Sound — 8
When the Arctic Monkeys said their new album would further develop the sound of "Humbug" two words came to mind "oh bugger". I was wrong. The new album is bass heavy, dark and yet isn't a required taste (unlike a lot of music where bands change their sound, and lose their spark). The songs are all catchy and compliment eachover very well, they make very good use of textures. It sounds like they've been very carefull to only put in what works, none of the instruments get in eachovers way (as is often the case with bands with two guitarists). I'm particularly impressed with the bass work, it's far too rare to see a band actually using the bass to drive the songs forward and this album definately does that. We should force club musicians to listen to this yelling "THIS IS WHAT A BASS SHOULD SOUND LIKE". There our only two reasons I only give the sound an 8, firstly its not quite as good as favourite worst nightmate. Secondly the songs compliment eachover a bit too well, they are in many ways quite similar. When I listen to this album I think "fantastic" but can't really pick out any particular songs.
Lyrics — 7
The lyrics are very good, but that's a crap review so I'll go into more detail. The lyrics aren't fantastical, memoreable near-poetry which sum up the all important aspects of life. But this is the Arctic Monkeys, not Pink Floyd or Bob Dylan (to name a couple). The lyrics are however honest, containing gems like "I poured my aching heart into a love song, I couldn't get the hang of poetry". Like most arctic monkeys work the lyrics are down to earth and happily contain few cliche's. It feels like the songs are actually about something, rather than just being mindless drivel. They match the sound and feel of the album perfectly. However as few of the lyrics really stand out, and for "Don't Sit Down Cos I've Moved Your Chair" I'll give this a 7.
Overall Impression — 9
I loved this album the first time I heard it, I still love it now. I think this will have staying power in my memory. I suppose the title track and "Hellcat Spangled Shalalalala" well represent this album. This is much better than most of the music scene, so many of my favourite bands of today have dissapointed me with their newest efforts, but the Arctic Monkeys have redeemed themselves after the mediocrity of "Humbug". I genuingly think in 20 years rock kids will be tellings us that we're lucky, because we had arctic monkeys. Much as I envy my step-dad for having seen "The Wall" live.