LIVE: Arctic Monkeys, The Drowners at Webster Hall (9/16/2013)
By Adam Pollock on September 20, 2013
Arctic Monkeys, The Drowners
New York City, NY
September 16, 2013
A week after the release of their chart-topping new album, AM, (their 5th in a row in the UK, a record) Sheffield’s finest, Arctic Monkeys, is storming the States, and kicked off a run of major markets with a sold-out show on Monday at New York’s Webster Hall. NYC has plenty of good venues to choose from these days and the Monkeys could have easily opted for the larger, more profitable, Terminal 5, which holds twice as many as Webster. Playing the cooler, more intimate downtown venue (and packing it to the rafters), ensured that the band would be getting a riotous reception on opening night.
The fans did not disappoint and showed up early for openers The Drowners, who warmed things up handily; by the time the lights dimmed for Mr. Turner and crew the punters were ready for a party. The Monkeys started things off with the opening track from AM, the sexy, riff heavy, “Do I Wanna Know?” As the band muscled through the song, bathed in moody red lighting, the crowd sang along, already familiar with the new material.
The boys got straight to work after that pulling out spirited crowd pleasers from throughout their decade long career. Turner is a natural showman having played much bigger stages than this for years—they headlined the Glastonbury festival this summer—and worked the crowd effortlessly. "I’m glad I wore my sparkly brown jacket for you," he commented saucily after an especially enthusiastic outburst.
The rest of the evening progressed expectedly, with the seasoned, pitch-perfect quartet building to a grand finale that left the faithful fully convinced that their Monday night was most likely going to be the highlight of the week. No doubt they'll be pulling off the same feat across the country over the next few weeks.