Review: Arctic Monkeys stir up a dancefloor frenzy at the Ritz Ybor
An Arctic Monkeys concert is androgyny at its best. The boys in the audience swing the hair out of their puffy eyes and the girls tie up their weathered Converse for the 50th time while waiting in line to meet their future husbands/Alex Turner/any British boy in the place.
On Friday night at the Ritz Ybor, the front row was composed of drooling gentlemen jumping up and down for the drool-worthy rebel with an unknown cause, and the second row was scrunched full of girls rocking black tank tops proclaiming “Alex Turner makes my propeller spin” in glitter print.
The chatter consisted of how far people had traveled to see the show and how long they had waited to get in. The front row boys had patiently spent eight hours, and the girls in the back planned on stalking, I mean following, the band state to state for the next few weeks.
The mystery opener was Sleepy Sun, an unexpectedly great band from San Fran who looked like escapees from the Jonestown Massacre singing songs from the devil’s lair.
I never really studied Alex Turner and I still haven’t decoded his appeal, but men and women were head over grimy tennies the moment he stepped out.
The Brit band’s first song, The Fire and the Thud, proved my belief that no one on Earth really knows what he’s singing about and no one cares, because it rocks. Seven songs in and Turner decided to rip off his leather jacket and show his (shocker) plaid shirt.
Needless to say, the crowd (myself included) screamed. Turns out, he took it off at the appropriate time for My Propeller, an innocent little ditty about Turner’s “little Alex” … need I say more?
It took 20 songs and roughly two hours for everyone in the sold-out show to get their fix. The Arctic Monkeys played hits like Fluorescent Adolescent and I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor, and let the boys cool off with kinda acoustic songs.
There was the usual charming “I have no idea what you’re saying” conversations between the greasy heartthrob and the greasier crowd.
As a side note, Alex Turner won me over, and a pack of my greasy friends and I got the great opportunity to inhale his cigarette smoke outside the front of the club, while clueless fans sat patiently in the back of the club. Just shows you how fast a girl can be charmed by mystery, red doe eyes and the words “Agile Beast” written on a drum set for no apparent reason.
-- Rachel Lubitz, tb-two*. Photos: Emily Duren, tb-two*.