Arctic Monkeys - Favourite Worst Nightmare (Vinyl)

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Favourite Worst Nightmare is the second studio album by English rock band Arctic Monkeys, released on 23 April 2007 by Domino Recording Company. Recorded in east London's Miloco Studios with producers James Ford and Mike Crossey, the album was preceded by the release of "Brianstorm" on 2 April 2007. This is the band's first album with bassist Nick O'Malley, replacing their previous bassist Andy Nicholson, who left the band before the North America tour of the band's debut studio album.

In comparison to the band's debut album Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not, the album is considered more ambitious, with ambient sounds and expanded drum rhythms being introduced. Like Arctic Monkey's debut, Favourite Worst Nightmare was a widespread critical success, with critics highlighting the band's new emotional depth and Turner's matured songwriting. NME and Uncut ranked it the second-best album of 2007, while Dutch publication OOR named it the best of 2007. In retrospect, the album is considered the start of the band's change of sound with each of their albums after their debut.

The album's title came from the lyrics to the song "D is for Dangerous", the third song featured on the album. The band said they also considered naming the album Lesbian Wednesdays.

Half of the album's songs were debuted at concerts before the release of the album. The album was recorded quickly as the band wanted to start touring and play the songs.

The album's cover art features a black-and-white photograph of a house in the Garston district of Liverpool, with colourful cartoonish images visible through its windows. This marks the second consecutive time the band used a photograph taken in Liverpool as an album cover, following their debut album Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not.

The most striking difference between the Monkeys' debut and Favourite Worst Nightmare is that this album has a much crunchier sound to it.

Sometimes it's a little harsh, as it is on Do Me a Favour, which has a conclusion that sounds like a daft version of a Killers song, written by people who think louder + faster = better. But then just two songs later there is If You Were There, Beware, which has similarly spectacular ending, but it's a bit more fuzzy and gnarly (the best example on the album of the more edgier sound) rather than just noisy. Undoubtedly, Alex Turner's vocals and the lead, rhythm, and bass guitars all have a great fuzz to them and is what I enjoyed most about the album. The production makes Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not sound like a summer-themed pop album.

The unfortunate thing is that these great sounding instruments rarely get to stand on their own, as lead, rhythm, and bass guitar pretty much all play the same riff on most of the songs (the light fifth track, Fluorescent Adolescent, probably being the first significant exception). Consequently, a lot of the songs sound like their lurching what have to be recognized as relatively simple riffs.

With this drawback in mind, it's worth saying that certain smart decisions alleviate it somewhat. A lot of the songs have groovy codas, Teddy Picker has a fantastic guitar solo (with a guitar sound that is borderline early Radiohead), and a couple of slow songs in the middle let the energy build up naturally again for the second half.

At times, the codas can feel a bit irritating. Songs like Old Yellow Bricks and Balaclava get a bit more interesting/complex right at the end, just to abruptly end. It seems like many of the tracks were still in development and sort of rushed over the finish line. If they were just developed a bit more, to the level of 505, with its sombre synths, a chorus with crunchy guitar on the left and glistening, distorted guitar on the right, then the whole work would be a lot stronger.

Either way, I thought it was a pretty strong album and the harsher sound made up for the numerous lurchy, somewhat forgettable tracks. And none of this is to mention the drumming, which is just as fantastically high-hat focussed and plays even better with the bass than on the previous album.

By: MrT503

A1 Brianstorm
A2 Teddy Picker
A3 D Is For Dangerous
A4 Balaclava
A5 Fluorescent Adolescent
A6 Only Ones Who Know
B1 Do Me A Favour
B2 This House Is A Circus
B3 If You Were There, Beware
B4 The Bad Thing
B5 Old Yellow Bricks
B6 505

Catalogue Number: WIGLP188

Record Label: Domino Records.

Includes printed inner sleeve with photos and credits.

Heavy weight vinyl.


Art Direction, Design – Juno (16)
Artwork [Spray Can Murals] – de5ign4
Illustration – Al Heighton, Anne-Marie Moore, Drew Millward, Graphique Club, Joseph Bramhall, Juno (16), Tobias*
Lacquer Cut By – Peachy (2)
Layout – Matthew Cooper (2)
Management – Geoff Barradale, Ian McAndrew
Mastered By – George Marino
Mixed By – Alan Moulder (tracks: A1, A3 to A5, B1 to B3, B6), James Ford (tracks: A2, A6, B4, B5), Mike Crossey (tracks: A2, A6, B4, B5)
Music By – Arctic Monkeys
Photography By [At Mills Media] – Matt Goodfellow
Photography By [Band] – Perou
Photography By [Booklet] – Juno (16)
Producer – James Ford, Mike Crossey
Words By – Alex Turner (tracks: A1 to A4, A6 to B4, B6)