NCIS: Los Angeles star LL Cool J returned to host the 57th Annual Grammy Awards on CBS. Nominees Sam Smith, who won four awards, Ariana Grande and Beyonce all performed. The following are reviews from TV critics around the web, compiled by B&C.
“Most of the nearly two dozen acts appeared to be after something different from the shock and awe of yore. At a time of widespread turmoil — war, racial strife, domestic violence — they wanted to connect, to offer something of themselves to viewers.”
—Mikeal Wood,Los Angeles Times
“A key component on song and record of the year 'Stay With Me,' it was no surprise that a full choir joined Sam Smith and Mary J. Blige for the performance. But that influence and the presence of choirs were turning pop, rock and dance songs into spirituals.”
—Phil Gallo, Billboard
“The performances themselves spanned such a wide stylistic and emotional range that the ultimate effect was more numbing than stimulating. By the end of the seemingly endless evening, it was as if you were walking away from a buffet feeling nauseatingly overstuffed.”
—Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter
“Bringing back memories of much more exciting MTV Awards of yore, Kanye head-faked 'pulling a Kanye,' à la his infamous, 'I'm-a let you finish' grab on then country star Taylor Swift back in 2009. These antics produced another much needed moment - pop legend Prince's epic side-eye at Kanye's gleeful gag.”
—Danielle Belton,NBC News
“Year after year, the Grammys wheel out creaky classic-rock stars in a transparently insecure 'This music is still relevant!' move. They did it again this year — AC/DC opened the show — but it was Miranda Lambert who rocked hardest, ripping through 'Little Red Wagon.' And she got bleeped, too.”
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