Arctic Monkeys frontman Alex Turner made headlines with his bizarre, over-the-top acceptance speech at the BRIT awards last month. After winning the “Album Of the Year” award for his band’s album AM, Turner delivered a long-winded acceptance speech on the virtues of rock and roll and the genre’s unbeatable resilience.
Arctic Monkeys vs. Fat White Family; Who Wins?
“Yeah, that rock’n’roll, it seems like it’s faded away sometimes, but it will never die. And there’s nothing you can do about it,” said Turner, in a warning aimed at no one in particular. Despite his musings on the cyclical nature of our universe and the breaking of glass ceilings, the oddest part of the speech came at the end.
“Invoice me for the microphone if you need to,” said Turner just before he dropped said microphone on the ground and walked off stage. That must be that rock and roll stuff he was talking about, right?
Video of the speech and reaction pieces quickly flooded the internet in the following days, with the general consensus being that Turner came off a bit pompous. However, Fat White Family frontman Lias Saoudi took the criticism a little further.
In a recent interview with NME, Saoudi took Turner–and award shows in general–to task for what he called “The least rock’n’roll thing I’ve ever seen in my fucking life.”
“I hate awards shows. It’s contrary to everything I believe in as an artist and musician. I find it mildly amusing but repulsive because there’s all these insiders blowing sugar up each others arses,” said Saoudi, which was ironic since the interview took place backstage at the NME Awards where his band had won the “Philip Hall Radar Prize.”
As for Turner specifically, Saoudi added, “Words are not enough to describe how much of a fucking buffoon I think that man is. I find it unbelievable that people think of him the way they do. The guy is clearly a moron. He was talking about the universe and cyclical natures and ‘invoice me for the microphone’. What are you talking about man? You’re a fucking millionaire. His latest record, I fucking hated it.”
Just when you thought Saoudi would move on–or his publicist would intervene–he kept right on going.
“I hate that little c**t, he’s a fucking joke. It was the least rock’n’roll thing I’ve ever seen in my fucking life. His speech was horrendously embarrassing. It made me sweat, like when you see something that really makes you cringe. Massive cock. Print that.”
Coincidently, Turner himself was asked about his speech in this week’s issue of NME. Despite the overwhelmingly negative reactions to his speech, Turner stands by his message and expounded upon his intentions.
“It’s just about presenting an option that people may or may not know exists,” said Turner. “It occurred to me that in that room, or certainly watching it on TV, were people who’d never heard the term ‘rock ‘n’ roll’ other than to describe a zip on a Topman jacket.”
Turner’s impassioned defense of rock music appears to be genuine, if not misguided. Rock and roll is not dead or “hibernating,” it has simply changed, as it has constantly done throughout the years. Unfortunately for Turner, his message was overshadowed by his inflated self-importance.
There are no winners in this showdown. Saoudi was a little too heavy-handed in his criticism of Turner. His opinion of Turner reads like something a teenager spewed into a music blog’s comment section (don’t get any ideas!). Turner, on the other hand, gave one of the douchiest acceptance speeches in recent memory, and seems pretty pleased with himself. These two kind of deserve each other…
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Article by Jason Schellhardt