- By Mark Savage
- BBC music reporter
After 57 shows in 33 countries, the Arctic Monkeys world tour will return to the UK on Monday for stadium shows.
And anyone who’s seen them recently will know they’ve hit the stage with one of two songs: I’m Gonna Love You Just a Little More Baby by Barry White, or It’s Not Unusual by Tom Jones.
Drummer Matt Helders said: “It was like our little moment.
“Before we went backstage, we all had a little dance. We’re pretty close. We’re having a good time.”
When asked how the band chose the input music, Helders explained: “Barry White definitely got us in the mood but Tom Jones was even more, in tempo and tempo and got us hooked conclude a gig.”
It also suggests that the band laughed at Jones’ ill-fated cover of their debut single, I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor.
The Welsh singer performed a catchy cabaret version of the song at the Concert for Diana in 2007and was accused of “damaging” the original.
“We were going to release it, but the reviews were so bad that we thought it would be better to release it!” then he joked.
The Arctic Monkeys begin their UK tour at Ashton Gate Stadium in Bristol, with subsequent dates in Coventry, Manchester, Middlesborough, Norwich, Sheffield, Swansea, Southampton and London.
This being their first stadium tour in the UK, “it’s something we never thought we’d do,” said Helders.
They have tested the waters with large-scale outdoor performances in South America and Australia, but Helders says they are “still learning” the transition from smaller venues,
“We change the setup list quite a bit for different situations. But I think, once the audience has passed a certain amount of people, the feeling will be the same – about what we play, not about that experience.”
The tour was in support of the band’s seventh album, The Car, which built on the faraway orchestral vibes of their previous record, Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino.
Speaking to Radio One’s Jack Saunders last year, Helders admitted that some of the album’s complex drum patterns were “harder to play” than the “flashy” and raucous material on the band’s previous albums.
“It’s hard to do the subtleties of what happens on this record,” he confirmed. “Constrain is quite difficult – and that overflows to live [shows] too, because you might be a little excited and want to show off a little bit.
“But there were moments on set where I had to scratch that itch. We would play all the action and then relax a bit. It’s a good balance.”
The band, led by Alex Turner, will wrap up their UK tour with a third appearance at the Glastonbury Festival on Friday, June 23.