House of Love
  • Best Single: The House of Love, for Destroy the Heart
  • Best LP: R.E.M., for Green
  • Best TV Show: Brookside
  • Ugly Bastard of the Year: Bros (collective award)
  • Object of Desire of the Year: Wendy James
  • Film of the Year: A Fish Called Wanda
  • Favourite NME Cover of 1988: Morrissey
  • Best Night Out: The Wedding Present
  • Radio Show of the Year: John Peel
  • Stimulant of the Year: Acid
  • Event of the Year: Nelson Mandela‘s Birthday Bash
  • Bad News of the Year: US Election Result
  • Most Wonderful Human Being: Morrissey
  • Creep of the Year: Margaret Thatcher

1989

  • Band of the Year: The Stone Roses
  • LP of the Year: The Stone Roses, for The Stone Roses
  • Single of the Year: The Stone Roses, for Fool’s Gold
  • Best New Band/Artist: The Stone Roses
  • Best Solo Artist: Morrissey
  • Best Dance Record: Happy Mondays, for WFL
  • Hype of the Year: Batman
  • Object of Desire: Wendy James
  • Radio Show: John Peel
  • TV Show: Blackadder
  • Film of the Year: Dead Poets’ Society
  • Fashion of the Year: Flares
  • Club/Venue of the Year: The Haçienda
  • Event of the Year (Music): Reading Festival
  • Event of the Year (Real Life): Revolution in Eastern Europe
  • Bastard of the Year: Margaret Thatcher

See also

Monaco – Music for Pleasure

Sha la la la la la la. Yes, What Do You Want from Me? is an extremely good song. Peter Hook is on great form, the lyrics are better than many of New Order‘s and singer and guitarist David Potts was on fine vocal form too.

Music for Pleasure, released twenty years ago this week, was Peter Hook‘s second attempt at a solo project after 1990’s largely forgotten Revenge project. Monaco, though, were pretty successful for a while, and of course What Do You Want from Me? is the single you remember, with its enormous bass guitar part and all the sha la la-ing.

The album followed reasonably quickly after the single though, and third single Shine comes next, still sounding a lot like New Order, or even Electronic during this period. It’s a bit more rocky, and Potts can’t quite reach the high notes, but it’s still a great song.

Getting the singles out of the way right at the start, we then jump to Sweet Lips, which came out just before the album, and was also a pretty sizeable hit. It’s much more dancey than either of the other singles, and it’s another fantastically catchy song. The album version is a slightly extended mix, which works well too.

1997 was, of course, just a couple of years after Oasis had turned up and persuaded everyone to dig out their 1960s record collections, so it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that Monaco wanted some of the action as well. Buzz Gum is a pretty respectable imitation of all the other indie stuff that was going on in the mid-1990s.

It’s tempting to wonder whether loading all the singles at the front of the album was the best idea – it started off so promisingly, but Blue is pretty dreary, although it’s also mercifully short. Then comes Junk, a nine minute dance piece, which actually sounds as dated as the indie tracks now, but it’s pretty good.

Billy Bones is a slightly trippy slow-rock piece, which is pretty pleasant, then Happy Jack is another low-grade indie track, this time with a particularly average vocal as well. Tender is better – if you’ve forgotten the album, this is the one with the catchy “in my mind I live in California” line.

Sedona (which is in Arizona, not California) is the last track, and is the best thing we’ve had on here since the singles at the start. It’s a huge, and epic piece, bobbing along at a fairly leisurely tempo, and with some slightly naff synth reed sounds, but it’s a clever exploration of sounds, and makes for a great instrumental closing piece. After a minute of silence at the end, someone turns up to add “Oi! You can turn it off now!”

Strictly speaking, I could have done that three quarters of an hour ago, but I didn’t. Music for Pleasure is a mixed bag, but when it’s good, it is very good indeed. And it clearly must have had some kind of impact on me – I would never have suspected it when the album came out twenty years ago, but now I do live in California. Thanks, Monaco!

You should still be able to find copies of Music for Pleasure floating around, but I’m not sure I would pay that much for them…

New Order – Get Ready

After eight long years of compilations and oddities, New Order came back in 2001 with Crystal. Reinvigorated by their recent side projects with ElectronicMonaco, and The Other Two (all of whom had managed exactly one very good album since 1993; two had also thrown out a less good one too), now they were back together to show the indie music scene how it was done.

Admittedly, they were a little late – they missed the bulk of the indie explosion by a comfortable margin – but they were just in time to turn up, show anyone else who was hanging around that they were largely recording dirges, and then disappear back into whatever hole it is that New Order hide in whenever they’re not releasing things. Well, except of course that the following year actually brought us the brilliant 24 Hour Party People and Here to Stay, but let’s leave that for that another time.

Get Ready is, though, like most of New Order‘s albums, a bit of a rollercoaster ride. Crystal is great, and accessible to many, and 60 Miles an Hour is a competent second track and second single too. Unlike the first, it was probably never going to find them too many new fans, but it kept plenty of people coming back for more.

However, it really is hard to imagine the collaboration with The Smashing Pumpkins‘s Billy Corgan really making too many people happy – it mainly seems to mean that New Order have gained another guitar line and another slightly questionable singing talent. Neither of which was exactly lacking anyway.

New Order being back together was really more than enough of a novelty, and the four-piece proved their brilliance with such understated works of genius as Vicious Streak, which, while not unexpectedly long, somehow seems as though it’s going to last forever. Primitive Notion is good too – much more of a rock piece than New Order ever used to present their fans with, but let’s just agree to see that as another string to their bow.

Admittedly, by Slow Jam you might find yourself dreaming of the beats of Blue Monday. There’s nothing wrong with this one, or Rock the Shack, the collaboration with The Jesus and Mary Chain‘s Bobby Gillespie, but New Order‘s sound was always so unique, whereas on Get Ready they just seem to be trying to find their feet again by trying to imitate what all the indie acts had been doing for the preceding five or six years. It’s not the most comfortable place for New Order to sit.

Get Ready does feel as though they were trying to practice what they preached – the instruction in the title is less for us, and more for them, as they learnt again what they were meant to sound like. When they get it right, as on Someone Like You, they’re absolutely brilliant, but a lot of this album falls a little short. For now, just enjoy how great they are when all the ingredients are right.

Close Range is good – but far from perfect. There are moments on here when it seems as though they’re just dialling it in. Bernard Sumner‘s lyrics are distinctly average (at the low end of the spectrum, it has been pointed out before that Crystal‘s somewhat confusing wording about buying honey with money could have done with a little more work, and there’s nothing on this whole CD that really grabs you and makes you think he’s pushing himself. Peter Hook‘s bass “hooks” seem a bit lacklustre here too.

So it’s really no major disappointment that Run Wild is the last track on here, closing things off with an unusually religious, Midwest American piece. It’s not great, but neither is it too bad either. Like the entirety of Get Ready, really. After Crystal, pretty much the best thing you can say about it is this: we had New Order back.

You can still find the original release of Get Ready at all major retailers.

Peel Sessions – New Order, 26 January 1981

It will come as little surprise that an “alternative” act as high-profile as New Order appeared on John Peel‘s radio show more than once. But their first appearance, comfortably two months before the release of their debut single Ceremony, is perhaps the most intriguing. Recorded at the end of January 1981, and initially broadcast on February 16th, it shows an early but fairly polished set from the very birth of a legend.

In all honesty, I’m no particular fan of the first New Order album Movement, although that may be because I’ve only got an early CD release with slightly questionable sound quality. But here on their first Peel session, ten months earlier, their musical exploration is truly fascinating.

Truth is my favourite track on the album, and it’s also rather good here, showing them as much more proficient with the drum machine than they would be until Blue Monday appeared nearly three years later. It’s an intriguingly experimental recording, which does remind you a lot of their earlier incarnation, while at the same time sounding fresh and different.

Senses and ICB, as on the album, are less exciting – the first is an instrumental with a few more experimental aspects, but one that seems to go on forever. The latter drags somewhat too, and an unexciting vocal doesn’t help enormously either.

Finally, we get the album’s opener and one of the more promising songs Dreams Never End. The surprise vocal from Peter Hook always startles me, and it’s notable that this is more of a traditional “rock” song. It’s good though, and you can certainly see this fitting well on John Peel‘s seminal radio show back in 1981.

We’ll cover the second session in a future article. You can read more about New Order‘s relationship with John Peel‘s radio show here. This session is available on the CD The Peel Sessions, which is no longer widely available.