Rowdy, chaotic and ever unpredictable, the Bandlab NME Awards is always the most rock’n’roll awards ceremony in video games, but returning to the O2 Academy Brixton after taking a pandemic-enforced hiatus last year, it also feels special to be back together again. After a rocky period for the music that encounter live music venues bolted slam, nightclubs put on pause, and craftsmen, crews, and the entire manufacture jumped into a two-year long period of immense uncertainty, the place of music’s finest pouring into the building feels like a welcome return.
Whether it’s the batch of Chvrches’ Lauren Mayberry belting along to Sam Fender’s opening execution of’ Seventeen Going Under’, Aisling Bea threatening to enjoy a light of anger with her begrudged NME award, or draw lore Bimini bursting onto place in glam attire to shriek “Fuck the Tories”( “so sexy you spawn me wanna oust the Government, ” they supplemented elsewhere) god, it feels specially immense to be back after some time away.
It’s something that artists paid testament to time and time again throughout the night. Early on, Liam Gallagher dedicated his Music Moment of the Year gifted to NHS key laborers, sending a message to guest presenter and punk icon Brix Smith since he was sick. With Music Venues Trust- who worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to keep independent venues afloat- in the house tonight as philanthropy partners, masters always pay tribute to how tough the last two years have proven. “The world is a massive fire at the moment, ” is how CHVRCHES placed it, compiling their award, “so it’s nice to just think about tunes.”
The Cure frontman Robert Smith, meanwhile, shares his support for the people of Ukraine; performing alongside Chvrches with the country’s flag bind around his guitar. While gifting the improbably talented Little Simz with her staggeringly deserved award for Best Solo Act From The UK, London’s Mayor Sadiq Khan takes a moment to celebrate the return of live music, while putting forward a call to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to step up.
Our legions Daisy May Cooper and Lady Leshurr
Summing things up, Little Simz herself likewise had an important message to leave the room with. “There’s a lot going on in the world right now, ” she said. “And I is actually precisely are waiting for us to desire on each other, to be there for each other, to support each other, and do the most wonderful that we are able to, because so many people don’t have that right now”.
So, yes, while the liquor might be flowing and the pizza might be getting gradually chilly, for countless craftsmen tonight is also a scaffold to draw attention to much, much more.
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