With two trophies each, British alternative rock band Enter Shikari and veteran West Coast metal act Machine Head were the big winners tonight at the Kerrang Awards, held at the Brewery venue in East London.
Enter Shikari converted two of their four nominations, taking home the best live band and the weekly rock magazine’s “Spirit Of Independence” categories.
Machine Head won the Kerrang Icon award, and their set “The Blackening” (Roadrunner) was named best album.
American emo band My Chemical Romance took home one win from their four nods, grabbing the trophy for best international band.
Enter Shikari’s double-victory caps a remarkable rise for the band. The group — whose sound bridges metal with hardcore techno — in March issued a debut album, “Take to the Skies,” on its own Ambush Reality imprint. Their sizeable fanbase rallied behind the set, sending it into the Official U.K. Albums chart at No. 4.
The late, iconic British entrepreneur Tony Wilson was a huge supporter of the act, telling Billboard in June “they’re my favorite band in the world.”
“Take to the Skies” has shipped 100,000 units in Britain, and sold 80,000 over-the-counter, the band’s manager Ian Johnson of London-based Mythophonic Management, tells Billboard.biz.
Enter Shikari will embark on a stretch of U.S. dates beginning Aug. 31 at Houston’s Red Room, ahead of an October release for the album, Johnson says.
Also at the Kerrang Awards, Welsh rockers Lostprophets received the best British band accolade, and punk/hardcore outfit Gallows were credited as best British newcomer.
Veteran hard rockers Deftones were on hand to collect the classic songwriter gong, and Nine Inch Nails mastermind Trent Reznor graced the podium to receive the Kerrang Icon.
Hard rock legends Judas Priest were inducted into the Kerrang Hall Of Fame, the final presentation of the night. “Next year we will have been around for 40 years,” frontman Rob Halford told the audience. “There’s no botox, no plastic surgery here. We are what we are,” he quipped.
The Kerrang awards have a reputation as the booziest and least predictable celebration on the U.K.’s award program. Tonight’s event was no let-down. Early in the evening, a disgruntled Andy Williams, lead guitarist with Welsh rockers Killing For Company, destroyed a bottle on table 52, showering onlookers with glass and liquid, and wounding a woman. A large shard missed this reporter’s face by inches.
“The Kerrangs just turn into a party where everyone gets completely wasted,” Fightstar frontman Charlie Simpson tells Billboard.biz. “They’re great because you get to hang out with a lot of bands you’ve played shows with. It’s the best night of all the awards ceremonies.”