BRIT Awards 2014 Recap: The Good, The Bad & Alex Turner

So, the BRIT Awards 2014, then. The annual shit-show in which everyone who shouldn’t be anyone piles into a room to accept gongs which will be placed at the very back of their trophy cabinet, such is the increasing pointlessness of the event. That being said, there were some talking points that sprang forth out of an otherwise dull evening of back-patting and teenage girls screaming for One Direction from the rafters, not least Alex Turner’s rousing acceptance speech for the Arctic Monkeys’ Best British Album award. Here’s our recap of the debacle.

The Good…

Kate Moss wearing David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust outfit

Kate Moss took to the stage to accept Bowie’s award for Best British Male, because apparently Kate Moss is at least acquaintances with anyone who’s ever picked up a guitar, and alongside her delivering Bowie’s speech on his behalf (I’ll get to that later), she also sported one of his original outfits from the Ziggy Stardust era. I’m not sure why, but it was certainly a talking point, which is all that the BRIT Awards can really hope to be at this juncture.

Alex Turner’s first speech

Following Arctic Monkeys’ win in the Best British Group category, Alex Turner succinctly told the audience: “There’s a lot of people that require thanks for this, but they need to hear their names read out as much as you need to hear another list of people you don’t know”. Thanks for sparing us, Alex.

…the Bad…

Lorde and Disclosure’s performance

‘Royals’ was one of the best yet unlikeliest pop hits of 2013, but the BRIT Awards saw her collaborate with Disclosure and turn the track into a Tiesto-esque crowd-pleaser which, judging from the performance’s Twitter reaction, actually pleased no one.

David Bowie’s acceptance speech

David Bowie used his acceptance speech for Best British Male to ask Scotland to not vote for independence. Bowie said, via Kate Moss who was reading his speech for him as he inevitably did not make an appearance at the show: “In Japanese myth the rabbits from my old costume which Kate is wearing live on the moon. Kate comes Venus and I from Mars. I’m completely delighted to have a Brit for being the Best Male but I am, aren’t I Kate? I think it’s a great way to end the day, thank you very, very much. And Scotland, stay with us.” Yeah, Scotland, listen to Bowie! Stay with us li’l ol’ English folk! Heed the advice of a man who left Britain years ago and currently resides in New York! You selfish, independent bastards, you!

Katy Perry’s Performance

Katy Perry paired her infamously tragic live vocals with a day-glo vomit explosion of neon colours and dancers awkwardly dressed as Chippendale pharaohs. 

Pharrell’s hat

He’s really committed to that thing, isn’t he?

…and Alex Turner

And here it is. The part of the BRIT Awards 2014 that everyone is talking about (which might say more about how dull the BRIT Awards are than anything else): Alex Turner’s speech regarding rock ‘n’ roll’s unwillingness to lay down and die, in which he spoke of it as if it was some form of sentient being and not the product of musicians brandishing guitars and leather jackets.

Some have said that it was an egotistical tirade and that Turner came off as a pompous twit, while others have already typed it up and slapped a photo of Turner’s quiffed head in the background before sharing it on Twitter. It’s the kind of speech that will likely make it onto posters emblazoned across the walls of University dorms, and inspire spotty 15-year-olds to pick up a guitar and start making shit, derivative music with their friends.

Not that it matters (it’s just a fucking acceptance speech, at least it was moderately interesting and not a rolling list of thank you’s to producers, families and God), but personally I found the content of his speech to be a pretty awesome two fingers up to the banality and irrelevance of the BRIT Awards, but my word did he deliver it with an almost intoxicating level of smugness.

Though Alex Turner now routinely sports the unflinchingly stony face of a young man who’s dipped his fringe in Brylcreem and therefore decided that he shouldn’t crack a smile for the next 10 years, while he was standing on that stage with his hand on his hip like a diminutive Nick Cave with a Northern accent, I felt that beneath those expressionless eyes and clenched lips he was wearing a smug smile so broad that even electric-car driving vegans would’ve deemed him a little too self-satisfied. We’re fans of humility here in the UK, and humble that was not.

In summary…

So that was the BRIT Awards 2014, folks. Still pointless. Still shit. Still raking in fewer viewing figures on a yearly basis. Still presented by comedy vacuum James Corden. I’ll see you the same time next year, then, eh?

Photos: Getty Images