To make you look good on the dancefloor.
Almost four years on from their last live show and having announced a brand new album called ‘Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino‘, Arctic Monkeys are set to play a set of dates this summer – prompting speculation about what they’ll play. Recently we asked you which 22 songs you wanted to hear in a dream Arctic Monkeys setlist – and we’ve collected your well-chosen answers here: see what made the cut below.
A playlist featuring Arctic Monkeys
1. ‘Do I Wanna Know?’
Why it’s special: It was the first single from ‘AM’; it’s full of cracking lyrics; the opening bassline is one of the most instantly recognisable in rock history. Boom.
Key lyric: “Baby, we both know that the nights were mainly made for saying things that you can’t say tomorrow day”
Why it’s special: From their not-at-all-difficult second album ‘Favourite Worst Nightmare’, this is among Arctic Monkeys’ most energetic moments – making a perfect one-two punch after the bullish stomp of ‘DIWK?’
Key lyric: “Bet there’s hundreds of blokes that have wept ’cause you’ve stolen their / Thunder“
3. ‘Dancing Shoes’
Why it’s special: It’s literally about dancing.
Key lyric: “It’s oh so absurd for you to say the first word, so you’re waiting and waiting“
4. ‘Don’t Sit Down ‘Cause I’ve Moved Your Chair’
Why it’s special: It’s full of massive riffs and it’s about doing dangerous stuff. It’s also pretty funny.
Key lyric: “Bite the lightning, but tell me how it tastes“
5. ‘Suck It And See’
Why it’s special: It’s just absolutely lovely. Nuff said.
Key lyric: “You’re rarer than a can of dandelion and burdock – and those other girls are just Postmix lemonade“
6. ‘No. 1 Party Anthem’
Why it’s special: The gooey centre of ‘AM’ will get the lighters (or phone torches) in the air. Romantic, yeah, but also a little bit cheeky.
Key lyric: “She’s a certified mind blower / Knowing full well that I don’t / May suggest there’s somewhere from which I might know her / Just to get the ball to roll”
7. ‘Fluorescent Adolescent’
Why it’s special: This cheery story about being completely past it is like a cautionary tale: a reminder for Arctic Monkeys fans never to let their youth die.
Key lyric: “You used to get it in your fishnets / Now you only get it in your night dress”
8. ‘The View from the Afternoon’
Why it’s special: It encapsulates the way hype about a night out inevitably leads to disappointment. These rules do not apply to their summer 2018 gigs.
Key lyric: “And she won’t be surprised, and she won’t be shocked / When she’s pressed the star after she’s pressed unlock / And there’s verse and chapter sat in her inbox / And all that it says is that you’ve drank a lot”
9. ‘I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor’
Why it’s special: The first massive Arctic Monkeys song. The one that made them well famous. The one everyone knows the words to. It’s emotionally significant to a generation of indie fans. Don’t be at the bar for this one.
Key lyric: “Oh there ain’t no love / No, Montagues or Capulets / Just banging tunes and DJ sets / And dirty dancefloors and dreams of naughtiness”
10. ‘Fake Tales of San Francisco’
Why it’s special: An early demonstration of Turner’s considerable wit and wisdom, it’s the story of a shit band doing a bad job, but it’s also a banging tune.
Key lyric: “There’s a super cool band yeah / With their trilbys and their glasses of white wine / And all the weekend rock stars are in the toilets practicing their lines”
11. ‘R U Mine’
Why it’s special: The backing vocals alone are worth the price of a ticket.
Key lyric: “Great escape lost track of time and space/ She’s a silver lining climbing on my desire”
12. ‘Do Me A Favour’
Why it’s special: This ode to a broken relationship sounds like a Spaghetti Western directed by David Lynch: a veritable mood.
Key lyric: “Perhaps ‘fuck off’ might be too kind“
13. ‘From The Ritz To The Rubble’
Why it’s special: 1. It’s a banger. 2. It’s funny. 3. It’s about opportunities that arise when a night out goes south. Take note.
Key lyric: “They want arms flying everywhere and bottles as well, It’s just something to talk about, a story to tell“
Why it’s special: A neurotic post-breakup breakdown disguised as a smooth ballad and named after a counselling centre in Sheffield. It’s glorious.
Key lyric: “I’m beginning to think I imagined you all along“
15. ‘Crying Lightning’
Why it’s special: The first Josh Homme-produced single by the Sheffield boys tells the story of an intermittently charming woman over a cocky bassline and endless cymbals. Crackles with wit.
Key lyric: “I hate that little game you had called ‘Crying Lightning’“
16. ‘I Wanna Be Yours’
Why it’s special: The lyrics, adapted from a John Cooper Clarke poem, are achingly romantic.
Key lyric: “Let me be the portable heater that you’ll get cold without“
17. ‘A Certain Romance’
Why it’s special: Alex Turner casts a critical but adoring eye over his hometown of Sheffield in this closer to the band’s fiery debut – a spiky song about unconditional love.
Key lyric: “Cause over there there’s broken bones, there’s only music so that there’s new ringtones“
18. ‘Knee Socks’
Why it’s special: This song’s collection of impressionistic images builds up a picture of a winter romance marked by as much by depression as it is by the titular knee socks.
Key lyric: “You’re kissing to cut through the gloom, with a cough drop coloured tongue“
19. ‘Why’d You Only Call Me When You’re High?’
Why it’s special: Because of that unsteady bassline, depicting Turner stumbling around at 3am doing and saying regrettable things.
Key lyric: “Left you multiple missed calls, and to my message you reply: ‘Why’d you only call me when you’re high?’“
20. ‘When The Sun Goes Down’
Why it’s special: The band’s warts-and-all tale of the prostitution around their studio in Neepsend is an indie-night staple.
Key lyric: “She don’t do major credit cards, I doubt she does receipts – it’s all not quite legitimate“
21. ‘Mardy Bum’
Why it’s special: This is a petty argument transformed into a loving ballad – the musical equivalent of a cheeky, apologetic smile.
Key lyric: “I’ve seen your frown and it’s like looking down the barrel of a gun, and it goes off“
Why it’s special: One of Arctic Monkeys’ rawest songs, this initially subdued track finds Turner exploding into the final verse. A clear winner for set-closer.
Key lyric: “I crumble completely when you cry – it seems like once again you’ve had to greet me with ‘Goodbye’“