THURSDAY night’s Scottish Alternative Music Awards (or SAMAs) proved to be a huge celebration of underground Scottish music as seven awards were announced. Big winners of the night included Colonel Mustard & The Dijon 5 for Best Live Act and Bella and the Bear for Best Newcomer.

This year’s ceremony, held at The Garage in Glasgow, was hosted by radio DJ Jim Gellatly and featured energetic performances from Hector Bizerk, Holy Esque, Crash Club and wecamefromwolves.

Founded by Richy Muirhead, the SAMAs have been steadfast promoters of Scotland’s underground music scene for six years now.

In contrast to more glitzy annual award ceremonies, Thursday’s ceremony had more of a gig atmosphere as nominated artists mingled and moshed to a diverse array of sounds.

That’s not to say that the SAMAs didn’t boast high-profile supporters. Comedian Robert Florence, BBC broadcaster Vic Galloway and rising stars Prides all presented awards.

Prides frontman Stewart Brock was particularly ecstatic to be there. He told The National: “Anything that promotes Scottish alternative music like this deserves coverage and support. We’ve followed Richy for a few years now and it’s amazing how much work he has put into making this a success.”

With five of the categories devoted to particular genres, competition was fierce. Many acts were incredulous at their success, surprised at the sheer numbers that turned out to vote for them.

Best live act Colonel Mustard & The Dijon 5 garnered more votes than any other act in any category, beating SAY award winner Kathryn Joseph among others. The funk collective invaded the stage dressed all in yellow to accept their award.

“We were pretty surprised at the support we received, especially because of the acts we were up against,” said Colin from the band. “We’re absolutely buzzing though.”

Perth quartet wecamefromwolves were similarly complimentary to their fellow nominees. The band held off the likes of Catholic Action and Huxtable in the Best Rock/Alternative category.

“It’s an absolute pleasure to win,” said frontman Kyle Burgess. “We’re confident lads, and we knew we had a few folk up in Perth behind us, but I’m surprised Catholic Action didn’t take it to be honest.”

One of the surprises of the night came in the form of hip hop winners Spring Break. The talented Highland trio, who have been defined as folk and funk, admitted to feeling “surprised and delighted” at picking up their SAMA.

“I feel like my heart-rate can now go back to normal,” said the group’s Butterscotch. “I thought we had a relatively good chance until I saw that Mog was in the same category, at which point I burst out laughing. His body of work speaks for itself – he’s been producing music for around 10 years, whereas we’ve only been together for a year. I’m just delighted we’ve come this far.”

The Best Metal category also provided an unorthodox winner, in that they aren’t really heavy metal at all. Glasgow five-piece Divides’ anthemic sound and post-hardcore credentials saw off competition from heavier acts such as Holy Mountain and The Amorettes.

“It’s a massive award for us personally,” said vocalist Tasha Cowie. “We thought The Amorettes would take it. To be honest, we were even surprised when we heard how loud our applause was when they read the nominations out.”

Elsewhere, Bella and the Bear picked up the coveted Best Newcomer award. Much like many of the nominated artists over various categories, the male-and-female duo had only been working together for around a year.

The same can’t be said for Best Acoustic winner Sean C Kennedy who has been on an upward rise since his appearance at the 2012 London Olympics.

It was also second time lucky for Crash Club, who picked up the Best Electronic gong after being nominated last year.

The electro-rock group backed up the decision with a scintillating performance that was matched only a surprise set from hip hop titans Hector Bizerk who closed the ceremony.