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Gorillaz triumph at MTV Awards

FRANKFURT, Germany -- Virtual band Gorillaz won two top honours at the MTV Europe Music Awards in Frankfurt, Germany.

The band, which exists in cartoon form, and is fronted by Blur's Damon Albarn, took the awards for best dance act, and best song for Clint Eastwood.

Albarn, wearing a black CND T-shirt, briefly turned the spotlight from entertainment to war when collecting his dance award.

"See this symbol," he said, pointing to the white symbol of the anti-nuclear movement on his T-shirt. "This is the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. Bombing one of the poorest countries in the world is wrong."

Britain's Robbie Williams and American Jennifer Lopez were named best singers at the awards.

American rap-rock pioneers Limp Bizkit won three awards. Britain's Craig David picked up two.

The awards were made at a glittering ceremony beamed on live television to 129 countries from Argentina to New Zealand.

Lopez, who won the best female singer award, had been expected to attend the event. But after the September 11 attacks on the United States she, and other Americans including Janet Jackson, elected to stay home.

"I'm so excited," Lopez said in a video acceptance speech from her living room. "Thank you so much for your support. I wish I could have been there."

Britain's Dido Armstrong won Best New Act. "I just know this is the best job I've ever had because I have had so many other jobs," said Dido, 29, in an interview with Reuters Television.

MTV said the show was beamed into more than 363 million homes in 139 countries on 24 MTV channels and other broadcasters.

It said the show had a potential audience of "in excess of one billion people, making it the most widely broadcast music awards event in the world."

A capacity crowd of more than 7,000 packed Frankfurt's festival hall arena for the star-studded event that was hosted by British comedian Ali G, alias Sacha Baron Cohen.

Craig David won Best R&B award and Best UK and Ireland Act. "It's nice to get some recognition," he said. "To pick up two awards and perform here, it's cool. I will give this to my mum and she can put it on the mantle."

Eminem won Best Hip Hop while Blink 182 won Best Rock. Limp Bizkit won Best Group, Best Album and Best Web site.

The Best Pop award went to American Anastacia, who made it clear at a news conference after the event that nothing could stop her from travelling abroad.

"I don't believe in fear," she said. "I don't believe in intimidation. I respect the way the other (Americans) feel. I lost half my band because people wouldn't travel. I had to hire new people. I wanted to be on stage and I wanted to perform."

The MTV Europe Music Awards also included performances from such top popular acts as Kylie Minogue, U2, R.E.M., Depeche Mode, Dido, and Atomic Kitten.

The awards are designed to honour the best musicians on the European scene. The winners were picked by an 800-member "voting academy" consisting of key record executives in the music industry and MTV viewers from across the continent.


• Limp Bizkit
• Gorillaz

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