The Last Shadow Puppets - Everything You've Come to Expect

by Nathan Fidler Rating:6 Release Date:2016-04-01

Having left quite a large chunk of time between their debut and this follow-up, Miles Kane and Alex Turner, both respected in their own rights, have only served to crank up the expectations. It’s a good job that this album is Everything You’ve Come to Expect then, delivering more slinky, strings-driven pop.

Getting off to a good start on the sunburnt ‘Aviation’, this is two musicians at the peak of their powers letting off steam in their own fantasy version of how cool they are. Those strings on ‘The Element of Surprise’ poke at a lost pop sound, peppered with the usual Turner charm, begging “Let me know when you want your socks knocking off”.

It isn’t all sultry, fluttering eyelashes however, with Kane barking on ‘Bad Habits’ presenting himself as the Hyde to Turner’s smooth Dr Jekyll. Straddling the line between sexy and creepy is not something new for either of these musicians, ‘Dracula Teeth’ and the titular ‘Everything You’ve Come To Expect’ sounding like some kind of lush soundtrack to their very own haunted mansion experience.

‘Sweet Dreams, TN’ has Turner crooning about people being “dicks” without having his special someone around, but as much as the songs try to standalone, the album begin to feel one long ode to the strings which adorned classic movies. That’s no bad thing, it’s hot and heavy stuff, but some tracks start to meld together, making them less memorable.

As a fun experiment which we get to listen in on, The Last Shadow Puppets provide some real musicianship. But winding the album down, ‘The Dream Synopsis’ shows itself to be nothing more than an Arctic Monkeys B-side. It’s impossible not to mention the Sheffield band when discussing anything Alex Turner does, mainly because nothing comes quite as close - and that’s the overriding feeling you’re left with.

Don’t hold your breath if you’re after the new AM, but simply enjoy this odd hobby project from two industrious artists.

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