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It has been less than a decade since Arctic Monkeys burst into the UK music scene with their best selling album, Whatever People Say I Am That’s What I’m Not. The album made history when it became the fastest selling debut album in UK chart history, beating out previous title holders Hear’Say. Though they would eventually lose that title to Leona Lewis in 2007, Alex Turner and his fellow bandmates have claimed another title: the only indie band to have five consecutive chart toppers in the UK. The band, signed to legendary UK label Domino (home to everyone from Four Tet to Animal Collective, Franz Ferdinand to Julia Holter), have seen each of their five albums hit #1 in the charts. They are one of the few moderns bands to manage such a feat along with Oasis (seven consecutive #1s) and Keane (five consecutive #1s), but out of that group they are the only band on an indie label. AM is also the second fastest selling album of the year in the UK, being beaten only by Daft Punk’s Random Access Memory.
At this point in his career, Alex Turner has only written #1 albums; every single Arctic Monkeys album has hit the top of the charts and so did his 2008 side-project, The Last Shadow Puppets. Not only is AM a hit with the public, but the critics also adore it. The album has been nominated for the highly vaulted Mercury prize, going against David Bowie, Jon Hopkins, Foals, and a slew of other UK-based acts.
And, you know why not, they also have a massive sold out arena tour in the UK that will see them take on London’s Earls Court for two nights (20,000 capacity per night) and a hometown gig at Sheffield’s Motorpoint Arena with a record breaking 13,600 capacity (beating previous record-holders and fellow Sheffield legends, Pulp, by 300 people). Just another highlight in a whirlwind year that has also seen them headline the world’s most illustrious and respected music festival, England’s Glastonbury, for the second time. For us in America, they’ll be going on a mostly sold out theater and club tour.