Continuing the trend set by this year’s Grammys, the Brits also managed (for the most part) to make the most of a bad hand. David Bowie received posthumous awards for best album and best male for his stunning final album Blackstar. Belwood favourite Rag’n’Bone Man started the year in style by becoming the first act to ever win both the critics choice award and best breakthrough act in the same year. Emeli Sande won best British female solo artist and The 1975 beat Radiohead and Biffy Clyro to take best band. There were few surprises in the international categories with Beyoncé and Drake winning best female and best male respectively.
Despite being one of the worst batches of nominations in recent memory, this year’s Grammy Awards went better than expected… for the most part. David Bowie picked up posthumous awards for best rock song, rock performance and alternative album. Cage The Elephant won the pitiful pool of nominations for best rock album for their latest release Tell Me I’m Pretty. What was expected to be an endless stream of awards for Beyoncé ended up being clean sweep for Adele, picking up album of the year, song of the year and record of the year, as well as pop album and pop performance. She dedicated her award to Beyonce (and broke it, ‘Mean Girls’ style) in a moving speech. Performance wise the night was marred by technical issues, most notably when James Hetfield’s microphone wasn’t working during Metallica’s performance of ‘Moth Into Flame’ with Lady Gaga. By far the best performance of the night was surprisingly Bruno Mars’ tribute to the dearly departed Prince.
I think for most of us 2016 has been a pretty bleak year; marred by death, destruction and division. One of the few guiding lights to lead us through the darkness has been the exemplary music gifted to us by rising stars, and left behind as a final swansong by dearly departed legends. As we move on into an uncertain 2017 let us look back on the year’s lows as chances to learn and grow, and revel in the highs that show the potential majesty of the human spirit. Here’s Belwood Music’s brief picks of a few of the brightest musical beacons of the past twelve months: Continue reading
Though we have had a tragic year in many respects we have been blessed with some excellent albums. The ranking was closer than ever this year, and there are many releases that deserve a mention, but here are Belwood Music’s top picks of the past 12 months based on album ratings: Continue reading
To coincide with this year’s Belwood Awards we’re introducing a new annual list of the top songs of the year. Apologies for the terrible oversight of not starting one sooner! After re-exploring numerous albums and playlists from January onwards, this list eventually formed after countless shuffle rounds and rethinks. Most of this year’s biggest tunes were from up-and-coming artists which needless to say is a very good sign of a thriving music scene. So without further ado, let’s get down to it: Continue reading
The Polaris Music Prize, Canada’s equivalent of the Mercury Prize, has announced it’s shortlist of the best albums of the year from Canadian artists. The winner of the award and the $50000 prize will be decided by a panel of 196 music journalists and announced during the award gala on 19th September. The shortlist is as follows:
- Black Mountain’s IV
- Basia Bulat’s Good Advice
- Grimes’ Art Angels
- Carly Rae Jepsen’s E•MO•TION
- Kaytranada’s 99.9%
- Jessy Lanza’s Oh No
- PUP’s The Dream Is Over
- Andy Shauf’s The Party
- U.S. Girls’ Half Free
- White Lung’s Paradise
Britain’s premier music magazine has held the most riotous awards ceremony of the year thus far. Foals kicked off proceedings with an electrifying performance of ‘What Went Down’, the title track of what turned out to be album of the year. Belwood favourites Wolf Alice won best live band and best track for ‘Giant Peach’. Coldplay somehow won the Godlike Genius award but had little time to celebrate as Bring Me The Horizon frontman Oli Sykes trashed their table during his live performance. There were surprises to be found as The Maccabees won best British band and Run The Jewels won best international band, each having faced some stiff competition. The girls reigned supreme in the solo categories with Charlie XCX and Taylor Swift winning best British and international solo artists respectively.
The nominations for this year’s Brit Awards have been announced. Adele tops the list along with James Bay and Years & Years with four nominations apiece. As is often the case with the Brits the winners are often easy to guess but most of the important categories seem to be in good hands. Some Belwood favourites have been recognised with nominations including Father John Misty, Wolf Alice and Jack Garratt who has already claimed the Critic’s Choice Award. The Eagles of Death Metal have also been nominated for International Group following the attacks in Paris at one of their concerts. The full list of nominations can be found below: Continue reading
There’s been some excellent music this year, and as Belwood Music is rapidly approaching it’s first birthday it seems like a perfect time to hold the first ever annual awards. There are dozens of artists that are thoroughly deserving of praise, but I’ve chosen to narrow down the awards to 8 categories. Continue reading
It’s been an amazing year, and it’s time to look back on the best of what 2015 has had to offer. It’s been a particularly good year for new artists as debut albums take up half of my top ten, beating some bigger acts such as Tame Impala and Foals who deserve an honourable mention. So without any further ado, here are the best albums of the year based on Belwood Music’s ratings. Continue reading