|Suck It And See was released June 7, 2011 on Domino Records.|
Perhaps the most frustrating part about Suck It And See is the fact that it COULD represent an excellent new stylistic direction for the crew if they could just get it together. A few of the album's musical highlights (i.e. "Brick by Brick", "Don't Sit Down 'Cause I've Moved Your Chair") are brilliantly composed and heavy enough to rattle ribcages, but are couple with lyrics that are either nonsensical, bland, or just plain awful. For example, on the aforementioned "Don't Sit Down...", Turner croons. "Bite the lightning and tell me how it tastes, kung-fu fighting on your roller skates. Do the macarena in the devil's lair, just don't sit down 'cause I've moved your chair." Did you just cringe? Because I did when I typed it out. Not to say there are no amazing lyrics this time around; some of the verses on Suck It And See are Alex Turner's absolute best, but when they are the music backing them is humdrum (to see what I mean, check out "Reckless Serenade" or "Love is a Laserquest"). It's as though the band can't put two and two together to give us what we've really come to hear. There are a few numbers that come close to achieving this balance, but the album as a whole seems like a lot of wasted potential and leaves the listener feeling cheated.
I am not, by any means, saying that Suck It And See is a bad album. It's a hell of a lot better than Humbug, and the standout moments are exceptional. Songs like "Love is a Laserquest" and "All My Own Stunts" beg for repeat listenings, and the last track on the album is nothing short of extraordinary. I just wish that it were able to come together into a cohesive package like an Arctic Monkeys album ought to be. It does, however, fill me with hope for the next album. Perhaps the Monkeys are just growing into a new style, but until they settle into it, they'll just leave us wanting more. Still, the album is worth a listen, and fans of Turner's solo work will feel right at home.
Standout Tracks: Love is a Laserquest, All My Own Stunts, That's Where You're Wrong