It's the home of the VO5 NME Awards 2017
Ah, O2 Academy Brixton. It’s long been the home of the NME Awards and we’ll return there on February 15. Gig-goers love it for its sloping floors (hello, being able to see no matter how far back or short you are) and it’s played host to some of the biggest bands and artists in the world over the years. It’s also a venue with a lot of history. Learn a bit more about the iconic place with these interesting facts…
The VO5 NME Awards 2017 will take place at O2 Academy Brixton on February 15. You can be there to witness all the action – get the last remaining tickets for the ceremony here.
The venue, though having stood on its site on Stockwell Road for nearly 90 years, only opened as O2 Academy Brixton in 1983. It was first used as a music venue in 1981. It was called The Fair Deal.
Simon Parkes bought the venue in 1983 for just £1. Talk about a bargain. He later wrote a book about owning and running the venue.
The venue was originally called The Astoria, just like the iconic (and now lost) venue on Charing Cross Road.
O2 Academy Brixton won the NME Award for Best Venue 12 times since 1994. That category no longer exists or we’d imagine its tally would be way higher.
The Smiths played their final gig at the venue in December 1986. It was at an Anti-Apartheid benefit that was meant to be held at Royal Albert Hall, but had to be rescheduled after Johnny Marr was in a car accident.
The Mighty Boosh hold the record for most consecutive nights played at the venue. They performed there for seven nights in a row in 2008.
Rammstein, Iron Maiden, The Clash, Deborah Harry, The Prodigy, Arcade Fire, NIN, Dylan, Hard-Fi, Sex Pistols have all played five consecutive nights there. Not quite record-breaking, but still very impressive.
There’s been a whopping 51 albums recorded at O2 Academy Brixton, including live records from Queens Of The Stone Age, Two Door Cinema Club, Jamie T, Dido and Good Charlotte.
The venue is a Grade II listed building, which means it’s here to stay. Brixton railway station and the Ritzy cinema are other local buildings with such protection.