BRIT Awards 2021

The 2020 BRIT Awards snuck in just before that pandemic thing, and so it was only a fifteen month wait between awards. Famed as the first indoor music event in the UK in over a year, Jack Whitehall presented the ceremony at the O2 Arena in London on 11 May.

Male Solo Artist

Nominees:

  • AJ Tracey
  • Headie One
  • J Hus
  • Joel Corry
  • Yungblud

Winner: J Hus

Female Solo Artist

Nominees:

  • Arlo Parks
  • Celeste
  • Dua Lipa
  • Jessie Ware
  • Lianne La Havas

Winner: Dua Lipa

British Group

Nominees:

  • Bicep
  • Biffy Clyro
  • Little Mix
  • The 1975
  • Young T & Bugsey

Winner: Little Mix

British Single with Mastercard

Nominees:

  • 220 Kid & GRACEY – Don’t Need Love
  • Aitch & AJ Tracey feat. Tay Keith – Rain
  • Dua Lipa – Physical
  • Harry Styles – Watermelon Sugar
  • Headie One feat. AJ Tracey and Stormzy – Ain’t It Different
  • Joel Corry feat. MNEK – Head & Heart
  • Nathan Dawe feat. KSI – Lighter
  • Regard & RAYE – Secrets
  • S1MBA feat. DTG – Rover
  • Young T & Bugsey feat. Headie One – Don’t Rush

Winner: Harry Styles

Breakthrough Artist

Winner:

  • Arlo Parks
  • Bicep
  • Celeste
  • Joel Corry
  • Young T & Bugsey

Winner: Arlo Parks

International Female Solo Artist

Nominees:

  • Ariana Grande
  • Billie Eilish
  • Cardi B
  • Miley Cyrus
  • Taylor Swift

Winner: Billie Eilish

International Male Solo Artist

Nominees:

  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Burna Boy
  • Childish Gambino
  • Tame Impala
  • The Weeknd

Winner: The Weeknd

International Group

Nominees:

  • BTS
  • Fontaines D.C.
  • Foo Fighters
  • Haim
  • Run The Jewels

Winner: Haim

Global Icon

Winner: Taylor Swift

Mastercard Album

Nominees:

  • Arlo Parks – Collapsed in Sunbeams
  • Celeste – Not Your Muse
  • Dua Lipa – Future Nostalgia
  • J Hus – Big Conspiracy
  • Jessie Ware – What’s Your Pleasure?

Winner: Dua Lipa

BRITs Rising Star

Nominees:

  • Griff
  • Pa Salieu
  • Rina Sawayama

Winner: Griff

Performances included Coldplay, Olivia Rodrigo, Elton John with Years & Years (performing It’s a Sin, which was apparently also supposed to include Pet Shop Boys but they turned out to be unable to join for rights reasons), Pink, and many others.

There was also some rumbling controversy this year due to Sam Smith identifying as non-binary, and so not fitting any of the common “male”, “female”, or “group” categories. It will be interesting to see how this comes to be addressed in future years, as the categories are as old as the ceremony itself.

You can see the official list of winners here.

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BRIT Awards 2021 – Nominations

The 2021 BRITs were delayed by three months, thanks to some kind of global pandemic thingy, but they’re coming soon, presented again by Jack Whitehall. Here’s the full list of nominees for this year’s awards.

Mastercard Album

  • Arlo Parks – Collapsed in Sunbeams
  • Celeste – Not Your Muse
  • Dua Lipa – Future Nostalgia
  • J Hus – Big Conspiracy
  • Jessie Ware – What’s Your Pleasure?

Female Solo Artist

  • Arlo Parks
  • Celeste
  • Dua Lipa
  • Jessie Ware
  • Lianne La Havas

Male Solo Artist

  • AJ Tracey
  • Headie One
  • J Hus
  • Joel Corry
  • Yungblud

British Group

  • Bicep
  • Biffy Clyro
  • Little Mix
  • The 1975
  • Young T & Bugsey

Breakthrough Artist

  • Arlo Parks
  • Bicep
  • Celeste
  • Joel Corry
  • Young T & Bugsey

British Single with Mastercard

  • 220 Kid & GRACEY – Don’t Need Love
  • Aitch & AJ Tracey feat. Tay Keith – Rain
  • Dua Lipa – Physical
  • Harry Styles – Watermelon Sugar
  • Headie One feat. AJ Tracey and Stormzy – Ain’t It Different
  • Joel Corry feat. MNEK – Head & Heart
  • Nathan Dawe feat. KSI – Lighter
  • Regard & RAYE – Secrets
  • S1MBA feat. DTG – Rover
  • Young T & Bugsey feat. Headie One – Don’t Rush

International Female Solo Artist

  • Ariana Grande
  • Billie Eilish
  • Cardi B
  • Miley Cyrus
  • Taylor Swift

International Male Solo Artist

  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Burna Boy
  • Childish Gambino
  • Tame Impala
  • The Weeknd

International Group

  • BTS
  • Fontaines D.C.
  • Foo Fighters
  • HAIM
  • Run The Jewels

BRITs Rising Star

  • Griff
  • Pa Salieu
  • Rina Sawayama

The winner in this category is already confirmed to be Griff.

Rule changes this year mean that for the first time, you no longer need to have released an album in the preceding year in order to be nominated. The downside to this is a lot of Joel Corry, whose face (which looked as though it had to be either very airbrushed or the result of a lot of cosmetic surgery) turned up on a lot of social media advertising last year, but whose music I think I have yet to hear.

You can see the full list of nominees here.

Finally, it’s worth pausing for a moment to mention diversity (or the lack thereof) at the BRIT Awards. As you may or may not have noticed, this blog’s coverage of recent ceremonies has been limited in the extreme, and so the drama of the actual awards has entirely passed me by. That means I missed The 1975‘s raising of a very valid point about the male bias of 2019‘s ceremony, which, to their credit, the BRIT Awards’ twitter account made no attempt to whitewash. Even way back in 2016, I missed the criticism of the nominees and winners being skewed towards white artists. I sincerely apologise for missing both of these – however limited the coverage is on this blog, I should have known about them and have given them coverage here. The Guardian, at least, makes the point that this year’s event looks a little more promising in terms of diversity, so hopefully the tide is turning now.

NME Awards 2020

For reasons that I don’t entirely remember, NME decided to take the year off from their awards ceremony in 2019, so returned on 12 February 2020, just weeks before the lockdown started in the UK. Due to other commitments, we didn’t manage to cover it here at the time, so here we are, a year late! The ceremony was held at the O2 Academy Brixton, a year ago last week.

Godlike Genius

Winner: Emily Eavis

Best British Album

Nominees:

  • FKA twigs – Magdalene
  • Foals – Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost, Pt. 1
  • Little Simz – GREY Area
  • Michael Kiwanuka – Kiwanuka
  • Slowthai – Nothing Great About Britain

Winner: Little Simz

Best Album in the World

Nominees:

  • Billie Eilish – When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?
  • FKA twigs Magdalene
  • Foals – Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost, Pt. 1
  • Lana del Rey – Norman Fucking Rockwell
  • Little Simz – GREY Area
  • Michael Kiwanuka – Kiwanuka
  • Slipknot – We Are Not Your Kind
  • Slowthai – Nothing Great About Britain
  • Stella Donnelly – Beware of the Dogs
  • Tyler, the Creator – IGOR

Winner: Lana del Rey

Best British Song

Nominees:

  • AJ Tracey – Ladbroke Grove
  • Dua Lipa – Don’t Start Now
  • Georgia – About Work the Dancefloor
  • Mura Masa feat. Slowthai – Deal Wiv It
  • The 1975 – People

Winner: AJ Tracey

Best Song in the World

Nominees:

  • AJ Tracey – Ladbroke Grove
  • Billie Eilish – Bad Guy
  • Clairo – Bags
  • Dua Lipa – Don’t Start Now
  • Georgia – About Work the Dancefloor
  • Lil Nas X – Old Town Road (Remix)
  • Lizzo – Juice
  • Mura Masa feat. Slowthai – Deal Wiv It
  • Post Malone – Circles
  • The 1975 – People

Winner: Billie Eilish

Best British Solo Act

Nominees:

  • AJ Tracey
  • Charli XCX
  • FKA twigs
  • Slowthai
  • Yungblud

Winner: FKA twigs

Best Solo Act in the World

Nominees:

  • AJ Tracey
  • Beck
  • Billie Eilish
  • Charli XCX
  • FKA twigs
  • Lana del Rey
  • Lizzo
  • Slowthai
  • Taylor Swift
  • Yungblud

Winner: Taylor Swift

Best British Band: Supported by Pizza Express

Nominees:

  • Bring Me The Horizon
  • IDLES
  • Krept & Konan
  • The 1975
  • The Big Moon

Winner: The 1975

Best Band in the World

Nominees:

  • Bring Me the Horizon
  • Brockhampton
  • BTS
  • HAIM
  • IDLES
  • Krept & Konan
  • Slipknot
  • Tame Impala
  • The 1975
  • The Big Moon

Winner: Slipknot

Best New British Act: Supported by Nordoff Robbins

Nominees:

  • Celeste
  • D-Block Europe
  • Easy Life
  • Jade Bird
  • Sam Fender

Winner: Easy Life

Best New Act in the World

Nominees:

  • Celeste
  • Clairo
  • D-Block Europe
  • DaBaby
  • Dominic Fike
  • Easy Life
  • Fontaines DC
  • Girl In Red
  • Jade Bird
  • Sam Fender

Winner: Clairo

Best Live Act: Supported by Copper Dog Whiskey

Nominees:

  • Amyl + The Sniffers
  • Foals
  • Iggy Pop
  • Lizzo
  • Slowthai

Winner: Foals

Best Collaboration

Nominees:

  • BTS + Halsey
  • Charli XCX + Christine and the Queens
  • Megan Thee Stallion + DaBaby
  • Slowthai + Mura Masa
  • Yungblud + Dan Reynolds

Winner: Slowthai + Mura Masa

Best Music Video

Nominees:

  • Brockhampton – I Been Born Again
  • Easy Life – Nice Guys
  • Normani – Motivation
  • Stormzy – Vossi Bop
  • Yungblud – Original Me

Winner: Yungblud

Best British Festival

Nominees:

  • All Points East
  • Glastonbury
  • Parklife
  • Reading & Leeds
  • Wireless

Winner: Glastonbury

Best Small Festival: Supported by Cano Water

Nominees:

  • Bluedot
  • End of the Road
  • Iceland Airwaves
  • Kendal Calling
  • Øya

Winner: End of the Road

Best Festival in the World

Nominees:

  • All Points East
  • Coachella
  • Fuji Rock
  • Glastonbury
  • Mad Cool
  • Parklife
  • Reading & Leeds
  • Rock In Rio
  • Sziget
  • Wireless

Winner: Glastonbury

Best Festival Headliner

Nominees:

  • Cardi B
  • Lana Del Rey
  • Stormzy
  • The 1975
  • The Cure

Winner: The Cure

Best Film

Nominees:

  • Blue Story
  • Hustlers
  • Joker
  • Midsommar
  • Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Winner: Blue Story

Best Film Actor

Nominees:

  • Florence Pugh
  • Joaquin Phoenix
  • Lupita Nyong’o
  • Micheal Ward
  • Taron Egerton

Winner: Taron Egerton

Best TV Show: Supported by 19 Crimes

Nominees:

  • The End of the Fucking World
  • Fleabag
  • Peaky Blinders
  • Stranger Things
  • Top Boy

Winner: Peaky Blinders

Best TV Actor

Nominees:

  • Asa Butterfield
  • Jessica Barden
  • Jodie Comer
  • Kano
  • Zendaya

Winner: Jessica Barden

Best Music Film

Nominees:

  • Beyoncé – Homecoming
  • BTS – Bring the Soul
  • Liam Gallagher – As It Was
  • Michael Hutchence – Mystify
  • Rocketman

Winner: Liam Gallagher

Best Book

Billed as ‘Best Book’ by NME themselves, the name was corrected by some online to ‘Best Music Book’. Nominees:

  • Brett Anderson – Afternoons with the Blinds Drawn
  • Debbie Harry – Face It: A Memoir
  • Elton John – Me
  • Prince – The Beautiful Ones
  • Tegan & Sara – High School

Winner: Debbie Harry

Best Reissue

Nominees:

  • Aretha Franklin – Amazing Grace
  • Muse – Origin of Muse
  • Prince – 1999
  • R.E.M. – Monster 25
  • The Beatles – Abbey Road

Winner: Muse

Best Podcast: Supported by Dax

Nominees:

  • Have You Heard George’s Podcast?
  • My Dad Wrote A Porno
  • Sex Power Money
  • Stay Free: The Story of The Clash
  • The Missing Cryptoqueen

Winner: Have You Heard George’s Podcast?

Best Game

Nominees:

  • Death Stranding
  • Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
  • The Outer Worlds

Winner: Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Songwriter of the Decade

Winner: Robyn

Band of the Decade

Winner: The 1975

Under the Radar Award

Winner: Beabadoobee

NME Icon

Winner: Courtney Love

NME Awards – 2015-2017

Finally, by the current decade, NME seemed to have regained their taste. Several decades after being obsessed with guitars and the lower reaches of the charts, they finally even decided to associate themselves with acts such as Pet Shop Boys. Let’s complete our journey through the history of their awards, with the last few years.

NME Awards 2015

  • Godlike Genius Award: Suede
  • Best British Band: Kasabian. Also nominated: Alt-J, Arctic Monkeys, Chvrches, Royal Blood, The Libertines
  • Best Album: Kasabian, for 48:13
  • Also nominated: Jamie T, for Carry On The Grudge, La Roux, for Trouble In Paradise, Royal Blood, for Royal Blood, Run The Jewels, for Run The Jewels 2, St Vincent, for St Vincent
  • Best International Band: Foo Fighters. Also nominated: Arcade Fire, Haim, Interpol, Queens Of The Stone Age, Tame Impala
  • Best Live Band: Royal Blood. Also nominated: Arctic Monkeys, Fat White Family, Foo Fighters, Kasabian, The Libertines
  • Best New Band: Royal Blood. Also nominated: Circa Waves, FKA Twigs, Jungle, Slaves, Superfood
  • Best Solo Artist: Jake Bugg. Also nominated: Jack White, Jamie T, La Roux, Lana Del Rey, St Vincent
  • Best Festival: Glastonbury. Also nominated: Bestival, Isle Of Wight Festival, Latitude, Reading & Leeds, T In The Park
  • Best Track: Jamie T, for Zombie. Also nominated: Future Islands, for Seasons (Waiting On You), Jungle, for Busy Earnin, Kasabian, for Eez-Eh, Noel Gallagher, for In The Heat Of The Moment, Royal Blood, for Little Monster
  • Best Video: Jamie T, for Zombie. Also nominated: Fat White Family, for Touch The Leather, FKA Twigs, for Two Weeks, Jungle, for Busy Earnin’, Peace, for Lost On Me, Royal Blood, for Figure It Out
  • Best Music Film: Pulp, for A Film About Life, Death and Supermarkets. Also nominated: 20,000 Days On Earth, Finding Fela, Kasabian, for Summer Solstice, Supermensch: The Legend Of Shep Gordon, The Possibilities Are Endless
  • Best Film: Northern Soul. Also nominated: Boyhood, Frank, Get On Up, God Help The Girl, The Inbetweeners 2
  • Best TV Show: Game of Thrones. Also nominated: Girls, Foo Fighters, for Sonic Highways, Peaky Blinders, Sherlock, True Detective
  • Best Dancefloor Filler: Iggy Azalea feat. Charli XCX, for Fancy. Also nominated: Jamie T, for Zombie, Kasabian, for Eez-Eh, Mark Ronson & Bruno Mars, for Uptown Funk, Metronomy, for Love Letters, SBTRKT feat. Ezra Koenig, for New Dorp. New York
  • Worst Band: 5 Seconds of Summer. Also nominated: , Bastille, Blink 182, One Direction, The 1975, U2
  • Villain of the Year: Nigel Farage. Also nominated: Bono, David Cameron, Harry Styles, Russell Brand, Taylor Swift
  • Hero of the Year: Alex Turner. Also nominated: Dave Grohl, Kate Bush, Noel Gallagher, Russell Brand, Taylor Swift
  • Music Moment of the Year: Jamie T‘s comeback. Also nominated: Alex Turner’s Brit Awards speech, Kasabian headline Glastonbury, Kate Bush returns, The Libertines reunite, Nirvana reunite at The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame
  • Best Fan Community: Muse. Also nominated: Jamie T, Kasabian, La Roux, Peace, Royal Blood
  • Small Festival of the Year: Liverpool Psych Fest. Also nominated: End Of The Road, Festival No. 6, Field Day, The Great Escape, Tramlines
  • Book of the Year: Viv Albertine, for Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys
  • Also nominated: Bernard Sumner, for Chapter And Verse, Ian Curtis, Deborah Curtis and Jon Savage, for So This Is Permanence, Jesse Frohman, for Kurt Cobain: The Last Session, John Lydon, for Anger Is An Energy: My Life Uncensored, Steve Hanley, for The Big Midweek: Life Inside The Fall
  • Reissue of the Year: Manic Street Preachers, for The Holy Bible. Also nominated: Led Zeppelin, for Led Zeppelin II, Oasis, for Definitely Maybe, Pixies, for Doolittle, Public Enemy, for It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back, Smashing Pumpkins, for Adore
  • Best Band Social Media: Liam Gallagher‘s Twitter. Also nominated: Questlove’s Twitter, Alana Haim’s Twitter, Albert Hammond Jr’s Twitter, Fat White Family’s Facebook, Slaves’ Facebook

NME Awards 2016

  • Godlike Genius Award: Coldplay
  • Best British Band: The Maccabees. Also nominated: The Libertines, Foals, Wolf Alice, The 1975, Catfish and the Bottlemen
  • Best International Band: Run the Jewels. Also nominated: Tame Impala, Foo Fighters, The Strokes, The Killers, Alabama Shakes
  • Best New Artist: Rat Boy. Also nominated: Hinds, Halsey, Yak, Låpsley, Formation
  • Best British Solo Artist: Charli XCX. Also nominated: Adele, Noel Gallagher, Ed Sheeran, Florence Welch, Skepta
  • Best International Solo Artist: Taylor Swift. Also nominated: Kendrick Lamar, Lana Del Rey, Courtney Barnett, Kanye West, Grimes
  • Best Live Band: Wolf Alice. Also nominated: The Maccabees, The Libertines, Foals, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Royal Blood
  • Best Album: Foals, for What Went Down. Also nominated: Wolf Alice, for My Love Is Cool, The Maccabees, for Marks to Prove it, Kendrick Lamar, for To Pimp a Butterfly, Tame Impala, for Currents, Grimes, for Art Angels
  • Best Track: Wolf Alice, for Giant Peach. Also nominated: Coldplay, for Adventure of a Lifetime, The Libertines, for Gunga Din, The Weeknd, for I Can’t Feel My Face, Skepta, for Shut Down, Foals, for What Went Down
  • Best TV Show: This is England ’90. Also nominated: The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, American Horror Story, Peep Show, Gogglebox
  • Best Film: Beasts of No Nation. Also nominated: Ex Machina, Spectre, Mad Max: Fury Road, Whiplash, Kill Your Friends
  • Best Music Film: Blur, for New World Towers. Also nominated: Amy, Montage of Heck, Straight Outta Compton, What Happened, Miss Simone, The Reflektor Tapes
  • Best Music Video: Slaves, for Cheer Up London. Also nominated: Rihanna, for Bitch Better Have My Money, The Libertines, for Heart Of The Matter, Wolf Alice, for You’re a Germ, Blur, for Ong Ong, Tame Impala, for The Less I Know The Better
  • Best Actor: Idris Elba. Also nominated: Tom Hardy, Eddie Redmayne, Nicholas Hoult, Stephen Graham, Daniel Radcliffe
  • Best Actress: Vicky McClure. Also nominated: Jennifer Lawrence, Emilia Clarke, Gemma Chan, Amy Schumer, Saoirse Ronan
  • Best Reissue: David Bowie, for Five Years (1969–1973). Also nominated: A Tribe Called Quest, for People’s Instinctive Travels And the Paths Of Rhythm, The Velvet Underground, for Loaded, Rolling Stones, for Sticky Fingers, Tori Amos, for Under The Pink, Faith No More, for Angel Dust
  • Best Book: Patti Smith, for M Train. Also nominated: Grace Jones, for I’ll Never Write My MemoirsElvis Costello, for Unfaithful Music & Disappearing InkCarrie Brownstein, for Hunger Makes Me A Modern GirlProfessor Green, for LuckyTom Jones, for Over The Top And Back
  • Best Festival: Glastonbury. Also nominated: Reading & Leeds, V Festival, T in the Park, Bestival, Isle of Wight
  • Best Small Festival: End of the Road. Also nominated: Sŵn, Festival No. 6, Green Man, Liverpool Sound City, Kendall Calling
  • Music Moment of the Year: The Libertines‘ secret Glastonbury set. Also nominated: The return of AdeleDave Grohl breaks leg and carries on, Florence + The Machine headlines Glastonbury, Kanye at The Brits, One Direction ‘split’
  • Best Fan Community: The Libertines. Also nominated: Hurts, Muse, Catfish and the Bottleman, The 1975, Wolf Alice
  • Worst Band: 5 Seconds of Summer. Also nominated: One Direction, Little Mix, Sleaford Mods, U2, Nickelback
  • Villain of the Year: Donald Trump. Also nominated: David Cameron, Chris Moyles, Kanye West, George Osbourne, Simon Cowell
  • Hero of the Year: Dave Grohl. Also nominated: Adele, Jeremy Corbyn, Florence Welch, Kanye West, Taylor Swift
  • Vlogger of the Year: KSI. Also nominated: Vikkstar123, Charlie McDonnell, Joe Weller, Danisnotonfire, Savannah Brown

NME Awards 2017

  • Godlike Genius Award: Pet Shop Boys
  • Best British Band: Biffy Clyro. Also nominated: Wolf Alice, The 1975, Bastille, Years & Years, The Last Shadow Puppets
  • Best International Band: Metallica. Also nominated: Tame Impala, Kings Of Leon, Green Day, A Tribe Called Quest, Tegan and Sara
  • Best New Artist: Dua Lipa. Also nominated: Blossoms, Zara Larsson, Sunflower Bean, Christine and The Queens, Anderson .Paak
  • Best British Female Artist: M.I.A.. Also nominated: Dua Lipa, Adele, Charli XCX, Kate Tempest, PJ Harvey
  • Best British Male Artist: Skepta. Also nominated: Zayn Malik, Kano, Jamie T, Michael Kiwanuka, Richard Ashcroft
  • Best International Female Artist: Christine and the Queens. Also nominated: Sia, Lady Gaga, Beyoncé, Solange, Tove Lo
  • Best International Male Artist: Frank Ocean. Also nominated: Kanye West, Drake, The Weeknd, Kendrick Lamar, Chance The Rapper
  • Best Festival Headliner: Adele. Also nominated: Coldplay, Radiohead, Biffy Clyro, Foals, The Stone Roses
  • Best Live Band: The 1975. Also nominated: Bastille, Slaves, Bring Me The Horizon, Christine And The Queens, Wolf Alice
  • Best Album: Bastille, for Wild World. Also nominated: Kanye West, for The Life Of Pablo, Skepta, for Konnichiwa, The 1975, for I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It, Radiohead, for A Moon Shaped Pool, Beyoncé, for Lemonade
  • Best Track: Christine and the Queens, for Tilted. Also nominated: Tove Lo, for Cool Girl, Charli XCX, for After The Afterparty, Skepta, for Man, Bastille, for Good Grief, The 1975, for Somebody Else
  • Best TV Show: Fleabag. Also nominated: Stranger Things, Game Of Thrones, Black Mirror, Humans, People Just Do Nothing
  • Best Film: My Scientology Movie. Also nominated: DeadpoolCaptain America: Civil War, Suicide Squad, Everybody Wants Some!!, Hunt For The Wilderpeople
  • Best Music Film: Oasis, for Supersonic, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, for One More Time With Feeling, Sing Street, Gimme Danger, The Rolling Stones, for Havana Moon, The Beatles, for Eight Days A Week – The Touring Years
  • Best Music Video: Slaves, for Consume or Be Consumed. Also nominated: Kanye West, for Famous, Beyoncé, for Formation, Radiohead, for Burn The Witch, Rat Boy, for Get Over It, Wolf Alice, for Lisbon
  • Best Reissue: Oasis, for Be Here Now. Also nominated: R.E.M., for Out Of Time, Pink Floyd, for Meddle, Michael Jackson, for Off The Wall, DJ Shadow, for Endtroducing, Blur, for Leisure
  • Best Book: Johnny Marr, for Set the Boy Free
  • Best Festival: Glastonbury. Also nominated: Reading & Leeds, Download, Isle Of Wight, Primavera, V Festival
  • Best Small Festival: End of the Road. Also nominated: Y Not, Green Man, Festival No. 6, Kendall Calling, Slam Dunk
  • Music Moment of the Year: Coldplay‘s Viola Beach tribute at Glastonbury. Also nominated: Bring Me The Horizon invade Coldplay’s table at NME Awards 2016, Beyoncé drops Lemonade, Skepta wins Mercury Prize, Pete Doherty plays The Bataclan, The Stone Roses’ first new music in 20 years
  • Worst Band: 5 Seconds of Summer. Also nominated: The Chainsmokers, Clean Bandit, Honey G, Nickelback, Twenty One Pilots
  • Villain of the Year: Nigel Farage. Also nominated: Donald Trump, David Cameron, Boris Johnson, Martin Shkreli, Katie Hopkins
  • Hero of the Year: Beyoncé. Also nominated: David Bowie, Adele, Millie Bobby Brown, Gary Lineker, Liam Gallagher
  • Outstanding Contribution to Music: Wiley

See also

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

The BRIT Awards 2016

Quite rightly, you were very excited about the BRIT Awards this year, and you flocked in your hundreds to read my latest selection of The Best of the BRIT Awards. What I wasn’t able to do, mainly due to being on holiday, was list the winners for you. So here goes…

British Male Solo Artist

Nominees:

  • Aphex Twin
  • James Bay
  • Calvin Harris
  • Mark Ronson
  • Jamie xx

Winner: James Bay

British Female Solo Artist

Nominees:

  • Adele
  • Florence + The Machine
  • Jess Glynne
  • Laura Marling
  • Amy Winehouse

Winner: Adele

British Group

  • Blur
  • Coldplay
  • Foals
  • One Direction
  • Years & Years

Winner: Coldplay

British Breakthrough Act

  • James Bay
  • Catfish and the Bottlemen
  • Jess Glynne
  • Wolf Alice
  • Years & Years

Winner: Catfish and the Bottlemen

British Producer of the Year

  • Charlie Andrew
  • Mike Crossey
  • Tom Dalgety
  • Mark Ronson

Winner: Charlie Andrew

British Single

  • Adele – Hello
  • James Bay – Hold Back the River
  • Philip George – Wish You Were Mine
  • Jess Glynne – Hold My Hand
  • Ellie Goulding – Love Me Like You Do
  • Little Mix – Black Magic
  • Calvin Harris & Disciples – How Deep is Your Love
  • Olly Murs feat. Demi Lovato – Up
  • Ed Sheeran & Rudimental – Bloodstream
  • Years & Years – King

Winner: Adele

Mastercard British Album of the Year

  • Adele – 25
  • James Bay – Chaos and the Calm
  • Coldplay – A Head Full of Dreams
  • Florence + The Machine – How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
  • Jamie xx – In Colour

Winner: Adele

British Artist Video

  • Adele – Hello
  • Ellie Goulding – Love Me Like You Do
  • Calvin Harris & Disciples – How Deep is Your Love
  • Jessie J – Flashlight
  • Little Mix – Black Magic
  • Naughty Boy feat. Beyoncé & Arrow Benjamin – Runnin’ (Lose it All)
  • One Direction – Drag Me Down
  • Ed Sheeran – Photograph
  • Sam Smith – Writing’s on the Wall
  • Years & Years – King

Winner: One Direction

International Male Solo Artist

  • Justin Bieber
  • Drake
  • Kendrick Lamar
  • Father John Misty
  • The Weeknd

Winner: Justin Bieber

International Female Solo Artist

  • Courtney Barnett
  • Björk
  • Ariana Grande
  • Lana del Rey
  • Meghan Trainor

Winner: Björk. Again.

International Group

  • Alabama Shakes
  • Eagles of Death Metal
  • Major Lazer
  • Tame Impala
  • U2

Winner: Tame Impala. I bet U2 were furious – they always win this award.

Critics’ Choice

  • Izzy Bizu
  • Frances
  • Jack Garratt

Winner: Jack Garratt

Global Success

A special made-up award for Adele, because she was robbed in the International Male Solo Artist category and was so upset.

Well, that’s it for another year. See you next January for the latest nominees in the ADELE Awards.

The BRIT Awards 2016 – Nominations

On the 24th of February this year, we’ll find out who has won a BRIT Award this year. Or more likely, who has won five, as that tends to be the way it goes. The nominations are spectacularly dull this year, as you’ll see below if you can bring yourself to keep reading – the only truly interesting thing is that they have changed some of the names this year…

British Artist Video

  • Adele – Hello
  • Ellie Goulding – Love Me Like You Do
  • Calvin Harris & Disciples – How Deep is Your Love
  • Jessie J – Flashlight
  • Little Mix – Black Magic
  • Naughty Boy feat. Beyonce & Arrow Benjamin – Runnin’ (Lose it All)
  • One Direction – Drag Me Down
  • Ed Sheeran – Photograph
  • Sam Smith – Writing’s on the Wall
  • Years & Years – King

British Breakthrough Act

  • James Bay
  • Catfish and the Bottlemen
  • Jess Glynne
  • Wolf Alice
  • Years & Years

That’s the same James Bay who won the Critics’ Choice last year (beating Years & Years), both of whom did pretty well on the charts in 2015, after all.

British Male Solo Artist

  • Aphex Twin
  • James Bay
  • Calvin Harris
  • Mark Ronson
  • Jamie xx

British Female Solo Artist

  • Adele
  • Florence + The Machine
  • Jess Glynne
  • Laura Marling
  • Amy Winehouse

British Group

  • Blur
  • Coldplay
  • Foals
  • One Direction
  • Years & Years

British Producer of the Year

  • Charlie Andrew
  • Mike Crossey
  • Tom Dalgety
  • Mark Ronson

British Single

  • Adele – Hello
  • James Bay – Hold Back the River
  • Philip George – Wish You Were Mine
  • Jess Glynne – Hold My Hand
  • Ellie Goulding – Love Me Like You Do
  • Little Mix – Black Magic
  • Calvin Harris & Disciples – How Deep is Your Love
  • Olly Murs feat. Demi Lovato – Up
  • Ed Sheeran & Rudimental – Bloodstream
  • Years & Years – King

Mastercard British Album of the Year

  • Adele – 25
  • James Bay – Chaos and the Calm
  • Coldplay – A Head Full of Dreams
  • Florence + The Machine – How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
  • Jamie xx – In Colour

International Male Solo Artist

  • Justin Bieber
  • Drake
  • Kendrick Lamar
  • Father John Misty
  • The Weeknd

International Female Solo Artist

  • Courtney Barnett
  • Björk
  • Ariana Grande
  • Lana del Rey
  • Meghan Trainor

Björk, the only non-British female who anybody cares about (seemingly) receives her sixty-third nomination in this category.

International Group

  • Alabama Shakes
  • Eagles of Death Metal
  • Major Lazer
  • Tame Impala
  • U2

Oh look, U2 rack up their six thousandth nomination in this category. Because so few other foreign groups are popular in the UK, apparently. It’s a shame R.E.M. haven’t been up to much recently.

Critics’ Choice

  • Izzy Bizu
  • Frances
  • Jack Garratt

The winner of which will be Jack Garratt.

Anyway, good luck to Aphex Twin, who is inexplicably nominated for just the third time ever. Other than that, if you care about any of those nominees, you can vote for some of them at the BRIT Awards website.

Laneway Festival 2013, Singapore

A nice surprise just a couple of weeks after arriving in South-East Asia was the arrival of the Laneway Festival last weekend in Singapore. Since practically everybody I asked seemed to be going along, and since the lineup was pretty strong, it seemed rude not to join them. The audience was largely non-Singaporean and largely the kind of people who are a bit too cool for pop, but it made for a great day out in the heat of the almost equatorial January sun.

Frustratingly the slightly shambolic queue for ticket collection left me unable to catch most of the wonderful Kings of Convenience, although the strength of their closer I’d Rather Dance with You was still notable compared to some of the bands who would follow. Another definite highlight was seeing Erlend Øye turn up at the end of the night dancing like a maniac to Gotye, but I’d really have liked to be able to say more about how good their performance was.

Minnesota’s Polica followed with an excellent set of tracks which I’m only unable to recommend since I’d never heard any of them before. Their debut album is out already and definitely seemed worth checking out, with shades of Portishead or Goldfrapp.

The slightly strange order and selection of the lineup reared its ugly head very early on as Cloud Nothings turned up and were absolutely and inconceivably dreadful. The punk / metal band screamed their way through an awful 45 minutes or so, although it’s difficult to know whether they could actually tell, given how poor their drummer seems to be at keeping time.

This seemed a good time to go and investigate what else the festival had to offer, but sadly the merchandise stall was a pretty paltry offering, and the drinks were pricey. Most disappointing was the decision to only stock Fiji water at S$5 for a tiny bottle, complete with a rather insulting message on the label about how sustainable the water was. Because of course shipping tiny bottles of water seven hours across the ocean and selling them at exorbitant prices is much better for the environment than providing, say for argument, a tap.

Fortunately Divine Fits turned up to prevent the mid-afternoon heat from making things any worse. Pleasant enough, the three-piece indie supergroup (apparently, anyway – nobody I asked seemed to have heard of any of them) worked their way through the set before passing the baton over to the much better Of Monsters and Men. Typically Icelandic (I.e. slightly bonkers) and oddly named, they were a wonderful antidote to the sun and some of the dross and dullness which had preceded them.

Japandroids, on the other hand, were a bit of a disappointment. Someone asked me beforehand whether I thought they might sing in Japanese, but sadly they turned out to be neither Japanese nor as electro as their name appeared to suggest. So another set of dull “alternative rock” followed.

The day was growing late and it had already struck most people that the set order was odd in the extreme. Removing Cloud Nothings would have been a good start, but even the bands who were there should really have been reshuffled into a more sensible order. Kings of Convenience may have seemed a nice chilled out opener, but as the most accomplished act on the bill, they really should have had higher billing, and the headline act was, as we shall see, perhaps not the best choice.

The act who followed was a pleasant surprise. Nicholas Jaar turns out to be an excellent chillout dance act with some excellent moments in his set, although sadly by this stage the sunburn and the hours spent out in the sun were starting to get to me, so I ended up sleeping through a good chunk of Kimbra‘s set. What I did see was unfortunately pretty dull. Having turned up as Cinderella, she proceeded to play tracks that largely sounded like Gwen Stefani but rockier, and sadly that’s about all there was to say.

As the sun went down behind Marina Bay Sands, Real Estate turned up with a set that was generally strong but fairly forgettable. British media favourites Alt-J followed, good and consistently interesting, but also a little underwhelming. Having walked off after a couple of minutes due to sound problems, they finally returned to finish their set, but I wonder if perhaps the audience needed something a little stronger at this point.

Fortunately, we got it. The big surprise for me was Yeasayer, whom I think I’d managed not to come across previously, and who were truly exceptional. Catchy experimental hit followed hit, and you’ll be either pleased or disappointed to hear that I’ll definitely be keeping an eye on them from the safety of this blog in the future.

Bat for Lashes was up next, and followed in style with another excellent set, although much of the audience showed their colour by remaining seated for her and then crowding en masse to the stage for the subsequent act Tame Impala.

As an act who had clearly listened to rather more Status Quo in their time than is really healthy, they were, for the most part, fairly dull, but they clearly knew what they were doing for all of that. Feels Like We Only Go Backwards was a particular highlight.

Whether because of the late night shutdown of the city’s Metro system or because people thought they were a bit too cool for the decidedly mainstream headliner who followed, it was really disappointing to see large parts of the crowd exiting at this point, leaving Gotye with slightly post-apocalyptic fields of litter for much of his audience. Perhaps choosing a headliner who had more than one hit to his name outside of Belgium and Australia might have helped.

But Gotye was, of course, excellent. Rippling with humour, great videos, a plethora of different instruments, and a huge array of great songs, it was never going to be anything else. And having long since learnt the lesson of getting his tracks in the right order, Somebody That I Used to Know was among the last. All told, his set was definitely the best of the lot, and he was entirely justified as the headliner – it’s just a shame that the crowd didn’t agree.

To my amusement, what followed was an excellent piece of organised chaos, as the crowds surged out of the site to find that all the public transport had shut down. The entire shopping centre at the Marina was suddenly filled with slightly lost music fans entering from all directions, and none of them entirely sure where they were going. Alongside them, we pushed out into the streets of Singapore and gradually dispersed into the night.

All told, Laneway was an excellent little one-day festival. It was a long day, and a hot one, with generally a good variety of bands, even if they were in an odd order. The decision to charge such high prices for drinks in such a dangerously sunny environment was a shame, but so was the rather unnecessary confiscation of umbrellas at the entrance. But those are quibbles which can easily be fixed. The music was the main thing, and I’m happy to say I discovered some great bands there, even if I was characteristically late to the party with a couple of them…

After Singapore St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival was already in Auckland on Monday, and continues around Australia over the next couple of weeks, visiting Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne this weekend, and then Adelaide and Perth the following week.