Arctic Monkeys Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not

Arctic Monkeys Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
The meteoric rise to fame by Sheffield’s Arctic Monkeys is unlike any other in recent years. Overnight these fresh faces unwillingly became superstars in 2005 by simply handing over their demos to ecstatic file-sharers and playing rousing small gigs everywhere; their name acting like an innocuous virus moving from mouth to ear. Their hopelessly devoted fan base in the UK (now spread across the entire universe, it seems) sent their first and second singles straight to number one, and bought more copies in one day/week/month of this album than any other ever. Somehow they’ve seduced everyone willing to give them a listen, and in turn managed to deliver the year’s best debut album, without even trying as much. Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not’s title alone perfectly encapsulates the band’s unwavering D.I.Y. posturing, and yet the music couldn’t be any more accessible. Short, spiky riffs segue into funk rock breakdowns, rhythms ebb and flow with pertinent stop-start patterns, and singer Alex Turner spins stories that are even more important to the band’s pull in building a good rock’n’roll buzz than the catchy riffs. Speaking for a generation fed up with the limitations of being stuck in a small, oppressive town, Turner spews gospel that is more relevant than anything granddads like Oasis or junkie squatters like Pete Doherty ever had to say. It’s a frenzy alright, and the band — with their attention-hating, image-avoiding, indie-hugging charm — have created an album’s worth of songs that actually better the singles, and might just save us from our receding attention spans. (Domino)