Pet Shop Boys have received the award for Godlike Genius at the VO5 NME Awards 2017.
Chris Lowe and Neil Tennant were introduced on stage by Johnny Marr, who was given the honour himself in 2013. Marr said: “The winners of this award have changed pop music, over three decades, with hit after hit after hit. They brought romance, glamour, style, high art to the wonderful thing that is pop music.”
Accepting the award, Pet Shop Boys’ Neil Tennant said: “Our career has been such a huge collaboration with producers, programmers, remixers and I would just like to thank every one of them – and accept this on behalf on electronic music, dance music and shiny pop music. Thank you very much.”
The duo first met in 1981 and since have had one of the most illustrious and boundary-pushing careers in British pop music. They have scored 22 Top 10 singles and 13 Top 10 studio albums, and are cited as an influence by the likes of Lady Gaga, Brandon Flowers and more.
After collecting the award, the band took to the stage to play a career-spanning set of hits. They opened with ‘Vocal’, taken from 2013 album ‘Electric’ before moving onto ‘Sodom & Gomorrah’, ‘It’s A Sin’ and ‘Left To My Own Devices’.
“Little did I know when I started reading the NME as a child in the mid-60s, that one day we would stand here as an electronic duo getting such a magnificent award,” said Tennant, picking up the prize. They played ‘West End Girls’ and ‘Domino Dancing’ before closing on ‘Always On My Mind’.
Earlier in the night, a host of stars and musicians hit the red carpet, including Christine & the Queens, Louis Theroux, M.I.A. and Charli XCX.
Bastille opened the ceremony tonight at London’s O2 Academy Brixton with a live performance of ‘Good Grief’, which is in the running for Best Track supported by Red Stripe. It also features on their second album ‘Wild World’, which is also up for Best Album supported by HMV.
In addition to Pet Shop Boys and Bastille, Dua Lipa also performed. Wiley made a special appearance after collecting the Outstanding Contribution To Music award and the Bands4Refugees supergroup performed covers to raise funds and awareness for Help Refugees.