When U2 received their Godlike Geniuses award at last week's NME Carling Awards in London, the band took the chance to thank the British music weekly for support over the years.

'The thing is,' said Bono. 'We didn't have many black people in Ireland; there was one (Thin Lizzy's Phil Lynott) and he was in a heavy metal band. But we heard about black music through the NME. We heard about reggae music, we heard about lots of stuff. It was kind of like an education and for people who didn't quite have an education, the NME was ours.'

Bono said he didn't think the UK music scene would 'be as sharp without the NME' and thanked the paper for putting the band on the cover before they even had a record deal.

Edge said it was also providential having God in their band. 'I tell you, it was tough for the rest of us through the years putting up with the loaves and fishes, all that stuff. But we got through somehow, we managed by some miracle to make it here. Here we are at the beginning of the third millennium and we're here drinking free champagne at the Brat Awards, so cheers to everybody, thank you.'

As well as the award for Godlike Genius, the band also picked up a gong for Best Rock Act at the Awards, which were voted for by readers of NME and NME.COM.

Interviewed with Oasis' Noel and Liam Gallagher at the Awards, Bono (pictured above left with Liam) claimed that Oasis had raised the standard on writing tunes for which U2 were grateful.

Asked if they would like to work together, Noel replied, 'Well, we've played together.' Bono: 'We tried to kill them.'

Noel then revealed that the two bands are genetically linked.

Noel: 'To be honest I'm friends and I'm related to what I consider two of the best singers in British musical history. And I would be friends with John Lennon if he was alive and these two would be stood beside him.'

Asked if he is related to Bono, Noel replied, 'Did you not know he's my stepfather ?'

Bono: 'We used to babysit him when he was a kid. He was such trouble but he's a great lad.'

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