Arctic Monkeys

Favourite Worst Nightmare (Domino)

Phases & Stages

Arctic Monkeys

Favourite Worst Nightmare (Domino)

Fifteen months after releasing their Mercury Prize-winning debut, Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not, a clunky, compelling, coming-of-age chapter that slums through clubs, pubs, and Sheffield, UK, burbs, the Arctic Monkeys return with Favourite Worst Nightmare, an album even sharper and more cunning than its predecessor. Opener "Brainstorm" continues the momentum of "A Certain Romance," riding the Monkey's wave of success with pummeling surf-rock rhythms and frantic time changes. "Do Me a Favor" kills at half the speed, while "Only Ones Who Know" is a slow, reverb-drenched lament on the impossibility of modern romance. New bassist Nick O'Malley deepens the grooves on "D Is for Dangerous" and "Balacava," the 21-year-old singer-songwriter lodging his tongue even further in cheek with "Teddy Picker" and "Flourescent Adolescent." Maybe it's not such a long road to the top if you're gonna rock & roll.

***.5

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