The Killers and the Arctic Monkeys, indie rockers from opposite sides of the Atlantic, took two trophies apiece Wednesday at Britain’s prestigious music-industry awards, the Brits.
Las Vegas natives The Killers, who broke out in Britain before finding success at home, were named international group of the year at the British equivalent of the Grammys. They also took the international album prize for “Sam’s Town.”
Infectious rockers the Arctic Monkeys – who released Britain’s fastest-selling debut album after building a cult Internet following – were named best British band. The Sheffield quartet also took the British album prize for “Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not.”
Amy Winehouse, a 23-year-old singer renowned for her hell-raising lifestyle and gritty, jazz-influenced vocals, was named female British act of the year. Her 2003 debut album, “Frank,” was praised for its fresh take on jazz vocals. Her second, “Back to Black” has topped British charts, and spawned the autobiographical top-10 single, “Rehab.”
Canadian songstress Nelly Furtado took the prize for international female act.
Gravel-voiced singer-songwriter James Morrison, 22, was named best male British act. The former busker topped the British album chart last year with his debut album, “Undiscovered.”
“This one’s for every singer-songwriter still playing in pubs,” he said as he accepted his award.
Justin Timberlake took the prize for best international male, while Los Angeles-based band Orson were named international breakthrough act.
Angsty rockers Muse were named best live act, while Glasgow trio the Fratellis were named British breakthrough act.
The British single prize, decided by viewers’ votes, went to “Patience” by Take That, the former 1990s boy band whose chart-topping comeback – minus original member Robbie Williams – was one of the biggest British music stories of 2006.
Oasis, who dominated Brit rock in the 1990s, received a special award for outstanding contribution to music.
The Brit Awards are run by the British Phonographic Industry Ltd., an industry association. Most winners are selected by a vote of more than 1,000 industry members, including representatives from record companies, the media, retailers, record producers, disk jockeys and promoters.