Tuesday, January 10, 2006

A Brit on the side

Time, then, to look at the nominees for this year's Brit Awards, the annual event where labels spend far too much on otherwise simple live performances and the only worthwhile events are only reported on three days later:

Best British album: Aerial, Back To Bedlam, Demon Days, Employment, X&Y
The first of five mentions for the Chiefs and the guardsman. Good to see the Kate Bush nomination of cliche has got in, although you'd have to say it's fair enough in a year when she's actually released something. Probable winner: Kaisers.

British male solo artist: Antony and the Johnsons, Ian Brown, James Blunt, Robbie Williams, Will Young
Oh, don't start the "but he's American!" argument again, even if the steering group seem to imagine And The Johnsons is just his imagination, like in the film Harvey (there are permanent Johnsons, a string section and guitarist as we recall) Ian Brown gets nominated for this every single year. Probable winner: Robbie, just because he'd have to have something.

British female solo artist: Natasha Bedingfield, Kate Bush, Charlotte Church, Katie Melua, KT Tunstall
They think highly of Natasha in America, you understand, even if they've been sidelined here. What chance the much discussed other musical Bedingfields now? Probable winner: Bush.

British group: Coldplay, Franz Ferdinand, Gorillaz, Hard-Fi, Kaiser Chiefs
You or us could have named four of these twelve months ago, assuming we'd been told who was releasing albums in 2005. Probable winner: Coldplay, because they're going to be there.

British single (Voted by UK commercial radio listeners): Is This The Way To Amarillo?, Push The Button, Speed Of Sound, That's My Goal, You're Beautiful
One of those wasn't even a British single this year. We thought the nominees were automatically picked from the five most commercial radio played UK hits of the year, but That's My Goal can't have been played that much, and while four of them are four of the five biggest selling homegrown singles of the year (Mr Red Penguin has the top 200) Speed Of Sound is well done. Probable winner: That's My Goal, because it's the most recent

British breakthrough act (Voted by Radio 1 listeners and the Brits Academy): Arctic Monkeys, James Blunt, Kaiser Chiefs, KT Tunstall, Magic Numbers
Hang on, what are the Academy doing here? Getting ready to change the leader just in case ver Monkeys don't show up? Probable winner: Arctic Monkeys if purely on votes, Kaisers if seasonally adjusted.

British urban act (Voted by MTV Base viewers and the Brits Academy): Craig David, Dizzee Rascal, Kano, Lemar, Ms Dynamite
It's five years now since Craig David was nominated for a load of Brits and won nothing, and performing halfway through the ceremony he broke into a freestyle rap which included the line "no brits for CD". How did he know then? At least Joss Stone's not qualified. Probable winner: Lemar

British rock act (Voted by Kerrang! TV viewers and the Brits Academy): Franz Ferdinand, Hard-Fi, Kaiser Chiefs, Kasabian, Oasis
All Kerrang! target market, of course. Probable winner: Oasis if the 3am Girls reckon they'll turn up, Kaisers otherwise

Pop act (Voted by CD:UK viewers, The Sun Bizarre column readers and O2/Motorola customers): James Blunt, Kelly Clarkson, Katie Melua, Madonna, Westlife
Surely it should have been split into UK and international categories long before now to avoid confusion that doesn't already come into play by the redefinition of the word 'pop' exhibited here - the nominations could easily have been Charlotte Church, Girls Aloud, McFly, Nelly and Sugababes and it wouldn't have been any weaker for what it's been set up as. Probably stronger without Melua, actually. Probable winner: Westlife. It's a CD:UK and teen girls on phones vote, remember

British live act (Voted by Radio 2 and a panel of selectors): Coldplay, Franz Ferdinand, Kaiser Chiefs, Oasis, KT Tunstall
Well, that was worth dropping Best Video for. The judging panel, via whoever was on it from the Independent, were supposedly furious that they'd been forced against their will to nominate acts who had played actual paid-for gigs that people could easily go to and not Pink Floyd. Diddums. Probable winner: Coldplay

International male solo artist: Beck, Jack Johnson, John Legend, Bruce Springsteen, Kanye West
A category that's often good for an unlikely nomination or two, although this year we won't get the Brits preview show talking heads being asked for their opinions on Tom Waits unlike 2005, worse luck. Probable winner: Kanye, and he'll be there

International female solo artist: Bjork, Mariah Carey, Kelly Clarkson, Missy Elliott, Madonna
Bjork seems to get into this one suspiciously often. Probable winner: Madonna

International album: American Idiot, Confessions On A Dancefloor, Funeral, How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb, Late Registration
Yes, Funeral, and you've not heard the last of Arcade Fire here yet. We won't mention ...Atomic Bomb came out in November 2004 and was nominated last year if you don't. Probable winner: if the committee notice that in time, Kanye again

International group: Arcade Fire, Black Eyed Peas, Green Day, U2, White Stripes
If we were organising the awards, we reckon we'd have gone "to hell with it" and incorporated Irish acts long before now, as it just looks slightly odd otherwise. Probable winner: they haven't, so U2.

International breakthrough act: Arcade Fire, Jack Johnson, John Legend, Daniel Powter, Pussycat Dolls
Daniel Powter? Did Snow get nominated in 1992? Probable winner: as great the thought of Win and Regine quickly trying to think of something to say as they approach the podium is, we suspect they'll play safe and go for the Radio 2 casting vote of Jack Johnson

Outstanding contribution to music: Paul Weller
Didn't say anything about never reforming the Style Council, you know.

The awards are on 15th February, the tie-in album (featuring some people who haven't been named above, which is just taking the piss) is tracklisted here, and we'll hopefully be augmenting every other UK music blog in providing a live minute by minute precis of the ceremony the following day. Chris Evans is presenting again. Whoopee.


EasyRyder said...

I'm hoping Kano will win Best British urban act. He really deserves it this year.

deleteasappropriate said...

Best British Rock Act was practically just brought in for The Darkness that one year that they built the whole ceremony around them, wasn't it?
With 3/5 nominations the same as Best British Group (and 3/5 of Live Act between them too) it's looking more pointless than the Best Dance one ever did already...

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