The Vaccines discuss ‘surreal’ Brit Awards nomination

The band also talk about the 'shock' of Laura Marling winning a gong last year

The Vaccines have spoken to NME following news of their Brit Awards 2012 nomination for Best Breakthrough Act, for which they’ll be going up against Ed Sheeran, Anna Calvi, Emeli Sande and Jessie J on February 21.

Frontman Justin Young said the nomination was ‘surreal’. He explained: “It’s quite surreal really. Admittedly we are a pop band, but we’re still rock’n’roll. We’re from an alternative background, so it’s nice to be recognised in a mainstream, commercial awards ceremony.”

Young added that he was ‘shocked’ when his old touring partner Laura Marling won the gong for Best Female last year, but feels the fact that she was nominated again in the same category means that the Brit Awards are becoming more open to alternative acts. He said:

It really shocked me when Laura won last year, but when I saw that she was nominated again this year, I was like, ‘that’s awesome’ – it wasn’t just a token thing last year.

The frontman took the time to praise Anna Calvi, who is nominated in the same category as The Vaccines. “I really like Anna Calvi, she’s a great guitarist,” he said. “Really nice melodies, quite haunting melodies. When I hear them I’m like, I really wish I’d come up with that!”

He also spoke about Bon Iver‘s Justin Vernon, who is up for Best International Male: “I really like the second Bon Iver record,” he said. “It’s very self-indulgent. It’s uncompromising, but it still connected with people, which is kind of the aim of every musician, well, every self-respecting musician.”

When it comes to winner predictions, The Vaccines‘ guitarist Freddie Cowan said: “Adele will take all of the ones that she’s nominated for and Ed Sheeran will take all of the ones he’s nominated for… I think Adele‘s a valid, genuine artist, and she’s smashed it.”

Sheeran is up for a total of four Brits Awards, scoring nods for Best British Male Solo Artist, Best British Album Of The Year, Best British Breakthrough Act and Best Single. Adele is nominated for Best British Album Of The Year, Best Single and Best British Female.

Visit for the full list of nominees.

The Brit Awards will take place at London’s O2 Arena on February 21. Blur will receive the Outstanding Contribution To Music award at the 2012 event.