Arctic Monkeys is an English rock band formed in Sheffield in 2002. The group consists of Alex Turner (lead vocals, guitar, piano), Matt Helders (drums, vocals), Jamie Cook (guitar, keyboards), and Nick O’Malley (bass guitar, backing vocals). Former band member Andy Nicholson (bass guitar, backing vocals) left the band in 2006 shortly after their debut album was released.
They have released six studio albums: Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not (2006), Favourite Worst Nightmare (2007), Humbug (2009), Suck It and See (2011), AM (2013), and Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino (2018). Their debut album is the fastest-selling debut album by a band in UK chart history, and in 2013, Rolling Stone ranked it the 30th-greatest debut album of all time. Here are all the Arctic Monkeys albums ranked from worst to best.
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6. Favourite Worst Nightmare (2007)
“Favourite Worst Nightmare” is basically, a more mature version of the debut, produced more cleanly, with stronger recording skills and a better budget, by a band that is road-tested and better because of it. “Brainstorm” is the kind of jagged guitar pop-rock that you would expect, and sounds as good as anything on the debut. The almost funky “Fluorescent Adolescent,” about a former party girl who is dealing with growing up. The album zips by at a breath-taking 37 minutes, fast enough that the generally repetitive nature of the remaining songs might not wear you down.”
5. Suck It and See (2011)
“This album is actually quite good. If you look back over the older music most fans love the uptempo songs on Whatever People Say. I did but I secretly could not wait for the Riot Van, Mardy Bum, A Certain Romance change of pace to come on, too. On Who the F*** are the Arctic Monkeys you will find 3 slower tempo songs that were wonderful. My opinion is that the songs on this album are beautiful songs on the slower tempo side overall but what bugs me and others is the rawness of the old music is gone. These songs mainly are overproduced with that dump echo chamber sound. You have to listen past the effects but when you do you say the songs are really great. So let’s hope the Monkeys go back to the garage and get clear guitars and voices again”
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4. Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino (2018)
“I was once in the same boat as many of the reviewers here – I truly expected to hate this album. But to my surprise, what was once an unbearable, nerve-wracking wait til the finish line has quickly dissolved into one of the most pleasant stand-out albums of the year. If prior AM albums could be personified as an overly aggressive and excitable cheetah, Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino might best be described as a sleek and sophisticated panther that’s biding its time in the shadows, stalking its prey. It’s not so much that TBH&C is “better” or “worse” than the prior albums. What I’m saying here is – they’re different animals entirely. And that’s not a bad thing.”
3. Humbug (2009)
“Crying Lighting” is phenomenal. The words carve into space and time like a percussion instrument. The listener is pelted with sound, drawn and dragged into the scene. The musicianship is crisp and without distraction, and there is nothing superfluous, nothing wanting. Many times songs seem to be either music looking for the right lyric or a rhyme set to a tune; here we have a story that leaps into our heads, the lyric in perfect balance with the music.”
2. AM (2013)
“Something’s been missing lately from rock n’ roll music lately – namely smart, quality music made with guitars, drums, bass and vocals. Everything is pop and robot voices these days, which is fine but bands that play rock music are increasingly rare. That role has been filled by the Black Keys for me lately. I heard “Do I Wanna Know?” on the radio and instantly got excited, thinking it was their new album that I knew was due soon.
Then the DJ tells me no, that was the new song from Arctic Monkeys. You’re kidding right? I have and like “Whatever People Say…” but it’s hard to listen to unless you’re in a frantic, punky mood. This new song was totally different.
Next I’m hearing the catchy “Why’d You Only Call Me When You’re High” and that’s it for me, I bought it hoping it’s not an empty album with a couple catchy radio hits.
I’m glad to report it’s not. This is a solid album front to back. Decidedly lower key than “Whatever People Say…” this is a more mature effort. It’s both raw and refined at the same time somehow without being overproduced. The catchy radio songs that get your attention are replaced slowly by the more complex progressions of the rest of the tunes. It sounds like Black Keys with a little My Morning Jacket thrown in, with a British accent.”
1. Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not (2006)
“Random thoughts: This album is a great romp. It’s reminiscent of early British punk-rock; so if you like that, you’ll probably like this. I really like that you can hear their Sheffield accents when they sing. It reminds me of the music I listened to in the late 70s and 80s. They were so young when they made this album; i saw them perform on Jools Holland, pimply-faced and fantastic. They’ve got a new album out and it’s great but it’s more polished than this one; and that’s the other that thing that makes this album a good listen: no fancy production values, just rockin’.”