Australian music’s afternoon of afternoons was held yesterday. The Australian Record Industry Association (ARIA) awards ceremony clawed back a little respectability following last year’s infamously shambolic Sydney Opera House fiasco.

Channel Nine digital TV channel GO! showed highlights of the presentations and it was interesting to note how few on-air plugs aired for their upcoming The Voice talent show contest. Much of the media coverage in the run-up to the awards — when the ARIAs were allegedly struggling to find a broadcast partner after Channel TEN declined to air them this year — focused on the fact Nine were airing the awards mainly to promote their new music show.

It was the 25th anniversary of the ARIAs but – a brief montage of highlights aside – not much was made of this fact.

The big winners on the day were Boy & Bear and Gotye. The full list of winners is here.

earworm sat through the full three-hour (including ads) broadcast to “live” tweet proceedings. Award winners were modest about their achievements. It was all very nice although a little rock ‘n’ roll attitude may have been welcome.

This year, Kylie Minogue and The Wiggles were inducted into the ARIAs Hall of Fame. Prime Minister Julia Gillard turned up to present Kylie with her award. Stevie Nicks turned up to appear alongside Richard Wilkins for some strange reason.

Art vs Science stole the show (some might say for all the wrong reasons) with this performance of Magic Fountain. At least their spaceman nonsense stood out amid much sedate music elsewhere.

Once again it was hard to escape the feeling that awards ceremonies are good for industries and attendees but not much cop for television viewers’ enjoyment. Channel Nine did as well as they could with this year’s ARIAs.

Here’s Pink Wiggle Kylie and fellow Hall of Fame inductees The Wiggles singing about the big Monkey Man.


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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
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