After gaining a cult following for their transcendent album “Fluorescent Adolescents,” indie-punk band Arctic Monkey’s fifth studio release AM lives up to the band’s rising expectations, while evolving into something more meaningful than previous albums.
Though harboring a fan base that can easily be labeled as “leather-jacket,” lead singer Alex Turner’s lyrical turn-of-phrase often results in something more evocative than his song titles might suggest. Much of what AM is built off of is not only Turner’s tactful though impulsive songwriting, but the emotional barriers he sometimes neglected in previous albums. Take this line from AM’s lead single Do I Wanna Know?, “Maybe I’m too busy being yours too fall for somebody new.” This brand of more sensitive songwriting is not exhibited in previous albums, accounting for a lot of the album’s commercial and critical achievements as well as improving on the band’s value itself. What separates AM from its predecessors is the emotional undercurrent seamlessly woven into the greaser-style sound Turner spends most of his time working on. And along with their classically indie-strummed guitar solos, Turner’s diverse (and nonetheless beautiful) vocal range and the band’s innovative song structure that’s kept listeners rapt for over a decade, AM proves to be the most haunting yet of the Monkeys’ albums.
Though some might say it clashes altogether with their slicked-back and stolid personality, the depth in which AM is built upon actually improves on the punk-rockers’ individualized sound, and with the angsty spirit that the band is renowned for playing live, there is no stopping Arctic Monkeys.