Arctic Monkeys to play biggest ever gig

The band tell NME.COM about 2007 show

Arctic Monkeys are to stage their own festival next summer.

The band will play Lancashire Country Cricket Club’s Old Trafford ground on July 28.

Tickets go on sale on December 15 at 12.30pm, after that time check ticket availability and get all the latest listings from NME.COM/GIGS.

Speaking exclusively to NME.COM, drummer Matt Helders explained Arctic Monkeys were staging the show so that hopefully all their fans could get tickets to see them.

“People always say they can’t get tickets to our gigs, so hopefully there won’t be any problems this time,” he said. “We’ve got control of it, we can do what we want really.”

He added the band, who are currently putting the final touches to their second album in a Liverpool studio, had enjoyed getting their hands dirty setting up their own gig.

“We’ve always fancied the idea of having our own event. Just something where we can pick the bands and just have a day where we can do a bigger gig – so we can get away without doing arenas,” said Helders.

“It’s exciting for us doing this gig,” he added. “It reminds us we’re still in control to a certain extent. When you first start, you do everything yourself. Then it gets a bit weird when everyone’s got a job that takes over what you do, except actually playing the gig. It’s a bit weird when it’s taken away. Obviously it’s easier not to do it – I have no idea what I’m doing booking gigs and stuff – but if you can get involved and choose venues and that, that’s good.”

Arctic Monkeys are now looking at bands who will appear at the festival with them.

“We’re still thinking about who we’re going to get to play,” explained the drummer. “We don’t want anyone who will blow us off the stage, so perhaps someone we’ve seen before who we’ve always liked. We don’t want to get people who are bigger than us and try to get them to support us – that would be a bit insulting for them. It’s not like we’re going to get Oasis to support us. People we respect and like, we’ll think about it.”

Helders explained the band couldn’t play their native Sheffield because a big enough venue was not available at the time they needed it, forcing them to move the show across the Pennines.

“We looked at all sort of places in Sheffield, like parks and stuff but it was hard to find somewhere,” he said. “I think it’s more a northern gig and a southern gig we’re doing. We don’t know where in the south we’ll play yet, but it would be good to balance it out. It depends on festivals.”

The drummer added that Arctic Monkeys had yet to name their fledging festival.

“I think it’s just going to be live at Lancashire Cricket Ground,” said Helders. It ain’t much of a festival if it only happens once, but I’ll try to think of name!”