Alex Turner: ‘It’s tough playing old Arctic Monkeys songs live’

Singer says band can drop older songs because new material has been so well received

Arctic Monkeys‘ Alex Turner has said he finds it hard playing some of the band’s older songs live.

In an interview with the Daily Star, Turner said: “Sometimes it’s tough to get through one of the old ones live. You know, you don’t feel like that any more.”

He went on to compare performing the same songs with telling the same joke again and again. “When you tell the same joke 600 times, you won’t hear what it is any more, but then sometimes, like, the 601st time you might see something in it you didn’t before.”

He then expressed relief that the band’s new songs had been so well received, meaning it was possible to drop older songs from their setlist. He also paid tribute to Laurence Bell, boss of their record label Domino. Turner said: “Laurence Bell was who came to sign us in the first place. He allowed us to try different things. It’s not a situation like you hear about with a label guy in the studio saying: ‘I was looking for this or that’.”

Arctic Monkeys lead the nominations for the NME Awards 2014 with Austin, Texas which take place next month. They’re up for eight awards, Best British Band, Best Live Band, Best Album, Music Moment Of The Year, Best Track, Hero Of The Year, Best Video and Best Fan Community.

The NME Awards 2014 with Austin, Texas, take place on February 26 at London’s O2 Academy Brixton. You can vote from the shortlist in 20 categories including Best Festival, Best Album, Best Live Band and Best International Band supported by Austin, Texas. See below for the full list of categories and head to NME.COM/awards to vote and for more information. Voting closes on February 21.