English rock band, Arctic Monkeys is back with their seventh studio album, The Car. Having been a fan of their album, AM–which rejuvenated the band’s career–it only made sense that I would fall in love with yet another one of their albums. I’m sure you will too.
Arctic Monkeys was formed back in 2002 in Sheffield, England. The band consists of lead singer Alex Turner, guitarist and keyboardist Jamie Cook, bassist and backing vocalist Nick O’Malley, and drummer and backing vocalist Matt Helders. Their debut album, Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not was released in 2006, and since then the band has dropped five other albums—Favourite Worst Nightmare, Humbug, Suck It and See, AM, and Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino—leading up to the release of The Car.
The band’s style has been described as indie rock, garage rock, post-punk revival, and psychedelic rock, to name a few. With the release of The Car, listeners and fans have described the album as hypnotic, mysterious, and calming due to Turner’s soothing vocals and the introduction of orchestral instruments to several tracks.
The album itself is comprised of ten songs, including songs such as “Body Paint,” “Jet Skis On The Moat,” “Big Ideas,” “Perfect Sense,” and the title track, “There’d Better Be A Mirrorball.” Each song on the album showcases a compilation of strings, synthesizers, soothing drum beats, and melancholic yet nostalgic lyrics that portray the themes of The Car.
The album takes listeners on a journey filled with feelings of love, longing, and doubt that Turner evokes in his lyrics and tone. It is simplistic and teaches listeners that “sometimes the easiest truths are the hardest ones to discover.” It also develops into a sense of mystery for the listener as they learn about a man who’s been in the public eye for the past two decades, and yet they don’t know anything personal about him.
Things are not what they seem, and nothing is concrete. The Car supports these ideals through the foreboding and uncertainty of its lyrics and tunes. In the album’s title track, “There’d Better Be A Mirrorball,” the mystery and twists and turns are clearly evoked in Turner’s lyrics, where he introduces ideas that are never finished just as simply as the mind rampantly switches topics. For example:
“There’d better be a mirrorball for me/Village coffee mornings with not long since retired spies/Lego Napoleon movie written in noble gas-filled glass tubes underlined in sparks.”
Turner’s lyrics continue to hop around from topic to topic in this jazz-infused track, clearly showcasing the several themes of what the album represents.
After listening to the album, my favorite tracks are “Body Paint,” “Big Ideas,” and “Mr Schwartz,” but trust me when I say that all the songs on The Car truly do come together as a beautiful yet sorrowful album with a cohesive storyline.