A.M.C wins Best DJ for his second consecutive year
Metrik wins Best Producer
Jumpin Jack Frost enters the Hall of Fame
Doc Scott is awarded the Critics’ Choice award
Waeys wins Best Newcomer – the first newcomer to win from outside the UK since 2016
Inja wins his third consecutive Best MC award
Katie Koven wins Best Vocalist, bringing in the most votes for anyone in any category
Shy FX wins Best Album
Pendulum win Best Track
Sofa Sound win Best Newcomer Label
Noisia Radio wins first ever Best Podcast award
On the night where the awards came to us in a new format with a new list of awards, we saw an incredible bunch of nominees and winners that represented a weird yet wonderful year of drum and bass. This year’s Drum&BassArena Awards, brought to us by familiar faces Jenna G and UKF editor Dave Jenkins, was a great reminder of the best of 2020.
The awards went full Zoom ahead this year with a new and adapted version of interviewing and viewer interaction. In true 2020 style, the recorded video interviews and live Zoom intervals allowed the awards to bring people together to celebrate and discuss the year from the comfort and safety of their homes. The combination of Jenna’s hosting and Dave’s interviewing meant that we got even more of a show and different perspectives on the results.
There were plentiful highlights from the night’s celebrations: Inja’s powerful and typically positive acceptance speech, Jumpin Jack Frost’s joyous surprise at his admittance to the Hall of Fame (plus a scoop on his forthcoming album) and Katie Koven’s emotional interview (featuring the first ever Drum&BassArena dog) were just a few. A.M.C’s exclusive album news was also a juicy addition, revealing his latest LP, Void, will drop next year.
As well as these highlights, there are many more interesting stories from the night. Muzz and Alix Perez both received six nominations, with both of them in the top three for best producer. BCee and Charlotte Haining also had six nominations between them, though they didn’t win anything on the night. The best newcomer category gave us the first non-UK newcomer winner since Imanu won as Signal in 2016, with second place Harriet Jaxxon becoming the first female artist to reach such a position. In fact the newcomer category actually had three female nominees for the first time which is a big statement for up and coming womxn artists! From up-and-comers to massive legends, Pendulum also made a mark on their return to the scene with their first ever Drum&BassArena Awards wins and Shy FX returned this year to win his second ever Drum&BassArena Award for Best Album.
Doc Scott joins the coveted Critic’s Choice family with his win, he follows the likes of previous winners Calibre, Amit, dBridge and Break. It wouldn’t be an awards night without mention of Hospital Records, who won their seventh consecutive best label award, and their ninth in twelve years. There’s no chance for any consecutive wins for best newcomer label, however, as you can only win it once… And this year it was Sofa Sound. They lifted the trophy after being nominated in the category for three years and was addressed with a thoughtful video from DLR who celebrated every single individual in the scene from fans to barstaff and spoke about the need for more diversity in the scene and how it’s all of our responsibility to make that happen.
As Jenna said on the night, ‘the best music comes out of the hardest times.’ With 2020 being such a difficult year for everyone involved, the awards shone a light in the darkness and proved that great things can happen in times of struggle. Artists, promoters and supporters have all united to generate some incredible art and memories, with the rise in fundraisers highlighting the heart at the centre of the scene.
All of the results (listed in order of first to third place) reflect resilience, talent and innovation this year, and the awards try to show respect to this as much as possible. No single ceremony can congratulate all those worthy in the scene, but the Drum&BassArena Awards certainly does its best to celebrate as many talented individuals as possible. You can watch the full show on the Drum&BassArena Awards here and read on for the full results:
Hall Of Fame
Jumpin Jack Frost
Camo & Krooked
Boomtown: The Lost Chapter
Let It Roll Winter 2020
Best Live Stream
Pendulum at Spitbank Fort – Pendulum
6 Deck DJ Set – A.M.C
Goat Shed x Onyx Recordings – Upgrade and T>I
Raggamuffin Reloaded – Shy FX
Without End – Alix Perez
Ex Machina – Metrik
BEST NEWCOMER LABEL
Driver – Pendulum
No Tomorrow – Camo & Krooked & Mefjus Ft. Sophie Lindinger
Independent – Halogenix
You Got Me (S.P.Y Remix) – Kings Of The Rollers
Hard Noize (Break Remix) – Dillinja
Balaclava (Skeptical Remix) – Shy FX ft. MC Spyda, D Double E & Frisco
Critical Sound – Rinse FM
Bertie Simpson – Halogenix / Dragon Force EP
Vitaliy Havrylyuk, Chris Goss & Trickartt – Metrik / Ex Machina
Markus Baga & Matt Maitland – Sub Focus & Wilkinson / Portals