August 25, 2009 - Warner Bros.
It's a cruel fact of life that everybody has to grow up. Just ask Roger Daltrey, who has to croak, "I hope I die before I get old," every night onstage, while secretly hoping that his legs don't give out on him. England's Arctic Monkeys are now on their third full-length, and they seem to be making a conscious effort to mature. Gone are the quirky, adolescent dance anthems like "I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor" and "Brianstorm," now replaced by thoughtful, introspective songs like the opener "My Propeller" and "Secret Door," a tune that displays an almost Cure-like poignancy. Not every song on Humbug hits the mark, but the Monkeys should be applauded for spreading their wings and not dropping like stones.