Album Review: Arctic Monkeys - Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino

"Alex Turner indulges us with his depth of expression and sense of journey."

After making, arguably, one of the best rock records of our time with 2013's ‘AM’, you can only applaud Alex Turner for diverting the band in a new direction...

Let's face it - it would be pretty hard to recreate the same magic. 

Instead, the Sheffield frontman enlists our ears and mind sending them to a hotel on the moon.

Suddenly we are transported into spaced-out territory, existing from the beginning to the end of the record, a vibe that may not appeal to all.

Turner indulges us with his depth of expression and sense of journey.

We get a feeling that he is removing himself from a world he’s fallen out of love with on tracks like ‘Batphone’, which includes the line, 'Have I told you about the time I got sucked into a hole by a handheld device?', and going back to simpler times, very much signalled by the stripped back, piano-led sound.

Turner has spoken of his fascination with sci-fi films and David Bowie at the time he was writing and recording the album, and those influences are clear as day.

The record doesn't stick to proper choruses and may be lacking in true melody, but it's the twist and turns in sonics that keep the listener wondering where the soundscape will go next.

Turner continues to surprise us with his lyricism, and returns to the wit and satire present on the band's debut LP, 'Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not', perhaps the only signature Arctic Monkeys feature, along with Turner's distinguished northern croon.

'Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino' sits in the shadows of Arctic Monkeys and Turner's Miles Kane side band The Last Shadow Puppets.

Whilst they may lose fans on this Marmite record, they've certainly built up intrigue as to where they'll go next, let's hope we don't have to wait five years for the follow-up. 

Rating: 7/10

For Fans Of: Pink Floyd, David Bowie, The Last Shadow Puppets

Album's highlights: 'Four Out Of Five', 'One Point Perspective', 'The Ultracheese'