Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Albums Round-Up 2006 - Arctic Monkeys - Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not

Since we're well into 2006, I'm starting a recap of some of my favourite albums of the year so far. Lewis may also join in, but I reckon I'll have to ask him very nicely. Anyway, we're starting off with one of the most talked about acts of the year...

Arctic Monkeys - Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
Hideous artwork aside, chances are you'll either have bought this and loved it (me, countless other people), or avoided it like the plague and glared at anyone who dares like it (Elz, Lewis, quite a few other people). My stance on the album itself has always been it's good, yes, but nowhere near as good as your average critic appears to think it is. While lyrically it's brilliant, it falls down a little on the musical front. Sure, it's rifftastic and bouncy, but it provides little in the way of innovation and is often largely based around power chords and pentatonic noodling. The Arctic Monkeys are not the saviours of modern music, even if they are a welcome and refreshing change to the average Coldplay-esque output of the UK mainstream.

However this does not mean the album isn't incredibly enjoyable. There's no doubting the fact that the boys have a knack of creating some of the catchiest melodies around and can get the audience singing along more easily than to your average stadium anthem. Album highlights include both UK number one singles (which if you don't know already - where have you been?) alongside the bass-led 'Dancing Shoes' and, surprisingly, the Monkeys' quieter moments as showcased on 'Riot Van' and the wonderful 'Mardy Bum'.