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Thursday, 27 September, 2001, 20:01 GMT 21:01 UK
Gorillaz scoop three online awards
Gorillaz
Gorillaz: Also nominated for MTV Europe Awards
Virtual band Gorillaz have won three awards at the UK Online Music Awards, held on Thursday in London.

The group, who appear as cartoon characters in their videos, took the prizes for best rock act online, artists of the year and best online design.

U2
U2: 100 million albums sold in 22 years
The webcast of Madonna's concert at the Brixton Academy in London won the top live online music event.

Veteran Irish rock band U2 were given the online pioneer prize for their efforts to cancel Third World debt, which were aided by a web site campaign.

The awards were set up in 2000 by the Music Week group to acknowledge the efforts and creativity of musicians in the online world and the creativity of music industry designers and programmers.

'Dotbomb'

"We're recognising that business on the net has gone from being a parallel activity to being something right at the heart of the music industry," Music Week editor-in-chief Ajax Scott told BBC News Online.

Gorillaz, formed by Blur frontman Damon Albarn and illustrator Jamie Hewlett, beat off competition from Atomic Kitten, Travis, U2, Victoria Beckham and Radiohead to win the artist of the year prize.

Madonna
Nine million people watched the Madonna web cast
Scott says he recognises that the digital world has "changed utterly" in the past year, "with the dotcom boom changing to dotbomb".

But he said that this had not affected the creativity of the industry.

"The business of marketing and promoting artists via the net has gone from strength to strength," he said.

The online music awards will be donating some of their proceeds to the charity Nordoff Robbins, which uses music therapy to help teach and heal the disabled.

The awards took place at Ocean - a new state-of-the-art music venue in Hackney, east London.

See also:

25 Sep 01 | Music
Gorillaz lead MTV Europe charge
03 Aug 01 | Music
Madonna cancels concert
20 Jul 01 | Music
Madonna 'retirement' denied
28 Aug 01 | Scotland
U2 make it a beautiful night
12 Aug 01 | Music
U2 offer prayer for peace
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