Saturday, June 11, 2011

Album Reviews: Arctic Monkeys and All Time Low

Arctic Monkeys - Suck It and See (3/5). The fourth album from British indie rock band Arctic Monkeys seems to have arrived at an awkward musical crossroads for the band. The bands last album Humbug, which attempted to drift into darker, more grittier rockier territories hit a few bum notes along the way, so it's only wise to attempt to restore a sense of familiarity with its follow-up. Suck It and See attempts to nurture a balance between the articulate, infectious, fiery rock of their glory days while dabbling with a discerning unconventional consciousness--which is where it falls flat. It's quite a middling set, however it's not without it's highlights, such as the grungy single "Don't Sit Down 'Cause I've Moved Your Chair," an obvious standout that delivers on both aphotic intensity and a thrilling wall of sound--layers of antagonized disheveled guitar chords caved over disquieting drums. Upping the intesity is "Brick By Brick" which rocks the hardest on here,"Piledriver Waltz" is tamer, but another winner--sounds like a throwback to soaring '60s rock balladry. This isn't a bad album by any means, but does highlight a distinct decline in quality. Best: Don't Sit Down 'Cause I've Moved Your Chair, Piledriver, Brick By Brick

All Time Low - Dirty Work (3/5). You know a band is ready to be introduced to a whole new mainstream audience when they start dressing up like Lady Gaga and Katy Perry in their music video. American rock band All Time Low's fourth album Dirty Work is certainly their bid for mainstream success and there is no way I could do a write up and not sound like a pretencions hipster douche, but they have indeed diluted their sound on here--none more so apparent than on lead single "I Feel Like Dancing." However, while it's more pop influenced than their last three albums, it's still a pretty solid punk/rock set and doesn't deserve the dismissive reception it's gotten so far, when there's still belters like "Guts," and the rapid drum fire of "Return the Favour." Best: Guts, Return the Favour, I Feel Like Dancing, Time Bomb

2 comments:

ww_adh said...

I think I'm going to take a pass on these. I wasn't into the last Arctic Monkeys album, and reviews for this one seem even less flattering.

J.Mensah said...

I thought you liked their last album, didn't you give it a 4 or 4.5?