Earlier this year, the coolest duo in music announced their long anticipated return after eight years. Their second album, Everything You’ve Come to Expect, released in April, hit number one in the UK, and was followed by a tour that encompassed much of Europe and the US. Their return to the stage has also seen them perform at festivals such as Glastonbury and Coachella.
There is a notable difference in style between their two albums. On their debut, The Age of the Understatement (2008), Alex Turner and Miles Kane experimented with an orchestral feel, taking influence from renowned composer, Ennio Morricone. However, their sophomore effort is drastically different. Notably, Turner’s vocals shift from the youthful delivery that we were used to from his early Arctic Monkeys days, to the deeper, more mature style of AM.
Turner and Kane opted for a more extravagant and almost ‘sleazy’ style, with a clear Californian feel
However, the more drastic change in The Last Shadow Puppets comes in the form of their live performances. As opposed to the British appearance of their early days, wearing suits and haircuts reminiscent of ‘60s Mods, Turner and Kane opted for a more extravagant and almost ‘sleazy’ style, with a clear Californian feel. This year, the stage has seen them emerge in tailored suits in a range of vibrant colours paired with revere collared and buttoned down shirts, whilst also sporting smoking jackets, kimonos, and the occasional necktie.
In terms of stage presence, Alex Turner’s performances are as flamboyant as his outfits. As opposed to his time with the Arctic Monkeys, it seems as though Turner is in his element when he isn’t pinned down to one spot by a guitar. He freely roams around the stage in a similar manner to Morrissey in his Smiths days. In fact, by ditching the guitar, Turner has certainly become a more traditional frontman and, as a result, seems more confident than ever. As for Miles Kane, his energy is also infectious, and his guitar playing ability continues to impress.
By ditching the guitar, Turner has certainly become a more traditional frontman and seems more confident than ever
Their latest tour has seen them cover many songs, most notably David Bowie’s ‘Moonage Daydream’. The duo’s performance of this song perfectly demonstrates all these new qualities, such as Turner’s flamboyance and strong vocal performance, in addition to Kane’s extraordinary instrumentation. Seeing and hearing Miles Kane play the solo for this song live is truly mesmerising; it was a standout moment when I saw them play at the Alexandra Palace back in July.
Recently, it has seemed as though the band’s second coming had come to an end, until they announced a new six-song EP entitled The Dream Synopsis EP, which will include two alternate recordings from Everything You’ve Come To Expect as well as four covers, to be released on 2 December. This has left fans unsure of whether the supergroup are finished for now or if they have anymore surprises.
However, I expect that Kane will continue to pursue his solo career next year, while Turner regroups with the Arctic Monkeys. The drastic change in Turner’s stage presence certainly sparks a lot of curiosity among fans regarding the style of any new Arctic Monkeys material, mainly due to what appears to be his newly f o u n d preference of performing without a guitar as a more eccentric, yet brilliant, frontman.