• Record Label: Domino
  • Release Date: Aug 25, 2009
User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 301 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 6 out of 301

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  1. Sep 1, 2013
    4
    This album feels an sounds like a quarter life crisis. Are the tunes, riffs and songwriting strong? Yes. But at the end of it all they fail to make me care or connect as a listener. A few strong tracks would have made a memorable EP, but they really couldn't afford to make yet another one of those. Yawn. Next please Monkeys.
  2. CG
    Dec 5, 2009
    9
    Arctic Monkeys continue to progress and Alex Turner continues to show that he is one of the best songwriters going at the moment.
  3. CamD
    Aug 29, 2009
    7
    As an album, it doesn't hold up too well. But there are a few select tracks that are quite strong on their own.
  4. AlC
    Sep 11, 2009
    10
    It really is a grower. My Propeller is a brilliant opener.
  5. Jan 20, 2012
    6
    'Humbug' has many strong moments ('Crying Lighning' and 'Secret Door' are some of their best) but is a much more confusing and difficult album than Arctic Monkeys are able to pull off. A very daring and dangerous move than doesn't exactly crash and burn but probably wasn't worth all the experimentation. Not dreadful but a bit on the boring side from a band who are at their best with'Humbug' has many strong moments ('Crying Lighning' and 'Secret Door' are some of their best) but is a much more confusing and difficult album than Arctic Monkeys are able to pull off. A very daring and dangerous move than doesn't exactly crash and burn but probably wasn't worth all the experimentation. Not dreadful but a bit on the boring side from a band who are at their best with energetic riffs and exciting beats that 'Humbug' doesn't really present. Expand
  6. BrianH
    Nov 13, 2009
    10
    This entire album "Makes my head pirouette!!!".
  7. WoutN.
    Nov 29, 2009
    7
    Good album, good album. Unfortunately it is less good than the first two albums. Whatever People Say was the best, good rock en pop too. Favourite Worst Nightmare was okay, but less than their first. And this one... where is the real AM? This one is too soft. Not that it's bad! No, eally it is okay... but it could been better!
  8. Tsar
    Nov 8, 2009
    7
    Well, I used to love Arctic Monkeys. And I got so excited for the release of this album. So I bought one after the release date. To be honest, I'm looking for the fast drum beats, and awesome riffs that i didn't get with this album. Favorite Worst Nightmare and their style is the best. They are quite boring this time. And sort of recreating some of The Smiths songs.
  9. danted
    Aug 27, 2009
    4
    Nothing new, nothing original, in some songs sound like nirvana, in other like prodigy, and other bands, very disappointing.
  10. drunkestepdaddad
    Aug 29, 2009
    5
    Lucky 'nuf to have caught the sonar & starland ballroom shows 1st us tour. Band sorta went south after jettisoning original bass player. Fav wurst nightmare tour at electric factory a bit of (to say the least) a letdown. here's hoping new record will grow on me, but really waiting on return of authentic line-up. Alex turner's a friggin' Shakespeare when he's onLucky 'nuf to have caught the sonar & starland ballroom shows 1st us tour. Band sorta went south after jettisoning original bass player. Fav wurst nightmare tour at electric factory a bit of (to say the least) a letdown. here's hoping new record will grow on me, but really waiting on return of authentic line-up. Alex turner's a friggin' Shakespeare when he's on about shit he knows, less engaging as dilettante. Expand
  11. Sep 14, 2011
    5
    The energy of the Monkeys have gone away in this album (and luckily came back in the following "Suck It And See") and they seem to be carrying a rock. Still, some songs as "My Propeller", "Secret Door" and "Dance Little Liar" have interesting melodies as well as lyrics. Not their best, but now we know Arctic Monkeys recovered.
  12. TiagoA
    Aug 26, 2009
    0
    I don't Like this band , they get worse and worse. This album it's ridiculous.
  13. NachoC.
    Aug 25, 2009
    3
    Like the Kings of Leon, the Arctic Monkeys lost that rebellion that fueled their inspirations and made them the unique bands that they were but now they have turned into something more along the lines of Corporate Jingles. I tried liking this album, I really did, but Humbug was just extremely disappointing.
  14. TwelveV.
    Sep 6, 2009
    9
    This is another great record, as usual takes a few listens but worth it. Could be album of the year.
  15. FredB
    Oct 16, 2009
    10
    Grown up a lot on this album with a darker and more mature sound. Each album they produce shows progression and Humbug is no different. Turner's lyrical turn of phrase is once again the highlight for this young band, and its backed up by his Shadow Puppets-esque vocal delivery. I'm looking forward to where they go next. Standout tracks: Cornerstone, Dance Little Liar, The Grown up a lot on this album with a darker and more mature sound. Each album they produce shows progression and Humbug is no different. Turner's lyrical turn of phrase is once again the highlight for this young band, and its backed up by his Shadow Puppets-esque vocal delivery. I'm looking forward to where they go next. Standout tracks: Cornerstone, Dance Little Liar, The Jeweller's Hand and excellent lead single Crying Lightning. Expand
  16. franzc
    Aug 26, 2009
    9
    Great album, it grows every time i listen it!
  17. HelenH
    Sep 1, 2009
    10
    Superb, how gobsmackingly uneasily poignant is Cornerstone!!
  18. Ramirez
    Sep 26, 2009
    6
    It's still all too dry sounding, sometimes a good idea gets raped by quite mediocre musicianship -what's with the lame ending in that uhm (dare i call it a) 'solo' during leadsingle Crying Lightning for example? But more often it's the other way round: a really mediocre melody becomes an ok song due to an inventive typically Monkeys rythm-change (remember Fake It's still all too dry sounding, sometimes a good idea gets raped by quite mediocre musicianship -what's with the lame ending in that uhm (dare i call it a) 'solo' during leadsingle Crying Lightning for example? But more often it's the other way round: a really mediocre melody becomes an ok song due to an inventive typically Monkeys rythm-change (remember Fake Tales of San Fransisco and many others? here we see it in Dance Little Liar eg). That however doesnt make the song suddenly mindblowing either, and that's exactly my problem with the Arctics. The level of mediocricity they keep reaching since their great debut. Dance Little Liar, My Propeller and Secret Door are good though. Overall, not as good as their debut but better again after the dreadful Favourite worst nightmare, just a good album nothing more nothing less. Though they should change their sound more drastically by making it more melodically, a few effects ebows etc to keep the interest in their band alive otherwise this once hyped band will quickly fade away i'm afraid... However, lyrically as always, excellent. Expand
  19. jyotirmayad.
    Sep 28, 2009
    7
    I immediately liked the pace and sound of it. ...a very smooth recording with hardly any ups or downs. ...evenly paced, it is undoubtedly influenced by the singer's other project - Last Shadow Puppets - which is a 60s shoegazer project.
  20. RobertoR
    Sep 3, 2009
    9
    Darker and more mature then the previous 2 albulms, but innovative and attractive... monkeys growing better every year!
  21. Joe
    Nov 4, 2009
    8
    Really good album, one of the best albums I've heard all year. It's a more mature release than Favorite Worst Nightmare. The music is dark and hard something you would expect from Josh Homme (Queens of the Stoneage). It'll be interesting to see where they go from here.
  22. BrynT.
    Oct 5, 2009
    6
    Not a bad album, not great either; but more importantly it was hugely unoriginal and cringinly copycat smiths-blur influences etc. at times.
  23. JordanS.
    Oct 8, 2009
    10
    This is the Arctic Monkeys best album yet and one of the best of the year. Songs like "Cornerstone", "Dangerous Animals" and "Pretty Visitors" really showcase Alex Turner's exceptional writing ability, which is the reason why I love the Monkeys. I think that anybody will be able to enjoy this, but it takes ten to fifteen listens for it to grow on you. Even so, it is most definitely This is the Arctic Monkeys best album yet and one of the best of the year. Songs like "Cornerstone", "Dangerous Animals" and "Pretty Visitors" really showcase Alex Turner's exceptional writing ability, which is the reason why I love the Monkeys. I think that anybody will be able to enjoy this, but it takes ten to fifteen listens for it to grow on you. Even so, it is most definitely worth all the time you can put into it. Expand
  24. HughTheAutomator
    Aug 25, 2009
    10
    This album needs time and commitment. If you do, you are subject to slavery. At first listened I missed the "fast" monkeys. What they lost in speed they double won it on depth.
  25. OmarC
    Aug 26, 2009
    8
    Turner remains a lyrical genius, and the music is darker and sexier than ever. It lacks an anthem, but that's easily compensated for with tracks like 'Cornerstone'. I'm not convinced that this sound will remain, but rather an example of the band looking to explore - and I rather like it.
  26. ScottM
    Aug 27, 2009
    10
    Tough to get into at first, but once it hits you its easily their best album.
  27. MateoG
    Aug 30, 2009
    9
    Definitely their best yet!!! They get even better with time, and this new sound fits them perfectly...You'll like it even more after repeating listenings....This a more mature and darker sound, with 60's psychedelic music influences ranging from The Doors, to Black Sabbath.
  28. jamesa
    Sep 1, 2009
    8
    Each album has its own style ,and heres another one very welcome to my ears! Gets better everytime i listen to it!!
  29. RickZ
    Sep 17, 2009
    8
    It takes a few listens to let it grow on you, but it sure does pay off. It is a nice thing to see the band really mature. All three albums were in a different style and I really like the direction they're heading right now. Give it a chance. Love it.
  30. DormánM.
    Sep 24, 2009
    10
    Thats the best tricky dark music.
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 26
  2. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. Since so much of Humbug is about its process, it's not always immediately accessible or pleasurable to an outside listener, nor is it quite the thickly colored freakout Homme's presence suggests.
  2. Turner’s defense mechanisms are as honed and as vicious as his rather formidable bullshit detector has proven to be in albums past, and whatever Humbug lacks in middle fingers, or even thematic continuity, it makes up for with sinister gazes and scathing ambiguities.
  3. Humbug isn't better than either of its predecessors, but it expands the group's range and makes me curious where it might go next.