July 28, 2018 Washington, D.C. — The Lads from over the Atlantic are in the States again. The British group Arctic Monkeys set up shop at The Anthem in Washington, D.C. for a two-night event that began Saturday, July 28th. Their new album, “Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino”, a space-themed concept album with keyboard-driven songs that flow into one another seamlessly, showed a new side of the Sheffield boys. Lead singer Alex Turner led the charge for this new shift in the band’s sound and image. His power to draw the listener into his studio music translates well into their live shows.
The stage set up was structured and simple; the only backdrop being a curtain and a neon “MONKEYS” sign. They entered the stage to a screaming, sold-out venue and began to play “Four Out of Five”, a groove-filled “review” song from their new album. Turner took command of the stage immediately, sporting a brand new buzz-cut along with his over exaggerated facial expressions and movements. Before the show, there were many overheard conversations about what the setlist for the night would be. “Will they play any old stuff?”, referring to songs from their early albums released in 2006 and 2007, and “I wonder if they will play ________” bounced around the 7,000+ person crowd.
Arctic Monkeys came through on these wonders, playing songs such as “I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor”, “Brianstorm”, “The View From The Afternoon”, and even a rare performance of “Teddy Picker”. Many young fans trace their initial fandom of the group to their 2013 album “AM”, and Turner made sure him and the band played those song with the best of their ability. Songs such as “Do I Wanna Know”, “Arabella”, and “Why’d You Only Call Me When You’re High?” were echoed by the crowd with smiles all around. Their hit “R U Mine?” proved to be a proper ending to a marvelous evening.
Alex Turner truly knows how to connect with an audience. Whether it be by actually losing his train of thought after singing the lyrics “bear with me, man, I lost my train of thought” from the new song “One Point Perspective”, or by walking and balancing a cup of water on his head, throwing it off, and going right into a new song. When the band gave the crowd their all, the crowd was sure to give it back to them by dancing and singing along.
To those who gambled with their decision to buy a ticket to this show, they seemed to leave the “Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino” with the jackpot.
[Photos by Kyle Pettine]
[Article by Kyle Pettine]
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