With less than four weeks to go and the shortlisted candidates just announced, it's time to look at some of the NME Awards 2012 categories in more depth. Let's start with one of the most contested of the year, the Best New Band (supported by Boxfresh), an award previously picked up by Hurts, Bombay Bicycle Club and MGMT.

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As ever, there's five contenders, and five pretty different offerings. A recap:

[subhead]Foster The People[/subhead]
The LA threesome might be a bit clean cut and polished but there's no denying the likes of 'Pumped Up Kicks' had festival punters in their pockets like few others last summer.
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[subhead]Lana Del Rey[/subhead]
You'll be firmly on one side of the fence or the other on this one by now. Our recent infographic telling her rise recaps the story so far.

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[subhead]Tribes[/subhead]
If we were betting men, we'd put a good couple of quid on this lot scooping the prize.

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[subhead]The Vaccines[/subhead]
Then again, we'd probably save at least £2 on this lot. Here's the video that started it all, almost a year ago now.

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[subhead]Wu Lyf[/subhead]
If the award was given to the band with the most NME office airplay, this would be a dead cert.

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So, who deserves the 2012 Best New Band? And remember, you can argue here as long as you want, but the winner will be decided though fan votes over at NME.COM/awards.

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