Monday, 30 April 2012

Arctic Monkeys - Electricity

Over the past six years Arctic Monkeys have built up a reputation for their versatility and continuous metamorphosis of their sound with every new musical venture. Each album seemed to present a test of loyalty to separate the men from "the Mardy bum crowd", until the release of the infamous ‘Humbug’ which threw many people off the bandwagon. Not a band to crack or compromise or be unhinged by do-rights or individes, they stuck to their guns and carried on doing what they wanted, dispelling any doubts of pandering to the masses. But it turns out they’re still exactly what the masses want. The first song off their new single ‘R U Mine?’ was released with no prior warning and was greeted with resounding praise. As an avid Arctic Monkeys fan I even managed to gauge it’s success by the fact that I had people coming up to me in the corridors at college eager to inform me that “OH MY GOD I LISTENED TO R U MINE? AND IT’S AMAZING I LOVE ARCTIC MONKEYS.” 

This and the anticipation of the limited edition purple 7” for Record Store day whet appetites and the run up to the 21st of April set a tangible buzz of electricity in the air.
Setting myself up for the first listen being on my record player, I was bitterly disappointed after seeing what I deemed to be an undeserving scene kid clutching the last Arctic Monkeys and Miles Kane vinyls after a futile trek to the closest record store to me at an ungodly hour in the morning, and ended up settling (begrudgingly) for Youtube to deliver the blow.
But as always, a new Arctic Monkeys song was the antidote to any bad situation. It seems as though the Sheffield-four are untouchable once again; their new material manages to embody everything they’re about. ‘Electricity’ exposes you to the four live wires of O’Malley, Cook, Helders and Turner, and leaves you wondering how you ever lived without them; their spark casting other current bands into the shadows looking like burnt out matches. The vocals take a backseat here which is the only downside, but the relentless drums and thunder bolts of electric twangs from the guitar are enough to make up for it and as ever, seem to make the impossible, possible and create a heavy, fully loaded song sing-along-able. Breaking boundaries that you never knew existed as always, Arctic Monkeys have stood the test of time and the corporate musical conveyor belt, refusing to be moulded like play-doh, thank God they got off the bandwagon and put down the handbook, if this is love then it’s certainly neither blind nor deaf.

Bella Roach

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