Arctic Monkeys – The O2 Arena – 13 Sep 2018

R U mad you missed the Arctic Monkeys comeback tour? You should be.

The Arctic Monkeys are a point of contention in the UK; people either seem to love them or hate them, or at least have an opinion on their work. For many, the Arctic Monkeys symbolise a soundtrack of a generation – with their cool riffs utilised as soundtracks in coming-of-age shows such as The Inbetweeners, the band have an air of nostalgia in every track they produce. Couple that with the Monkeys’ musical style which just radiates with 60s Britpop influence, and you’ve got a hit on your hands that resonates with both millennials and boomers alike.

Concerts held at the O2 Arena are usually held in high regard – the venue radiates positivity thanks to its friendly staff, numerous facilities, and general prestige. So, naturally, the Monkeys had extraordinary standards facing them from their fans, especially considering the mixed reception to Tranquillity Base Hotel & Casino, the latest album for the Monkeys after a long hiatus. Fans and critics alike had varied opinions about the album, which saw no singles dropped before, with WaveByte even giving it a 3/5 Bytes…



Not caring too much for the new album myself, I tried to keep my own standards and expectations realistic – perhaps due to this, or despite it, the Arctic Monkeys blew me away. Frontman Alex Turner is, without doubt, a phenomenal showman; his charisma and charm on stage are electric with the crowd charging the battery. Despite having a small amount of interaction with the crowd, when a woman flung her bra at Turner he couldn’t resist and swung it around on his finger for an entire song before flinging it back into the crowd. These sorts of interactions embody the tone and mood that Arctic Monkeys symbolise.

Even though I saw the concert from the seated area, I couldn’t help but long to be in the crowd. The entire standing section seemed to be a sea, constantly moving with different currents and waves. It’s sad to think that I’ve never been in an Arctic Monkeys crowd that collectively lose their minds during songs such as I Bet That You Look Good on the Dancefloor, but this is an experience that I look forward to with great anticipation.

Undeniably, the Arctic Monkeys continue to be one of the most talented British bands from the past number of years. Even with the prickly reviews of TBH&C, the Arctic Monkeys put on a fantastic show nonetheless. However, the concert was by no means perfect – the mixed reactions based on a song-to-song basis from the crowd coupled with minimal interaction between the band members as well as the crowd itself made the enclosed space feel as though there was a mountain between us. As much as it pains me to make this joke, the Arctic Monkeys receive a Four out of Five, from me.

4 / 5 Bytes.

Will Wilkins.


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