The three biggest acts of the Brits couldn't be more different.
David Bowie still knows how to steal the show. He proved as much during Wednesday’s Brits, without even attending the ceremony. Bowie won best British Male during the 2014 ceremony, making something of a comeback after his last win in 1984. His latest album, The Next Day, represents an musical achievement, unrivaled in the past two decades at least. Without once appearing onstage, Bowie stage-managed his first album in a decade, and managed to top the UK Album Chart and go to Number 2 on the Billboard Chart. In short, congrats to David Bowie, who, at 67, continues to win everything.
David Bowie. That is all.
In other Brit news, the winners this year were quite a diverse bunch, from Bowie to the Arctic Monkeys to One Direction. Indie quartet the Arctic Monkeys, who achieved new heights and international recognition with their 2013 album AM, unsurprisingly picked up the Brit for Best Album too. This prompted frontman Alex Turner to launch into an ever-so-slightly smug victory speech. “That rock-and-roll it just won’t go away. That rock-and-roll, it seems like it’s fading away sometimes, but it will never die,” Arctic Monkeys frontman Alex Turner said as he received the band’s second gong of the night for the Mastercard British album of the year. The Arctic Monkeys also picked up Best Group, to which Turner reacted with “There’s that fifteen quid we put on One Direction to win down the drain.” Solid burn.
Alright, no need to get smug.
In a sense, it was as much the Sheffield rockers’ show as it was Bowie’s. Before winning the most important categories of the night, the Arctic Monkeys opened the show with their Opening the event with their track “R U Mine”, in the shadow of giant versions of the letters “AM”, flaming and suspended in mid-air. Not a bad way to make their Brits debut.
But don’t worry, 1D didn’t go home empty-handed either. The band picked up the global success award, as well as the best video, where the winner was decided by a Twitter vote (naturally). With 17.8 million devoted Directioners, who follow them on Twitter, winning was a given.
One Direction also won some stuff.