The NME Awards are like the Grammys’ cheeky British cousin. This year’s ceremony, the music publication’s 67th, was a particularly chaotic event. Taylor Swift expressed awe at the irreverence of the show and was more open than ever with her boyfriend, Joe Alwyn, while punk rapper Slowthai got into a tussle with the crowd after he was verbally reprimanded for his behavior toward Canadian comedian Katherine Ryan. Matty Healy of The 1975 celebrated a triumphant evening with his maybe-girlfriend FKA Twigs, Piers Morgan relished his status as a national villain, and both Courtney Love and Robyn took the stage to accept major awards. Here’s what you missed.
Taylor Swift Had a Big Night
Accepting the award for Best Solo Act in the World, Swift said the ceremony was “the craziest awards show” she had ever attended. Perhaps embracing the wild atmosphere, Swift cozied up with her British boyfriend, Joe Alwyn, shedding their former veneer of privacy.
Slowthai Waded into the Crowd, and some Troubling Waters
After kicking off the awards show with a performance of “Deal Wiv It” alongside fellow British artist Mura Masa, rapper Slowthai took the stage to accept the honor of Hero of the Year. During his acceptance speech, he addressed presenter and Canadian comic Katherine Ryan, saying, “Baby girl … if you want to do something, see me later … you ain’t never had anyone play with you like I’ll play with you.” Audience members responded, calling him a “misogynist,” and throwing drinks at the stage. That’s when Slowthai jumped into the crowd, attempting to spar with those who shouted at him before being kicked out of the venue. He later tweeted an apology to Ryan, asking NME to bestow the title of “Hero of the Year” to her instead. Ryan tweeted about the incident following the show, saying “He didn’t make me uncomfortable” and “defused it.” She responded to his apology, “I knew you were joking and congratulations on your very award-worthy album!”
The organizers of Record Store Day have since rescinded their invitation for Slowthai to be the U.K. ambassador for this year’s event. Their statement reads, “The individual record shops who organise Record Store Day have spoken this morning and have unanimously agreed that slowthai’s behaviour and statements do not reflect their values or those of Record Store Day.”
Piers Morgan is Everyone’s Favorite Villain
Although Slowthai may have been the real wasteman of the NME Awards, it was Piers Morgan who accepted the award for Villain of the Year. It was the second time he received the honor and, apparently, he was “delighted.”
Matty Healy and FKA Twigs Celebrated in Style
The 1975’s Matty Healy and FKA Twigs posed together after a victorious evening, following rumors that they’re dating. The two British artists both took home awards: Healy’s group won Band of the Decade, Best British Band, and the NME Award, while FKA Twigs won Best British Solo Act.
Courtney Love is a Certified Icon
Courtney Love cemented her influential status at the awards ceremony, accepting NME’s Icon Award. Clutching her trophy, shaped like a hand giving the middle finger, the singer-songwriter was characteristically candid. She confessed she didn’t prepare a speech for the honor, but she did take the moment to celebrate another milestone: 18 months of sobriety.
Call Your Girlfriend(s), Robyn is a Winner!
The Swedish pop artist was recognized for her prolific musical career, winning Songwriter of the Decade. During her speech, she gave a shoutout to some of her favorite artists, including Charli XCX and Christine and the Queens, who presented her with the award.