It’s that time of year again where the public faun over the faceless and talentless “pop” musicians for another year and increase the bank balances of the people who actually wrote the stuff. And those of us with a shred of musical taste watch the whole event in a car crash kind of way.
I used to watch the Brits as a kid just hoping that someone interesting would win, or someone I had a connection with. In the 36 years that the awards have been going heavy metal or anything vaguely rock has been generally ignored. They had a rock award for a few years, but their idea of rock included Oasis, The Libertines, Kaiser Cheifs and Snow Patrol. Iron Maiden have a 100% winning streak – one nomination and one win for best live act in 2009 for the previous years Somewhere Back In Time jaunt.
I had a quick look at this years nominations for best album. Someone called Jamie xx has his album In Colour nominated. In the modern age of file sharing and illegal downloading it sold an impressive 60,000 copies – still only 40,000 less than Iron Maiden’s last offering!
The pop part is supposed to mean popular. ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND records is obviously not considered popular or an achievement by the stuffy record executives in their ivory towers. Even after fourty consecutive years as a band shifting millions of records and selling out arenas and stadiums on six continents this doesn’t even get them a sniff of any kind of achievement or recognition award, something the Spice Girls achieved after six years as an entity!!
In 1992 The KLF (a duo I have a bit of a soft spot for) opened up the awards with a truly awful version on their 3 a.m. Eternal single with grind core band Extreme Noise Terror. The machine gun wielding Bill Drummond firing blanks over the crowd was met with polite British applause by an auditorium filled with people who hadn’t got a clue what they had just witnessed. Their performance was closed with a PA announcement of their retirement, and true to their word they haven’t done anything under The KLF moniker since.
Here’s the Brit Awards ENT collaboration.
And for comparison the regular video.