Arctic Monkeys- Suck It And See: Album Review

June 24, 2011 § 7 Comments

I am a huge alternative music fan, especially from British bands. I first discovered the Arctic Monkeys in 2006, and I’ve become a dedicated fan ever since. I fell in love with their witty and poppy tunes sung through heavily accented teeth; their music was always fresh and fun. After delving into a moodier vibe for their 2009 album Humbug, I anxiously waited for the Sheffield-bred band to drop a lighter album reminiscent of their debut released 5 years ago. Suck It And See, released on June 7th 2011, steps away from both sounds and experiments with an All-American 70’s-throwback sound.

The album opens up with “She’s Thunderstorms”, a track that sets the mood for the rest of the album. It is not the strongest of album openers, but it is interesting to hear a new sound coming from the indie band. The tempo speeds up with the gritty “Brick By Brick”, a song that is very rock and roll. But after a few swigs, the song could sound a bit like fellow indie band, The Kills. The first single off the album, “Don’t Sit Down ‘Cause I’ve Moved Your Chair”, is classic Arctic Monkeys. From the puzzling song title to the fuzzy Western film score-esque rhythm, this track is solid.

While the album has its great moments, most of the tracks feel like a burden to listen to. After a few listens, the melodies begin to bleed together and become distant in the back of your mind. “Reckless Serenade” tries too hard to be cynical and clever, especially with its opening line: “Topless models doing semaphor/Wave their flags as she walks by and get ignored.” Brilliant metaphors is one of the reasons why I fell in love with the band in the first place, but this line seems out-of-place.

Suck It And See is an album that weakly attempts to take the witty and fun vibe from their debut album and transforms it into a more modern and mature sound. Where is the poppy/artsy production? What happened to the up-tempo ironic songs? While I’m glad that the Arctic Monkeys stepped away from Whatever People Say, That’s What I’m Not (their debut album), I’m not too excited about this album, which sounds like the vintage-loving, less melancholic sister to Humbug. It’ll take a few more listens for the album to soak in, but Suck It And See is best served warm as it faintly spins in the background of a party that’s almost over.

Overall Rating: 3/5

Songs on Repeat

Brick By Brick

All My Own Stunts

Songs to Skip

Black Treacle

The Hellcat Spangled Shalalala

Piledriver Waltz

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