Critical Voices: Arctic Monkeys

April 19, 2007

Who the fuck are Arctic Monkeys was hardly an appropriate name for the Arctic Monkeys’ 2006 EP. Soon after the Monkeys gatecrashed the British and world charts with their first album Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not, they become an overnight success.

This time the Arctic Monkeys are consciously shooting for the stars with the new release, Favourite Worst Nightmare. It’s hard to follow up an album that united British and American critics in praise for their songs’ energy and honesty. However, the Monkeys have decided to stick to their tried and tested formula—small town pub stories served with a side of lead singer Alex Turner’s fast-paced vocals and a generous helping of Yorkshire aplomb.

The best track on the album is the catchy “Fluorescent Adolescent,” a tale of a past romance.

The track moves the album along after it begins to drag with “D is for Dangerous” and the rather boring “Balaclava.” The album’s last song, “505,” deserves attention, with its pleasantly mellow feel.

Favourite Worst Nightmare is more like a recurring dream for the Monkeys’ fans. It’s obvious what the Yorkshire lads do best: the album is still varied but much in the same vein as Whatever People Say. First-time listeners will get it without missing anything from the debut album. For veteran listeners, the Monkeys have not evolved as artists, banking on an album which will generate high sales, not high interest from music lovers—a disappointment after their debut‘s success.

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