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UPDATED 03/28/2011 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 03/28/2011 at 01:00 AM EDT

The New Alt-Rock Renaissance

Alt-rock fans all over the world must have been doing a happy slam dance when Arcade Fire won the Album of the Year Grammy in February for The Suburbs, beating out the far more mainstream bunch of Eminem, Lady Antebellum, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry. This was something no real alt-rock band had done before-not R.E.M., not Radiohead, not Coldplay. They weren't the only ones getting props at the Grammys: Muse and the Black Keys scored wins for their most recent-and biggest-selling-albums, while Best New Artist nominations and prime performance spots went to breakout acts Mumford & Sons and Florence + the Machine. Then the latter's Florence Welch gets to sing at the freakin' Oscars! Throw in Vampire Weekend, and it's looking like alt-rock is taking over the planet.

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