Arctic Monkeys were damn good on the Pacific Coliseum dance floor

Arctic Monkeys and Mini Mansion at Pacific Coliseum, 10/25/2018

Arctic Monkeys @ PNE oct. 25 / 2018
Photo by Ryan Johnson

Lagers, lads and ladies packed the Pacific Coliseum on Thursday evening, eagerly awaiting Britain’s finest (and grimiest) Arctic Monkeys.

Before the Monkeys took the stage, L.A.’s MIni Mansions warmed things up. Founded by past Queens of the Stone Age band members, Mini Mansions has a slightly more psychedelic feel than Queens of the Stage Age, and they took this  to the stage. Arctic Monkey’s frontman Alex Turner was evidently too excited and joined Mini Mansion for a tune. Then the lights dimmed and Turner disappeared into the darkness.

The crowd expanded, pints were spilled, then in a flash of red the Monkeys walked on-stage looking like they were walking onto Mars. The stage was set to resemble the album art of their newest album, Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino.

Arctic Monkeys @ PNE oct. 25 / 2018
Photo by Ryan Johnson

Turner wasted no time and got into the bangers right away with “Do I Wanna Know.” Being the real proper showmen that they are, they touched on all six albums produced in the last 12 years (how has it been 12 years since Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not? That is nuts). They brought everyone back to their teenage days with “I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor,” to the embarrassingly rowdy university years with “Don’t Sit Down ‘Cause I Moved Your Chair,” and then to now … trying to be adults but still actually quite rowdy with “Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino”.

Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino is a total 180-degree turn from their previous albums, and even Turner emulated this change. Perhaps going for “a new album, new you” philosophy, Turner showed up with a shaved head, wearing a suit and sunglasses. But  beneath his sunglasses, he was still the same grungy, Sheffielder.

Arctic Monkeys @ PNE oct. 25 / 2018
Photo by Ryan Johnson

The vintage, space-agey themes of Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino were felt on stage by some Great Gatsby-esque lighting, not to mention a cameraman in a red spacesuit followed the band around for most of the show. From banger to banger, the crowd screamed for more and would not take no for an answer when it came to the encore. Echoes of “Oi, Oi, one more tune mate” reverberated around the arena. The encore was a whole lot more than just an encore. It was essentially a second set. The “Monkeys” sign lit up and they performed crowd pleaser “ R U Mine?”

Not to be corny but this show was more than “Four Stars Out of Five.” It was definitely a solid five out of five.

Arctic Monkeys @ PNE oct. 25 / 2018
Photo by Ryan Johnson