Representing the UK's thriving music scene
Here’s proof if you needed any that the UK music scene is in very rude health right now. The nominees for Best British Band supported by Zig-Zag at the VO5 NME Awards 2018 are some of the most exciting, talented acts who’ve been active in the last 12 months. Each is distinctive from the other, with their own unique idiosyncrasies and winning elements. Good luck picking a winner out of this lot – it’s going to be tough.
The VO5 NME Awards 2018 takes place at London’s O2 Academy Brixton on February 14. Vote for your winners and watch the ceremony live on the night via NME Facebook.
Who?: British music's resident sonic adventurers
What have they done in the last 12 months?: Put out their third album 'Relaxer', which was even weirder than their previous efforts, but still managed to make it into the top 10 and 20 in the UK and US charts respectively.
Why do they deserve to win?: Not only was 'Relaxer' weirder, but it was also more ambitious, featuring a 30-piece string section amongst other things. Why not celebrate that?
Who?: Leicester characters and kings of the festival-ready chant.
What have they done in the last 12 months?: Oh, y'know, just scored their fifth consecutive Number One album with 'For Crying Out Loud', and headlined Reading & Leeds for a second time. NBD, basically.
Why do they deserve to win?: For starters, they'll probably throw the messiest party. Secondly, if you look past the questionable artwork, you'll find a record full of massive tunes that suggest Kasabian aren't running out of steam any time soon.
Who?: London legends who continue to surpass all expectations.
What have they done in the last 12 months?: Cemented their place as one of the most exciting and inventive bands in the country with their bold second album 'Visions Of A Life', and continued to pack as much touring as physically possible into their year, capping everything off with their biggest ever show at London's Ally Pally.
Why do they deserve to win?: Aside from always being properly brilliant and impressively hard-working, they came within a whisker of getting a Number One album for the second time in a row, and lost out to Lorde in our Albums Of The Year list. It'd be nice to see them getting the glory this time round.
Who?: Everyone's favourite pretentious pop stars.
What have they done in the last 12 months?: It's been a quieter year for The 1975, but they did headline Latitude in the summer - their first major festival headline set - and proved they have as much pulling power in the US as at home with a Stateside tour that included a triumphant, sold-out show at Madison Square Garden.
Why do they deserve to win?: Their live show on the 'I Like It When You Sleep…' tours fast became iconic, while Matty Healy is everything you could want a frontman to be - outspoken, hilarious, and smart.
Who?: Quiet types who are experts at writing heartbroken gems.
What have they done in the last 12 months?: Wowed the world again with their brilliant third album 'I See You', and set a new record for the longest run of sold-out shows at London's O2 Academy Brixton with a casual seven nights. Oh, and their live show this time round? Breath-taking.
Why do they deserve to win?: The way they married the dance influences of Jamie xx's solo project with their trademark shoegaze-y poise is deserving of all plaudits alone.
Who?: Lords of the gigantic, euphoric pop song.
What have they done in the last 12 months?: We haven't heard much from the boys this year, but what we have has been great, including their cover of Green Day's 'Basket Case' for Amazon's The Tick series, and 'World Gone Mad' for the Will Smith-starring movie Bright. And they've been busy working on their third album too. Do they ever stop?
Why do they deserve to win?: For continuously showing us new sides of the band, and continuing to act as both sweet relief and thought-provokers with their incredible 'Wild Wild World' tour.