Five years after the release of Arctic Monkeys iconic AM album release in 2013, Alex Turner and co. released their long anticipated sixth studio album, Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino this May. Tranquility Base is a sharp left turn from the upbeat yet totally thrash-able sludge rock sound Arctic Monkeys fans have grown accustomed to, but it somehow manages to feel true to the group’s iconic alternative sound. It’s much more “I Wanna Be Yours” than “R U Mine.” The band’s slide into the slower vibe of sheen rock feels like a natural progression for the group. With the release of the album came the music video for the album’s sixth track, “Four Out of Five.” The visual style of the production closely echoed its sound– smooth, slow, and a little avant garde. Now, two months later, we get a visual pairing to the album’s title-bearing track, “Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino.”
The music video for TBH&C is an eerie trip into the psychedelic world of the fictional Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino (the actual Peppermill Resort in Las Vegas). Turner meanders his way around the property, stumbling up and down the halls of the hotel and aisles of the casino floor, occasionally singing into the telephone right on cue: “Mark speaking…” It’s beyond a doubt that directors Aaron Brown and Ben Chappell are fans of The Shining and 2001: A Space Odyssey director Stanley Kubrick. The one shot of Alex Turner slowly stumbling down the hotel hallway clad in only a loosely tied white bathroom is unmistakably reminiscent of Kubrick’s production design in The Shining. The color palette of the sets, props and costumes are almost like a conglomerate of Stanley Kubrick and Wes Anderson’s greatest hits, with the shaky camera operation of a low budget 90’s indie film. The four minute “Four Out of Five” follow up is exactly the visual pairing that TBH&C called for– lethargic, yet hypnotic.
Arctic Moneys is currently touring around Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino around the world, and will me making their stop in Austin for the city’s iconic Austin City Limits music festival this fall.