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Arctic Monkeys
It seems like only yesterday that the Arctic Monkeys burst onto the scene with their debut album Whatever People Say I Am, Thatís What Iím Not. Released in January 2006, the debut from this British quartet seemed too good to be true. Four 19-year-olds writing their own songs and playing their own instruments, the Arctic Monkeys redefined the landscape of rock music with their foray into the big league.

One year later the band is back with their follow-up, Favourite Worst Nightmare, and some things havenít changed. Their debut was replete with funky song titles like I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor and Red Lights Indicate The Songs Are Secured, and the new album shows that the boys havenít lost their quirky edge. With songs like D Is For Dangerous, Balaclava and Brianstorm (no, thatís not a typo), the Arctic Monkeys are staying within the niche theyíve carved for themselves as a band that does what it wants and doesnít follow the mainstream.

But if you can tell itís the same band just by looking at the tracklisting, you might be a bit surprised by the sound. Set for release in April 2007, Favourite Worst Nightmare is a departure from the bandís unripe sound that made them so different from the other rock bands on the scene ~ and itís even better. With more drums and electric guitars, plus a heavier guitar riff and bass, Brianstorm ~ incidentally the first single ~ is an eccentric song about Brian, a ladiesí man who gets Ďtop marks for not tryingí from Alex Turner and the boys. And who is Brian, exactly? ďI canít remember Brian now,Ē Turner said at the Shockwave NME Awards. ďI donít know if he was in my imagination or what. Itís a black spot in my brain. I think thatís what he wanted.Ē

If the video is to provide any help, Brian is a buffed up poster boy with six-pack abs, a million-dollar smile, and eyes that are always hidden behind sunglasses. The video also reflects the brighter, newer sound that the Arctic Monkeys are putting forth. A troupe of female dancers perform in front of psychedelic, fast changing neon lights and ventriloquistsí dolls sing along as we barely even see the band except for energetic silhouettes on a stage performing for what looks like a brightly lit, empty auditorium.

You can read the rest of our feature on Arctic Monkeys in the April 2007 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.


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