After 8 silent years from British duo The Last Shadow Puppets, their highly anticipated album Everything You’ve Come To Expect was released on April fools day. This mastering however, as fittingly as it would seem, was no sick prank.
Instead, Everything You’ve Come To Expect marks the second album for the vivacious duo since their debut offering The Age of the Understatement in 2008, and as the title cheekily suggests- it’s just as good as you’d hope for after eight years of quiet. Notoriously charismatic Arctic Monkeys frontman Alex Turner, and former frontman of The Rascals, Miles Kane, have collaborated on another polished album with a diverse sound to be reckoned with.
With the band forced to break during the Arctic Monkeys’ instantaneous rise to world fame in the last decade, the songs on ‘Everything You’ve Come To Expect’ had been written intermittently over the past few years since the conclusion of the Arctic Monkeys’ prosperous AM tour in 2014. Their elegant sound can be attributed to the album being recorded in legendary producer Rick Rubin’s studio in Malibu.
This 12-track compilation features audio tangents wavering in and out of 60s psychedelia, wicked baroque pop, and eerie orchestral strings. Just like anything else Turner has produced, his buttery vocals will tantalise your earholes and transport you into a dreamlike state. A refreshing differentiation between TLSP’s and the Arctic Monkeys is their devotion to all things lyrical, as opposed to ensuring the songs sound amiable enough to please the general masses.
Track 2 on the album, ‘Miracle Aligner’, is a cheeky tune about attraction and meaningless sexual encounters, while the lyrics are just as satisfying: “Come on Miracle aligner, go and get ‘em tiger”. It is a relatable mantra for any who have been infatuated with the allusion of attraction, exemplified in the lyric “So what’s the wish, he’ll make it come true… Simple as a line out of a Doo Wop tune”.
Another notable song on the album is ‘Sweet Dreams, TN’ a love song and all round crowd pleaser, which explores the agony one goes through in the absence of a lover. With a vibe similar to earlier Arctic Monkeys track ‘Cornerstone’, the lyrics are adorably simple: “It’s really just the pits without you baby, it’s like everyone’s a dick without you baby”.
A track that cannot go ignored is ‘The Dream Synopsis’ in which Turner permits us a tremendous peek into his subconscious. Somehow Turner has allowed us to witness a new character minus the charismatic charade we know far too well from the Arctic Monkeys, and instead presents us with an Alex Turner that is somewhat vulnerable and consequently, far more endearing. When Turner concludes “Isn’t it awful when I talk about my dreams…It must be torture when I talk about my dreams” it almost brings the entire album into question, especially given the placement of the song as one of the last on the album. However our verdict remains commending, that no Alex, it is far from awful.
With a world tour just kicking off, we can only hope that we won’t be deprived of TLSP’s music again for so long. Perhaps this is just the calm before the storm of international adoration, or maybe it is destined to remain a humble testament to the duo’s creative control after 8 years. All things considered, hopefully round 3 won’t be summoned to release in 2024 and we’ll catch more from TLSP’s before the decade is out.