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Arctic Monkeys: Who The Fuck Are Arctic Monkeys?

Moody Monkey's fail to start own backlash

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So after all that internet file-sharing caper, some of the most exciting gigs ever, a classic album and blitzing the Number One single spot twice, for the next in a never-ending series of tricks, everyone’s favourite band are doing total commercial suicide! Following up your million-selling debut after just three months with a bunch of new shit is a surefire way of screwing the label’s business model, but if anyone tells Alex Turner this he’s going to cut out your tongue. He reveals this and much more on the title track: quite the weirdest thing they’ve ever put to tape. ‘Who The Fuck…’ begins as a pleasantly paced ‘Fake Tales…’ jangly skank thing, but Alex’s blood is up before the end of the first bridge, as he reflects on life in the eye of the storm: “You pushed my faith near being lost but we’ll stick to the guns/Don’t care if it’s marketing suicide, we won’t crack or compromise…”. And then the whole thing mutates into an unhinged gutter-goth maelstrom, with playground chanting and threats of violence to anyone deigning to tell them what to do. The cutting out tongues business. Horrible. Of the other newies, ‘Cigarette Smoker Fiona’ is ‘The View From The Afternoon’ cut and shut with Pavement; ‘No Buses’ and ‘Despair In The Departure Lounge’ both sound like ‘Riot Van’ gone calypso and recorded underwater. All songs as amazing as we’ve come to expect. But it’s that threat of mutilation before the children’s choir kicks in on ‘Who The Fuck…’ that really pushes things forward. “Bring on the backlash!” he snarls at the end. Sorry Alex, mate. You don’t get off that easily.

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