LOS ANGELES – Lady Antebellum was the big winner at the Grammys with five awards, including record and song of the year for the band’s yearning crossover ballad “Need You Now,” but rockers Arcade Fire won Sunday’s biggest prize, album of the year, for their highly acclaimed “The Suburbs.”

Arcade Fire’s Win Butler was visibly stunned as the group accepted their trophy and then quickly rushed to perform the last song of the night.

Eminem perhaps had reason to be stunned as well. Though nominated for a leading 10 awards, including record, song, and album of the year, he took home just two – both in the rap categories, for best album and solo performance. It was the third time Eminem lost in the category, despite a critically acclaimed work that marked his resurgence after a time out for recovery from a prescription drug addiction.

While Arcade Fire’s win was a surprise, it wasn’t totally unexpected, as “The Suburbs” dominated many critic’s best-of lists of 2010. The true upset, however, came as Esperanza Spalding – a jazz bassist and singer who sold a fraction of Justin Bieber’s music and is perhaps best identified by her voluminous Afro – beat the perfectly coifed 16-year-old pop phenomenon, and also Florence & the Machine, Mumford & Sons and Drake for best new artist.

“I take this honor to heart so sincerely and I’ll do my damnedest to make great music for all of you. It’s such an honor and God bless,” said a shocked Spalding, who released her third album, “The Chamber Music Society,” last year.

While Bieber-nation was in an uproar, the teen sensation himself was cheerful backstage after the loss – perhaps assuaged by the fact that he’s sold millions and owns the nation’s No. 2 movie with his documentary “Never Say Never.”

The evening’s other top winners included Jay-Z, John Legend, and Lady Gaga, who each had three trophies; Muse, who won best rock album; and Train, whose “Hey, Soul Sister (Live),” one of the year’s top songs, captured best pop performance by a duo or group with vocals.

Lady Antebellum’s wins mark the second straight year a country crossover act was the night’s top story; Last year, Taylor Swift captured best album among her wins.

The Grammys give out 109 awards – but most of those are doled out before the live telecast in a ceremony before the CBS show. Instead of focusing on the awards, the Grammy show emphasized performances for the year’s most celebrated artists, along with emerging acts and true legends.