New Musical Express (NME) is a British music journalism website and former magazine that has been published since 1952. It was the first British paper to include a singles chart, in the edition of 14 November 1952. In the 1970s it became the best-selling British music newspaper. During the period 1972 to 1976, it was particularly associated with gonzo journalism, then became closely associated with punk rock through the writings of Julie Burchill, Paul Morley and Tony Parsons. It started as a music newspaper, and gradually moved toward a magazine format during the 1980s and 1990s, changing from newsprint in 1998.
An online version, NME.com, was launched in 1996. It became the world's biggest standalone music site, with over sixteen million users per month. With newsstand sales falling across the UK magazine sector, the magazine's paid circulation in the first half of 2014 was 15,830. In 2013, the list of NME's The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time and the way it was conceived was criticized by the media.
The printed magazine NME was relaunched in September 2015 to be distributed nationally as a free publication. The first average circulation published in February 2016 of 307,217 copies per week was the highest in the brand's history, beating the previous best of 306,881, recorded in 1964 at the height of the Beatles' fame. By December 2017, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, average distribution of NME had fallen to 289,432 copies a week, although its publisher Time Inc. UK claimed to have more than 13m global unique users per month, including 3m in the UK. In March 2018, the publisher announced that the print edition of NME would cease publication after 66 years, leaving it as an online-only title.
|New Musical Express|
Logo of NME since April 2010
|Editor||Charlotte Gunn (March 2018 – present)|
|Categories||Music website and formerly magazine|
|Circulation||289,432 (ABC Jul – Dec 2017)|
|First issue||7 March 1952|
|Final issue||9 March 2018 (Print)|
|Based in||Southwark, London, England|
The paper was established in 1952. The Accordion Times and Musical Express was bought by London music promoter Maurice Kinn, for the sum of £1,000, just 15 minutes before it was due to be officially closed. It was relaunched as the New Musical Express, and was initially published in a non-glossy tabloid format on standard newsprint. On 14 November 1952, taking its cue from the US magazine Billboard, it created the first UK Singles Chart, a list of the Top Twelve best-selling singles. The first of these was, in contrast to more recent charts, a top twelve sourced by the magazine itself from sales in regional stores around the UK. The first number one was "Here in My Heart" by Al Martino.
During the 1960s the paper championed the new British groups emerging at the time. The NME circulation peaked under Andy Gray (editor 1957–1972) with a figure of 306,881 for the period from January to June 1964. The Beatles and the Rolling Stones were frequently featured on the front cover. These and other artists also appeared at the NME Poll Winners' Concert, an awards event that featured artists voted as most popular by the paper's readers. The concert also featured a ceremony where the poll winners would collect their awards. The NME Poll Winners' Concerts took place between 1959 and 1972. From 1964 onwards they were filmed, edited and transmitted on British television a few weeks after they had taken place.
In the mid-1960s, the NME was primarily dedicated to pop while its older rival, Melody Maker, was known for its more serious coverage of music. Other competing titles included Record Mirror, which led the way in championing American rhythm and blues, and Disc, which focused on chart news. The latter part of the decade saw the paper chart the rise of psychedelia and the continued dominance of British groups of the time. During this period some sections of pop music began to be designated as rock. The paper became engaged in a sometimes tense rivalry with Melody Maker; however, NME sales were healthy, with the paper selling as many as 200,000 issues per week, making it one of the UK's biggest sellers at the time.
By the early 1970s, NME had lost ground to Melody Maker, as its coverage of music had failed to keep place with the development of rock music, particularly during the early years of psychedelia and progressive rock. In early 1972 the paper found itself on the verge of closure by its owner IPC (which had bought the paper from Kinn in 1963). According to Nick Kent (soon to play a prominent part in the paper's revival):
After sales had plummeted to 60,000 and a review of guitar instrumentalist Duane Eddy had been printed which began with the immortal words "On this, his 35th album, we find Duane in as good as voice as ever," the NME had been told to rethink its policies or die on the vine.
Alan Smith was made editor in 1972, and was told by IPC to turn things around quickly or face closure. To achieve this, Smith and his assistant editor Nick Logan raided the underground press for writers such as Charles Shaar Murray and Nick Kent, and recruited other writers such as Tony Tyler, Ian MacDonald and Californian Danny Holloway. According to The Economist, the New Musical Express "started to champion underground, up-and-coming music....NME became the gateway to a more rebellious world. First came glamrock, and bands such as T. Rex, and then came punk....by 1977 it had become the place to keep in touch with a cultural revolution that was enthralling the nation's listless youth. Bands such as Sex Pistols, X-Ray Spex and Generation X were regular cover stars, eulogised by writers such as Julie Burchill and Tony Parsons, whose nihilistic tone narrated the punk years perfectly." By the time Smith handed the editor's chair to Logan in mid-1973, the paper was selling nearly 300,000 copies per week and was outstripping Melody Maker, Disc, Record Mirror and Sounds.
According to MacDonald:
I think all the other papers knew by 1974 that NME had become the best music paper in Britain. We had most of the best writers and photographers, the best layouts, that sense of style of humour and a feeling of real adventure. We also set out to beat Melody Maker on its strong suit: being the serious, responsible journal of record. We did Looking Back and Consumer Guide features that beat the competition out of sight, and we did this not just to surpass our rivals but because we reckoned that rock had finished its first wind around 1969/70 and deserved to be treated as history, as a canon of work. We wanted to see where we'd got to, sort out this huge amount of stuff that had poured out since the mid '60s. Everyone on the paper was into this.
In 1976, NME lambasted German pioneer electronic band Kraftwerk with this title: "This is what your fathers fought to save you from ..." The article said that the "electronic melodies flowed as slowly as a piece of garbage floating down the polluted Rhine". The year 1976 also saw punk rock arrive on what some people perceived to be a stagnant music scene. The NME gave the Sex Pistols their first music press coverage in a live review of their performance at the Marquee in February that year, but overall it was slow to cover this new phenomenon in comparison to Sounds and Melody Maker, where Jonh Ingham and Caroline Coon respectively were early champions of punk. Although articles by the likes of Mick Farren (whose article "The Titanic Sails at Dawn" called for a new street-led rock movement in response to stadium rock) were published by the NME that summer, it was felt that younger writing was needed to credibly cover the emerging punk movement, and the paper advertised for a pair of "hip young gunslingers" to join their editorial staff. This resulted in the recruitment of Tony Parsons and Julie Burchill. The pair rapidly became champions of the punk scene and created a new tone for the paper. Parsons' time at NME is reflected in his 2005 novel Stories We Could Tell, about the misadventures of three young music-paper journalists on the night of 16 August 1977 – the night Elvis Presley died.
In 1978 Logan moved on, and his deputy Neil Spencer was made editor. One of his earliest tasks was to oversee a redesign of the paper by Barney Bubbles, which included the logo still used on the paper's masthead today (albeit in a modified form) – this made its first appearance towards the end of 1978. Spencer's time as editor also coincided with the emergence of post-punk acts such as Joy Division and Gang of Four. This development was reflected in the writing of Ian Penman and Paul Morley. Danny Baker, who began as an NME writer around this time, had a more straightforward and populist style.
The paper also became more openly political during the time of punk. Its cover would sometimes feature youth-orientated issues rather than a musical act. It took an editorial stance against political parties like the National Front. With the election of Margaret Thatcher in 1979 the paper took a broadly socialist stance for much of the following decade.
In the 1980s, the NME became the most important music paper in the country. It released the influential C81 in 1981, in conjunction with Rough Trade Records, available to readers by mail order at a low price. The tape featured a number of then up-and-coming bands, including Aztec Camera, Orange Juice, Linx and Scritti Politti, as well as a number of more established artists such as Robert Wyatt, Pere Ubu, the Buzzcocks and Ian Dury. A second tape, C86, was released in 1986.
The NME responded to the Thatcher era by espousing socialism through movements such as Red Wedge. In the week of the 1987 election, the paper featured an interview with the leader of the Labour Party, Neil Kinnock, who appeared on the paper's cover. He had appeared on the cover once two years before, in April 1985.
However, sales were dropping, and by the mid-1980s, NME had hit a rough patch and was in danger of closing. During this period (now under the editorship of Ian Pye, who replaced Neil Spencer in 1985), they were split between those who wanted to write about hip hop, a genre that was relatively new to the UK, and those who wanted to stick to rock music. Sales were apparently lower when photos of hip hop artists appeared on the front and this led to the paper suffering as the lack of direction became even more apparent to readers. A number of features entirely unrelated to music appeared on the cover in this era, including a piece by William Leith on computer crime and articles by Stuart Cosgrove on such subjects as the politics of sport and the presence of American troops in Britain, with Elvis Presley appearing on the cover not for musical reasons but as a political symbol.
The NME was generally thought to be rudderless at this time, with staff pulling simultaneously in a number of directions in what came to be known as the "hip-hop wars". It was haemorrhaging readers who were deserting NME in favour of Nick Logan's two creations The Face and Smash Hits. This was brought to a head when the paper was about to publish a poster of an insert contained in the Dead Kennedys' album Frankenchrist, consisting of a painting by H.R. Giger called Penis Landscape, then a subject of an obscenity lawsuit in the US. In the summer and autumn of 1987, three senior editorial staff were sacked, including Pye, media editor Stuart Cosgrove and art editor Joe Ewart. Former Sounds editor Alan Lewis was brought in to rescue the paper, mirroring Alan Smith's revival a decade and a half before.
Some commented at this time that the NME had become less intellectual in its writing style and less inventive musically. Initially, NME writers themselves were ill at ease with the new regime, with most signing a letter of no confidence in Lewis shortly after he took over. However, this new direction for the NME proved to be a commercial success and the paper brought in new writers such as Andrew Collins, Stuart Maconie, Mary Anne Hobbs and Steve Lamacq to give it a stronger identity and sense of direction. Lewis prioritised readership over editorial independence, and Mark Sinker left in 1988 after Lewis refused to print his unfavourable review of U2's Rattle and Hum ("the worst album by a major band in years"), replacing it with a glowing Stuart Baillie review intended to be more acceptable to readers.. Initially many of the bands on the C86 tape were championed as well as the rise of gothic rock bands but new bands such as the Happy Mondays and the Stone Roses were coming out of Manchester. One scene over these years was Acid House which spawned "Madchester" which helped give the paper a new lease of life. By the end of the decade, Danny Kelly had replaced Lewis as editor.
By the end of 1990, the Madchester scene was dying off, and NME had started to report on new bands coming from the US, mainly from Seattle. These bands would form a new movement called grunge and by far the most popular bands were Nirvana and Pearl Jam. The NME took to grunge very slowly ("Sounds" was the first British music paper to write about grunge with John Robb being the first to interview Nirvana. Melody Maker was more enthusiastic early on, largely through the efforts of Everett True, who had previously written for NME under the name "The Legend!"). For the most part, NME only became interested in grunge after Nevermind became popular. Although it still supported new British bands, the paper was dominated by American bands, as was the music scene in general.
Although the period from 1991 to 1993 was dominated by American bands like Nirvana, British bands were not ignored. The NME still covered the Indie scene and was involved with a war of words with a new band called Manic Street Preachers who were criticising the NME for what they saw as an elitist view of bands they would champion. This came to a head in 1991 when during an interview with Steve Lamacq, Richey Edwards would confirm the band's position by carving "4real" into his arm with a razor blade.
By 1992, the Madchester scene had died and along with the Manics, some new British bands were beginning to appear. Suede were quickly hailed by the paper as an alternative to the heavy grunge sound and hailed as the start of a new British music scene. Grunge however was still the dominant force, but the rise of new British bands would become something the paper would focus on more and more.
In 1992, the NME also had a very public dispute with Morrissey due to allegations that he had used racist lyrics and imagery. This erupted after a concert at Finsbury Park where Morrissey was seen to drape himself in a Union Flag. The series of articles which followed in the next edition of NME soured Morrissey's relationship with the paper and this led to Morrissey's not speaking to the paper again for over a decade.
Later in 1992, Steve Sutherland, previously assistant editor of Melody Maker, was brought in as the NME's editor to replace Danny Kelly. Andrew Collins, Stuart Maconie, Steve Lamacq and Mary Anne Hobbs all left the NME in protest, and moved to Select; Collins, Maconie and Lamacq would all also write for Q, while Lamacq would join Melody Maker in 1997. Kelly, Collins, Maconie, Lamacq and Hobbs would all subsequently become prominent broadcasters with BBC Radio 1 as it reinvented itself under Matthew Bannister.
In April 1994, Nirvana front-man Kurt Cobain was found dead, a story which affected not only his fans and readers of the NME, but would see a massive change in British music. Grunge was about to be replaced by Britpop, a new form of music influenced by British music of the 1960s and British culture. The term was coined by NME after the band Blur released their album Parklife in the month of Cobain's death. Britpop began to fill the musical and cultural void left after Cobain's demise, and with Blur's success and the rise of a new group from Manchester called Oasis, Britpop would continue its rise for the rest of 1994. By the end of the year Blur and Oasis were the two biggest bands in the UK and sales of the NME were increasing thanks to the Britpop effect. In 1995 NME covered many of these new bands, and many of the bands played the NME Stage at that year's Glastonbury Festival where the paper had been sponsoring the second stage at the festival since 1993. This would be its last year sponsoring the stage; subsequently the stage would be known as the 'Other Stage'.
In August 1995, Blur and Oasis planned to release singles on the same day in a mass of media publicity. Steve Sutherland put the story on the front page of the paper. He was criticised for playing up the duel between the bands. Blur won the 'race' for the top of the charts, and the resulting fallout from the publicity led to the paper enjoying increased sales during the 1990s as Britpop became the dominant musical genre. After this peak the paper experienced a slow decline as Britpop burned itself out fairly rapidly over the next few years. This left the paper directionless again, and attempts to embrace the rise of DJ culture in the late 1990s only led to the paper being criticised for not supporting rock or indie music. The paper did attempt to return to its highly politicised 1980s incarnation by running a cover story in March 1998 condemning Tony Blair, who had previously associated himself with Britpop bands such as Oasis, and this received a certain level of attention in the wider media.
Sutherland did attempt to cover newer bands but one cover feature on Godspeed You! Black Emperor in 1999 saw the paper dip to a sales low, and Sutherland later stated in his weekly editorial that he regretted putting them on the cover. For many this was seen as an affront to the principles of the paper and sales reached a low point at the turn of the millennium.
From the issue of 21 March 1998, the paper was no longer printed on newsprint, and more recently it has shifted to tabloid size with glossy colour covers.
In 2000 Steve Sutherland left to become brand director of the NME, and was replaced as editor by 26-year-old Melody Maker writer Ben Knowles. In the same year Melody Maker officially merged with the NME, and many speculated the NME would be next to close, as the weekly music-magazine market was shrinking - the monthly magazine Select, which had thrived especially during Britpop, was closed down within a week of Melody Maker. In the early 2000s the NME also attempted somewhat to broaden its coverage again, running cover stories on hip-hop acts such as Jay-Z and Missy Elliott, electronic music pioneer Aphex Twin, Popstars winners Hear'say and R&B groups like Destiny's Child, but as in the 1980s these proved unpopular with much of the paper's readership, and were soon dropped. In 2001 the NME reasserted its position as an influence in new music and helped to introduce bands including the Strokes, the Vines, and the White Stripes.
In 2002 Conor McNicholas was appointed editor, with a new wave of photographers including Dean Chalkley, Andrew Kendall, James Looker and Pieter Van Hattem, and a high turnover of young writers. It focused on new British bands such as the Libertines, Franz Ferdinand, Bloc Party and the Kaiser Chiefs which had emerged as indie music continued to grow in commercial success. Later, Arctic Monkeys became the standard-bearers of the post-Libertines crop of indie bands, being both successfully championed by the NME and receiving widespread commercial and critical success.
In December 2005 accusations were made that the NME end-of-year poll had been edited for commercial and political reasons. These criticisms were rebutted by McNicholas, who claimed that webzine Londonist.com had got hold of an early draft of the poll.
In October 2006 NME launched an Irish version of the magazine called NME Ireland. This coincided with the launch of Club NME in Dublin. Dublin-based band Humanzi was first to appear on the cover of NME Ireland. The Irish edition of the magazine could not compete with local competitors such as Hot Press therefore it was discontinued after its fourth issue in February 2007.
"NME bands" fall within very narrow parameters. In the 80s, the paper prided itself on its coverage of hip hop, R&B and the emerging dance scene which it took seriously and featured prominently – alongside the usual Peel-endorsed indie fare. Now, though, its range of approved bands has dramatically shrunk to a strand embodied by the [Arctic] Monkeys, Babyshambles and Muse – bands who you don't need specialist knowledge to write about and who are just "indie" enough to make readers feel they're part of a club. Like everything else in publishing, this particular direction must be in response to reader demand, but it doesn't half make for a self-limiting magazine.
In May 2008 the magazine received a redesign, aimed at an older readership with a less poppy, more authoritative tone. The first issue of the redesign featured a free seven-inch Coldplay vinyl single.
Krissi Murison was appointed editor in June 2009, launching a new redesigned NME in April 2010. The issue had 10 different covers, highlighting the broader range of music the magazine would cover, and featured Jack White, Florence and the Machine, LCD Soundsystem, Rihanna, Kasabian, Laura Marling, Foals, M.I.A., Biffy Clyro and Magnetic Man.
Murison was replaced as editor in July 2012 by Mike Williams, who had previously been the magazine's deputy. Williams is now Editor in Chief, with full responsibility for NME's cross platform output. Under Williams, NME has launched the NME Daily app, a new career focussed event called Lifehacks, and successfully relaunched both NME magazine and NME's website, NME.com.
In 2013, NME's The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time was criticized by the media. The Guardian pointed that Features Editor, Laura Snapes, included in her top 5 "greatest albums of all time", four albums from the same band which was The National. Consequence of Sound similarly observed that "if Laura Snapes had her wish, the top four would all be The National albums".
The free NME launched on 18 September 2015, with Rihanna on the cover. Distributed nationwide via universities, retail stores and the transport network, the first circulation numbers published in February 2016 of 307, 217 copies per week were the highest in the brand's history. Since relaunch the magazine has featured a number of high-profile international pop stars on the cover such as Coldplay, Taylor Swift, Lana Del Rey, Kanye West and Green Day alongside emerging talent like Zara Larsson, Years & Years, Lady Leshurr and Christine and the Queens.
The free, pop-oriented NME magazine has been praised for reconnecting NME with its target audience, and was awarded a silver at the 2016 Professional Publishers Association Awards for its historic first-ever cover as a free title, featuring Rihanna. Editor in Chief Mike Williams received the Editor Of The Year Award at the BSME Awards 2016, the judges stating that under Williams' leadership, NME had "bounced back from an uncertain future and established itself confidently and creatively in a new market."
In March 2018 The Guardian announced  that the NME was to cease publication in print after 66 years. The online publication would continue.
In 1996 the NME started its website NME.com under the stewardship of NME editor Steve Sutherland and NME publisher Robert Tame. Its first editor was Brendan Fitzgerald. Later Anthony Thornton redesigned the site, focusing on music news. In November 1999 the site hosted the UK's first webcast, of Suede 'Live in Japan'. In 2001 the site gave away a free MP3 of the Strokes' single "Last Nite" a week before its release.
The website was awarded Online Magazine of the Year in 1999 and 2001; Anthony Thornton was awarded Website Editor of the Year on three occasions – 2001 and 2002 (British Society of Magazine Editors) and 2002 (Periodical Publishers Association).
In 2004, Ben Perreau joined NME.com as the website's third editor. He relaunched and redeveloped the title in September 2005 and the focus was migrated towards video, audio and the wider music community. It was awarded Best Music Website at the Record of the Day awards in October 2005. In 2006 was awarded the BT Digital Music Award for Best Music Magazine and the first chairman's Award from the Association of Online Publishers awarded by the chairman, Simon Waldman in recognition of its pioneering role in its 10-year history.
In 2007, NME.com was launched in the USA with additional staff.
In October 2007, David Moynihan joined as the website's fourth editor. In 2008 the site won the BT Digital Music Award for Best Music Magazine, plus the Association of Online Publishers' Best Editorial Team Award, the British Society of Magazine Editors Website Editor of the Year and the Record of the Day Award for Best Music Website. In June 2009 NME.com won PPA Interactive Consumer Magazine of the Year (Periodical Publishers Association). In 2010 it won both the AOP and PPA website of the year award. That same year, NME.com expanded its coverage to include movies and TV as well as music.
Luke Lewis took over as editor of NME.com in March 2011, bringing a new focus on video content and user engagement, bringing comments to the fore and introducing user ratings on reviews. In 2011, NME.com had over 7 million monthly unique users (source: Omniture SiteCatalyst, 2011).
In May 2011, NME.com launched a sister site dedicated to video, NMEVideo.com, and released the NME Festivals smartphone app. Sponsored by BlackBerry, it featured line-ups, stage times, photo galleries and backstage video interviews, and was downloaded 30,000 times. The following month, NME launched its first iPad app, dedicated to Jack White.
In September 2011, NME.com organised and live-blogged a real-time Nirvana Nevermind Twitter listening party to mark the 20th anniversary of the classic album. The site also launched a new series of self-produced band documentary films, entitled The Ultimate Guide.
In 2015 NME appointed Charlotte Gunn as digital editor , replacing Greg Cochrane. Under Gunn, NME.com doubled in size and with a focus on social and video built a sustainable future as an online only brand. Gunn was appointed Editor in March 2018, after the closure of the weekly print magazine.
NME Awards is an awards show held every year to celebrate the best new music of the past year. The nominations and eventual winners are voted for by the readers of the magazine.
NME sponsors a tour of the United Kingdom by up-and-coming bands each year.
In 2002 the NME started publishing a series of themed magazines reprinting vintage articles, interviews and reviews from the NME archives. The magazine special editions were called NME Originals, with some featuring articles from other music titles owned by IPC, including Melody Maker, Rave and Uncut magazines. Notable issues so far have featured Arctic Monkeys, Radiohead, the Beatles, Punk rock, Gothic rock, Britpop, the Rolling Stones, Mod, Nirvana, and the solo years of the Beatles. The series has had several editors, the most prominent of whom have been Steve Sutherland and Chris Hunt. The most recent issue of NME Originals was published in 2005.
Alexander David Turner (born 6 January 1986) is an English musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer. He is best known as the frontman and principal songwriter of the rock band Arctic Monkeys, with whom he has released six albums. He has also recorded with his side project The Last Shadow Puppets and as a solo artist.
Turner was born and raised in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, the only child of two secondary school teachers. When he was 16, he and three friends formed Arctic Monkeys. Their debut album, Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not (2006), became the fastest-selling debut album in British history and was ranked at No. 30 on Rolling Stone's list of the greatest debut albums of all time. The band's subsequent studio albums, Favourite Worst Nightmare (2007), Humbug (2009), Suck It and See (2011), AM (2013) and Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino (2018), have experimented with desert rock, indie pop, R&B, and lounge music. Arctic Monkeys headlined Glastonbury Festival in both 2007 and 2013, and performed during the 2012 London Summer Olympics opening ceremony.
Turner and Miles Kane have released two orchestral pop albums – The Age Of The Understatement (2008) and Everything You've Come To Expect (2016) – as the co-frontmen of The Last Shadow Puppets. Turner provided an acoustic soundtrack for the feature film Submarine (2010). He co-wrote and co-produced Alexandra Savior's debut album, Belladonna of Sadness (2017).
Turner's lyricism, ranging from kitchen sink realism to surrealist wordplay, has been widely praised. Each of his eight studio albums have reached number one on the UK Album Chart. He has won seven Brit Awards, an Ivor Novello Award, and has been nominated for the Mercury Prize five times, winning once.Arctic Monkeys
Arctic Monkeys are an English rock band formed in 2002 in High Green, a suburb of Sheffield. The band consists of Alex Turner (lead vocals, guitar, piano), Matt Helders (drums, vocals), Jamie Cook (guitar, keyboards) and Nick O'Malley (bass guitar, backing vocals). Former band member Andy Nicholson (bass guitar, backing vocals) left the band in 2006 shortly after their debut album was released.
They have released six studio albums: Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not (2006), Favourite Worst Nightmare (2007), Humbug (2009), Suck It and See (2011), AM (2013), and Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino (2018), as well as one live album, At the Apollo (2008). Their debut album is the fastest-selling debut album by a band in UK chart history, and in 2013, Rolling Stone ranked it the 30th-greatest debut album.The band has won seven Brit Awards – winning both Best British Group and Best British Album three times, and have been nominated for five Grammy Awards. They also won the Mercury Prize in 2006 for their debut album, in addition to receiving nominations in 2007, 2013 and 2018. The band have headlined at the Glastonbury Festival twice, in 2007 and again in 2013.
Arctic Monkeys were heralded as one of the first bands to come to public attention via the Internet, with commentators suggesting they represented the possibility of a change in the way in which new bands are promoted and marketed.Bloc Party
Bloc Party are an English rock band, composed of Kele Okereke (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards, sampler), Russell Lissack (lead guitar, keyboards), Justin Harris (bass guitar, keyboards, saxophones, backing vocals) and Louise Bartle (drums, percussion). Former members Matt Tong and Gordon Moakes left the band in 2013 and 2015 respectively. Their brand of music, whilst rooted in rock, retains elements of other genres such as electronica and house music. The band was formed at the 1999 Reading Festival by Okereke and Lissack. They went through a variety of names before settling on Bloc Party in 2003. Moakes joined the band after answering an advert in NME magazine, while Tong was picked via an audition. Bloc Party got their break by giving BBC Radio 1 DJ Steve Lamacq and Franz Ferdinand's lead singer, Alex Kapranos, a copy of their demo "She's Hearing Voices".
In February 2005, the band released their debut album Silent Alarm. It was critically acclaimed and was named Indie Album of the Year at the 2006 PLUG Awards and NME Album of the year which both honour indie music. That year, the record was also certified platinum in Britain. The band built on this success in 2007 with the release of their second studio album, A Weekend in the City, which reached a peak of number two in the UK Albums Chart and number twelve in the Billboard 200. In August 2008, Bloc Party released their third studio record, Intimacy which entered the UK Albums Chart at number eight and number eighteen on the Billboard 200. The band went on a hiatus in October 2009 to focus on side projects. They reunited in September 2011, and shortly thereafter released their fourth album, Four, which entered the UK Albums Chart at number three. In 2013, Bloc Party released their third EP titled The Nextwave Sessions in August; the band then began an indefinite hiatus to continue with their respective side projects. The band's fifth studio album, Hymns, the first to involve Harris and Bartle, was released on 29 January 2016. Bloc Party have sold over 3 million albums worldwide.Blur (band)
Blur are an English rock band, formed in London in 1988. The group consists of singer/keyboardist Damon Albarn, guitarist/singer Graham Coxon, bassist Alex James and drummer Dave Rowntree. Their debut album Leisure (1991) incorporated the sounds of Madchester and shoegazing. Following a stylistic change influenced by English guitar pop groups such as the Kinks, the Beatles and XTC, Blur released Modern Life Is Rubbish (1993), Parklife (1994) and The Great Escape (1995). In the process, the band became central to the Britpop music and culture movement, and achieved mass popularity in the UK, aided by a chart battle with rivals Oasis in 1995 dubbed the "Battle of Britpop".
In recording their follow-up, Blur (1997), the band underwent another reinvention, showing influence from the lo-fi style of American indie rock groups. The band's third UK number one album, Blur included the "Song 2" single, which brought them mainstream success in the US. Their next album, 13 (1999) saw the band members experimenting with electronic and gospel music, and featured more personal lyrics from Albarn. In May 2002, Coxon left Blur during the recording of their seventh album Think Tank (2003). Containing electronic sounds and more minimal guitar work, the album was marked by Albarn's growing interest in hip hop and African music. After a 2003 tour without Coxon, Blur did no studio work or touring as a band, as members engaged in other projects.
Blur reunited, with Coxon back in the fold, for a series of concerts in 2009. In the following years they released several singles and retrospective compilations, and toured internationally. In 2012, the group received a Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music. Their first major release in twelve years, The Magic Whip (2015), became the sixth consecutive Blur studio album to top the British charts.Florence and the Machine
Florence and the Machine (stylised as Florence + the Machine) are an English indie rock band that formed in London in 2007, consisting of vocalist Florence Welch, keyboardist Isabella Summers, and a collaboration of other musicians. The band's music received praise across the media, especially from the BBC, which played a large part in their rise to prominence by promoting Florence and the Machine as part of BBC Introducing. At the 2009 Brit Awards they received the Brit Awards "Critics' Choice" award. The band's music is renowned for its dramatic and eccentric production and also Welch's powerful vocal performances.
The band's debut studio album, Lungs, was released on 6 July 2009, and held the number-two position for its first five weeks on the UK Albums Chart. On 17 January 2010, the album reached the top position, after being on the chart for twenty-eight consecutive weeks. As of October 2010, the album had been in the top forty in the United Kingdom for sixty-five consecutive weeks, making it one of the best-selling albums of 2009 and 2010. The group's second studio album, Ceremonials, released in October 2011, entered the charts at number one in the UK and number six in the US. The band's third album, How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful, was released on 2 June 2015. It topped the UK charts, and debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, their first to do so. The album reached number one in a total of eight countries and the top ten of twenty. Also in 2015, the band was the headlining act at Glastonbury Festival, making Florence Welch the first British female headliner this century.Florence and the Machine's sound has been described as a combination of various genres, including rock and soul. Lungs won the Brit Award for Best British Album in 2010. Florence and the Machine have been nominated for six Grammy Awards including Best New Artist and Best Pop Vocal Album. Additionally, the band performed at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards and the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize Concert.In Rainbows
In Rainbows is the seventh studio album by English rock band Radiohead. It was self-released on 10 October 2007 as a pay-what-you-want download, followed by a physical release internationally by XL Recordings in December 2007 and in the United States on 1 January 2008 by TBD Records. It was Radiohead's first release after their recording contract with EMI ended with their previous album Hail to the Thief (2003).
Radiohead worked on In Rainbows for more than two years, beginning in early 2005. In 2006, after their initial recording sessions with new producer Spike Stent proved fruitless, the band toured Europe and North America performing In Rainbows material before re-enlisting longtime producer Nigel Godrich. The album is more personal than previous Radiohead albums, with singer Thom Yorke describing most of the songs as his versions of "seduction songs". Radiohead incorporated a variety of musical styles and instruments, using electronic instruments, string arrangements, piano, and the ondes Martenot.
The album's pay-what-you-want release, the first for a major act, made headlines around the world and sparked debate about implications for the music industry. The physical release debuted at number 1 on the UK Albums Chart and the US Billboard 200, and had sold over three million copies worldwide by October 2008. The album received critical acclaim and was ranked one of the best albums of 2007 and of the decade by various publications. It won two Grammy Awards for Best Alternative Music Album and Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package. In 2012, Rolling Stone placed In Rainbows at number 336 on their updated list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.Kasabian
Kasabian ( kə-SAY-bee-ən) are an English rock band formed in Leicester in 1997. The band's original members were vocalist Tom Meighan, guitarist and vocalist Sergio Pizzorno, guitarist Chris Karloff, and bassist Chris Edwards. The band's line-up was completed by drummer Ian Matthews in 2004 after a string of session drummers. Karloff left the band in 2006 and founded a new band called Black Onassis. Jay Mehler joined as touring lead guitarist in 2006. Mehler left the band for Liam Gallagher's Beady Eye in 2013, to be replaced by Tim Carter. In 2010 and 2014, Kasabian won the Q Awards for "Best Act in the World Today", while they were also named "Best Live Act" at the 2014 Q Awards and the 2007 and 2018 NME Awards. The band's music is often described as "indie rock", but Pizzorno has said he "hates indie bands" and does not feel Kasabian fit into that category.Kasabian have released six studio albums – Kasabian (2004), Empire (2006), West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum (2009), Velociraptor! (2011), 48:13 (2014), and For Crying Out Loud (2017). The band's music has been described as a mix between The Stone Roses and Primal Scream with the swagger of Oasis. Their music has won them several awards and recognition in the media, including a Brit Award in 2010 for Best British Group, and their live performances have received praise, the most notable of which was their appearance as headliners at the 2014 Glastonbury Festival.Klaxons
Klaxons were an English band, based in London. Following the release of several 7-inch singles on different independent record labels, as well as the success of previous singles "Magick" and "Golden Skans", the band released their debut album, Myths of the Near Future on 29 January 2007. The album won the 2007 Nationwide Mercury Prize. After playing festivals and headlining tours worldwide (including the NME Indie Rave Tour) during late 2006–07, the band started working on their follow-up album in July 2007. Klaxons' second album, Surfing the Void, was released on 23 August 2010. Their third album, Love Frequency, was released on 16 June 2014.The band have been on indefinite hiatus since 2014.La Roux
La Roux ( lah-ROO) is an English synth-pop act formed in 2006 by singer Eleanor "Elly" Jackson and record producer Ben Langmaid. Their debut album La Roux (2009) was a critical and commercial success, winning a Grammy Award and producing hit singles such as "In for the Kill" and "Bulletproof". Recording of a follow-up album was marred by unsuccessful collaborations, the cancellation of two planned release dates, and reported conflict between the duo. Langmaid ultimately left the group, and Jackson released a second album, Trouble in Paradise, in 2014, maintaining the former duo's name.Matt Bellamy
Matthew James Bellamy (born 9 June 1978) is an English singer, musician, and songwriter. He is best known as the lead singer, guitarist, pianist, and primary songwriter of the rock band Muse. He is recognised for his eccentric stage persona, wide tenor vocal range, and abilities on the piano and guitar.Many Muse songs are recognisable by Bellamy's use of vibrato, falsetto, and melismatic phrasing, influenced by Jeff Buckley. As a guitarist, Bellamy often uses the arpeggiator and pitch-shift effects to create a more "electronic" sound, citing Jimi Hendrix and Tom Morello as influences. His guitar playing is also influenced by Latin and Spanish guitar music. His lyrics often incorporate political and dystopian themes.
Muse have won numerous awards, including two Grammy Awards, winning the Grammys for Best Rock Album for The Resistance and Drones, two Brit Awards, winning Best British Live Act twice, five MTV Europe Music Awards and eight NME Awards. They have sold over 20 million albums worldwide. In 2012 the band received the Ivor Novello Award for International Achievement from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors.Muse (band)
Muse are an English rock band from Teignmouth, Devon, formed in 1994. The band consists of Matt Bellamy (lead vocals, guitar, keyboards), Chris Wolstenholme (bass guitar, backing vocals), and Dominic Howard (drums).
Muse signed to Maverick Records and released their debut album, Showbiz, in 1999, showcasing Bellamy's falsetto and a melancholic alternative rock style. Their second album, Origin of Symmetry (2001), incorporated wider instrumentation and romantic classical influences, and earned them a reputation for energetic live performances. Absolution (2003) saw further classical influence, with orchestra on tracks such as "Butterflies and Hurricanes", and became the first of five consecutive UK number-one albums.
Black Holes and Revelations (2006) incorporated electronic and pop elements, displayed in singles such as "Supermassive Black Hole". The album brought Muse wider international success. The Resistance (2009) and The 2nd Law (2012) explored themes of government oppression and civil uprising and cemented Muse as one of the world's major stadium acts. Their seventh album, Drones (2015), was a concept album about drone warfare and returned to a harder rock sound. Their eighth album, Simulation Theory (2018), prominently featured synthesisers and was influenced by science fiction and the simulation hypothesis.
Muse have won numerous awards, including two Grammy Awards, two Brit Awards, five MTV Europe Music Awards and eight NME Awards. In 2012 they received the Ivor Novello Award for International Achievement from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors. As of June 2016, they have sold over 20 million albums worldwide.NME Awards
The NME Awards is an annual music awards show in the United Kingdom, founded by the music magazine, NME (New Musical Express). The first awards show was held in 1953 as the NME Poll Winners Concerts, shortly after the founding of the magazine. Though the accolades given are entirely genuine, the ceremony itself is usually carried out in a humorous and jovial manner, and have included categories in the past like "Villain of the year" and "Worst Record". The trophies given to the winners resemble an extended middle finger.NME TV
NME TV was a British music television channel owned and operated by CSC Media Group (formerly Chart Show Channels). This was a similar arrangement to its radio station, NME Radio, which is operated by Town and Country Broadcasting. The channel replaced Minx on 22 November 2007. NME TV launched at 6.00am that day with "Up the Bracket" by The Libertines being the first video to be played on the channel.
On 3 November 2010, NME TV was replaced with Scuzz on Freesat channel 503. On 1 February 2011, NME TV relaunched on Freesat on channel 516.
NME TV closed on 5 January 2012 and was replaced with Chart Show TV +1, with "No Good (Start the Dance)" by The Prodigy being the final music video to be played on the channel. Chart Show TV +1 acted as a placeholder until the launch of BuzMuzik in May 2012.Oasis (band)
Oasis were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1991. Developed from an earlier group, the Rain, the band originally consisted of Liam Gallagher (vocals, tambourine), Paul "Bonehead" Arthurs (guitar), Paul "Guigsy" McGuigan (bass guitar) and Tony McCarroll (drums). Upon returning to Manchester, Liam's older brother, Noel Gallagher (lead guitar, vocals) joined as a fifth member, which formed the band's core and settled line-up. During the course of their existence, they had various line-up changes.
Oasis signed to independent record label Creation Records in 1993 and released their record-setting debut album Definitely Maybe (1994). The following year the band recorded (What's the Story) Morning Glory? (1995) with drummer Alan White, in the midst of a chart rivalry with Britpop peers Blur. (What's the Story) Morning Glory? became one of the best-selling albums of all time, selling over 22 million copies worldwide and the Gallagher brothers were featured regularly in tabloid newspapers for their sibling disputes and wild lifestyles. In 1996, Oasis performed two nights at Knebworth for an audience of 125,000 each night, which were at the time the largest outdoor concerts in UK history. 2.5 million people applied for tickets, which remains the highest demand for a show in British history. In 1997, Oasis released their third album, Be Here Now (1997); although it was the fastest selling album in UK chart history, and went on to sell 8 million copies, its popularity tapered off quickly.
McGuigan and Arthurs left Oasis in 1999 as the band released Standing on the Shoulder of Giants (2000). They were replaced by former Heavy Stereo guitarist/frontman Gem Archer and former Ride guitarist/frontman Andy Bell. Their fifth studio album Heathen Chemistry was released in 2002. In 2004, White left, leaving them as a four-piece, with the addition of the Who drummer Zak Starkey as an unofficial recording and touring fifth member. They found renewed success and popularity with Don't Believe the Truth (2005). Following the recording of the band's seventh album Dig Out Your Soul in May 2008, Starkey departed from the band. Chris Sharrock was recruited as a touring member, and Oasis did their last tour as a collective band. During the tour the Gallagher brothers' deteriorating relationship led to Noel Gallagher announcing his departure in August 2009, after a backstage altercation with Liam. The rest of the band, led by Liam, decided to continue, under the name Beady Eye, until their breakup in 2014. Noel formed a solo project, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds.
Oasis have had eight UK number-one singles and eight UK number-one albums. They have won 17 NME Awards, nine Q Awards, four MTV Europe Music Awards and six Brit Awards, including one in 2007 for Outstanding Contribution to Music and one for the Best Album of the Last 30 Years–for (What's the Story) Morning Glory?–as voted by BBC Radio 2 listeners; (What's the Story) Morning Glory? is also the fifth best-selling album in UK chart history, and was the UK's biggest-selling album of the 1990s. They have been nominated for two Grammy Awards. As of 2009, Oasis have sold over 75 million records worldwide. The band were listed in the Guinness World Records book in 2010 for "Longest Top 10 UK Chart Run by a Group" after an unprecedented run of 22 top 10 hits in the UK. The band also holds the Guinness World Record for the most successful act in the UK between the years 1995 and 2005, spending 765 weeks in the top 75 singles and albums charts.Pete Doherty
Peter Daniell Doherty (born 12 March 1979) is an English musician, songwriter, actor, poet, writer, and artist. He is best known for being co-frontman of the Libertines, which he formed with Carl Barât in 1997. His other musical projects are indie band Babyshambles and Peter Doherty and the Puta Madres.Radiohead
Radiohead are an English rock band formed in Abingdon-on-Thames in 1985. The band consists of Thom Yorke (vocals, guitar, piano, keyboards), brothers Jonny Greenwood (lead guitar, keyboards, other instruments) and Colin Greenwood (bass), Ed O'Brien (guitar, backing vocals) and Philip Selway (drums, percussion). They have worked with producer Nigel Godrich and cover artist Stanley Donwood since 1994.
After signing to EMI in 1991, Radiohead released their debut single "Creep" in 1992. It became a worldwide hit after the release of their debut album, Pablo Honey (1993). Their popularity and critical standing rose in the United Kingdom with the release of their second album, The Bends (1995). Radiohead's third album, OK Computer (1997), brought them international fame; noted for its complex production and themes of modern alienation, it is often acclaimed as a landmark record of the 1990s and one of the best albums in popular music. The group's next albums Kid A (2000) and Amnesiac (2001), recorded simultaneously, marked a dramatic change in style, incorporating influences from experimental electronic music, 20th-century classical music, krautrock, and jazz. Kid A divided listeners but was named the best album of the decade by Rolling Stone, Pitchfork and The Times.
Radiohead's sixth album, Hail to the Thief (2003), mixed rock and electronic music with lyrics inspired by the War on Terror, and was the band's final album for EMI. Their subsequent releases have pioneered alternative release platforms such as pay-what-you-want and BitTorrent; Radiohead self-released their seventh album, In Rainbows (2007), as a download for which customers could set their own price, to critical and chart success. Their eighth album, The King of Limbs (2011), an exploration of rhythm, was developed using extensive looping and sampling. A Moon Shaped Pool (2016) prominently featured Jonny Greenwood's orchestral arrangements.
Radiohead had sold more than 30 million albums worldwide by 2011. Their work places highly in both listener polls and critics' lists of the best music of the 1990s and 2000s. In 2005, they were ranked 73rd in Rolling Stone's list of "The Greatest Artists of All Time"; Jonny Greenwood and O'Brien were both included in Rolling Stone's list of greatest guitarists, and Yorke in their list of greatest singers. In 2009, Rolling Stone readers voted Radiohead the second-best artist of the 2000s. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2019.The Killers
The Killers are an American rock band formed in Las Vegas, Nevada, in 2001 by members Brandon Flowers (lead vocals, keyboards, bass) and Dave Keuning (lead guitar, backing vocals). Mark Stoermer (bass, rhythm guitar, backing vocals) and Ronnie Vannucci Jr. (drums, percussion) completed the current lineup of the band in 2002. The band's name is derived from a logo on the bass drum of a fictitious band portrayed in the music video for the New Order song "Crystal".The band has released five consecutive chart-topping studio albums: Hot Fuss (2004), Sam's Town (2006), Day & Age (2008), Battle Born (2012) and Wonderful Wonderful (2017). They have also released a B-sides and rarities compilation, Sawdust (2007); a live album, Live from the Royal Albert Hall (2009); a greatest-hits album, Direct Hits (2013); and a Christmas compilation, Don't Waste Your Wishes (2016).
The Killers are seen as one of the biggest rock bands of the 21st century, and the most successful act to ever emerge from Nevada. They achieved worldwide success as a live band, performing in over 50 countries and on six continents, headlining venues such as Madison Square Garden and Wembley Stadium.The Smiths
The Smiths were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1982. The band consisted of vocalist Morrissey, guitarist Johnny Marr, bassist Andy Rourke and drummer Mike Joyce. Critics have called them one of the most important bands to emerge from the British independent music scene of the 1980s. In 2002, NME named the Smiths "the artists to have had the most influence on the NME". In 2003, four of the band's albums appeared on Rolling Stone's list of the "500 Greatest Albums of All Time".
Based on the songwriting partnership of Morrissey and Marr, the group signed to the independent record label Rough Trade Records, on which they released four studio albums. They have also released several compilations and numerous non-album singles. They had several singles reach the top twenty of the UK Singles Chart and all four of their studio albums reached the top five of the UK Albums Chart, including Meat Is Murder which hit number one. They won a significant following and remain cult favourites. The band broke up in 1987 due to internal tensions and have turned down several offers to reunite.The band's focus on a guitar, bass, and drum sound and their fusion of 1960s rock and post-punk, were a rejection of the then-popular, synthesiser-based dance-pop. Marr's guitar work, using a Rickenbacker, had a jangle pop sound reminiscent of Roger McGuinn of the Byrds. Morrissey's complex, literate lyrics combined themes about ordinary people with mordant humour.The Strokes
The Strokes are an American rock band from New York City. Formed in 1998, the band is composed of singer Julian Casablancas, lead guitarist Nick Valensi, rhythm guitarist Albert Hammond Jr., bassist Nikolai Fraiture, and drummer Fabrizio Moretti. Following the conclusion of five-album deals with RCA and Rough Trade, the band has continued to release new music through Casablancas' Cult Records.
Met with widespread critical acclaim, the Strokes' 2001 debut, Is This It, helped usher in the garage rock revival movement of the early-21st century—and ranks number eight on Rolling Stone's 100 Best Debut Albums of All Time, number two on Rolling Stone's 100 Best Albums of the '00s, 199 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time and number four in the NME top 500 albums of all time.
British contemporary-music magazines