With five nods each, newcomers James Blunt and Kaiser Chiefs are the frontrunners heading into the Brit Awards 2006, to be held Feb. 15 at London's Earl's Court.

With five nods each, newcomers James Blunt and Kaiser Chiefs are the frontrunners heading into the Brit Awards 2006, to be held Feb. 15 at London's Earl's Court.

Singer/songwriter Blunt is nominated in the British male solo artist, British breakthrough act and pop act categories. His debut album, "Back to Bedlam" (Atlantic), is up for the British album award, while the hit single "You're Beautiful" is in the running for the British single trophy.

Alternative rock act Kaiser Chiefs (B Unique/Polydor) are in the hunt for the British group, breakthrough act, rock act and live act awards. Their first album, "Employment," is nominated in the British album category. The band was on hand to perform several songs tonight (Jan. 10) at the nominations announcement in London.

Coldplay has nominations in four categories, including British group and British album for their international chart-topping hit "X&Y" (Parlophone). American pop superstar Madonna, critically lauded Canadian band the Arcade Fire and Scottish singer/songwriter K.T. Tunstall are among a host of U.K. and international acts to garner multiple nominations.

Tunstall is up against pop singers Charlotte Church and Natasha Bedingfield and veteran songstress Kate Bush in the British female category.

Robbie Williams has a chance to extend his record total of 15 Brit Awards with a lone nomination in the British male category. Williams will compete against 2005 Mercury Prize winner Antony Hegarty (frontman of Antony and the Johnsons), former Stone Roses frontman Ian Brown, pop singer Will Young and Blunt.

Coldplay, Kaiser Chiefs, Blunt, Tunstall, Kanye West and Kelly Clarkson are the first performers confirmed for the event, and will be joined by Paul Weller, already announced as the recipient of the outstanding contribution to music award.

In the United Kingdom, Sony BMG will issue on Feb. 6 a Brits TV compilation album in the DualDisc format.

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