Humbug - Arctic Monkeys
User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 224 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 5 out of 224

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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. 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.
  3. 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
  4. Nov 6, 2010
    10
    For all of those people who claim that the Monkeys have lost their luster have a very low appreciation for music. The Arctic Monkeys are showing a mature, artsy, pure Rock side of them that I can safely say is genius. I hope they stay on this course, but being the Monkeys fan that I am, I'm sure they can't disappoint.
    Humbug is a beautiful album, enveloped with soul and energy. I recommend
    For all of those people who claim that the Monkeys have lost their luster have a very low appreciation for music. The Arctic Monkeys are showing a mature, artsy, pure Rock side of them that I can safely say is genius. I hope they stay on this course, but being the Monkeys fan that I am, I'm sure they can't disappoint.
    Humbug is a beautiful album, enveloped with soul and energy. I recommend it to the open minded.
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  5. Nov 30, 2010
    10
    This is just a solid album throughout. I hadn't payed much attention to this band due to my fear (heh) that they'd sound like every other band out there, minus the semi-regular few that put out original and interesting music. Well I gave Humbug a shot, and after the first play through I found a couple tracks that immediately stuck, but it didn't quite stick with me, alot of the tracksThis is just a solid album throughout. I hadn't payed much attention to this band due to my fear (heh) that they'd sound like every other band out there, minus the semi-regular few that put out original and interesting music. Well I gave Humbug a shot, and after the first play through I found a couple tracks that immediately stuck, but it didn't quite stick with me, alot of the tracks sounded the same and I didn't quite like the song structure. Well it took a couple more plays through, but it's finally gotten a hold of me and it is fair to say this is one of my favourite albums in rotation curently. Expand
  6. Nov 26, 2010
    8
    Humbug is a very strange album opposed to the Arctic Monkeys predecessors. Instead of the hooky guitar riffs and Alex Turner's witty lyrics, we get a more dark, psychedelic album that you either love or you hate. As for me, I loved it. These songs are dark and have a great tune to them. The opening track "My Propeller" is a great way to start the album off with. And the second trackHumbug is a very strange album opposed to the Arctic Monkeys predecessors. Instead of the hooky guitar riffs and Alex Turner's witty lyrics, we get a more dark, psychedelic album that you either love or you hate. As for me, I loved it. These songs are dark and have a great tune to them. The opening track "My Propeller" is a great way to start the album off with. And the second track "Crying Lightning" is easily the best song on the album. You can tell throughout the album that Alex Turner's voice has matured. All In All, Humbug is a very different kind of sound from Favourite Worst Nightmare and Whatever People Say, but it's a turn for the best. B+ Expand
  7. Feb 10, 2011
    9
    For the two previous albums it is very easy to see the change to a more melodic song but this is not necessarily bad, and songs like "Secret Door" prove it. Album that easily addictive.
  8. Mar 22, 2011
    9
    This album is different. If you were expecting the same old stuff from Arctic Monkeys then you were proved very wrong with 'Humbug.' It has caused division but its a progressive album signalling that the Monkeys are maturing and delivering a more assured and darker sound than before. While some might dislike it, its a grower! And this album is the best evidence of all (if you needed anyThis album is different. If you were expecting the same old stuff from Arctic Monkeys then you were proved very wrong with 'Humbug.' It has caused division but its a progressive album signalling that the Monkeys are maturing and delivering a more assured and darker sound than before. While some might dislike it, its a grower! And this album is the best evidence of all (if you needed any more) that Alex Turner is the greatest songwriter on the planet just now. His lyrics on this album are amazing. Cornerstone is genius, and his songwriting ability is fulfilled to the maximum in particular on this and Dangerous Animals and Pretty Visitors. Don't expect any anthems aboard here just pure innovative sound of the Monkeys exploring different sounds. My Propeller is probably as close to the previous outings as you will get. Secret Door and Potion Approaching are amongst some of the best songs on the album but make no mistake the Monkeys are evolving, exploring and maturing just give Humbug the chance to shine and you wont regret it! Expand
  9. Apr 8, 2011
    9
    Excellent album, great experimentation and growth from the first two albums. Opens up a whole new area for them and expands them from being an amazing catchy witty band into a fully fledged rock band.
  10. Jun 8, 2011
    8
    A menacing, foreboding and psychedelic record, the Monkeys really show a desire to push the boundaries on Humbug (that is, if they had any). Spin it several times and you'll find it growing on you, as it doesn't replicate the hooks and melody of the first two albums, but pulls you in with the atmosphere and talented songwriting.
  11. May 28, 2011
    8
    Never has an album grown on me so much. On the first listen I was extremely disappointed, thought it seemed restrained and lacking ideas and the energy which made them such an exciting band to love. After repeat listens you realise the hidden depths that the CD has, the time signatures, the lyrical crypticness which can tug at your heart and the mature influence from Josh Homme is at timesNever has an album grown on me so much. On the first listen I was extremely disappointed, thought it seemed restrained and lacking ideas and the energy which made them such an exciting band to love. After repeat listens you realise the hidden depths that the CD has, the time signatures, the lyrical crypticness which can tug at your heart and the mature influence from Josh Homme is at times clear. What initially seemed like restraint, is actually refinement and progression. STILL, possibly their worst album. (Says it all) Expand
  12. Jun 13, 2011
    6
    I was expecting so much from this album and couldn't help but be disappointed. There are some decent tracks but as an album it just doesn't seem to come together. The first 2 albums have this quality that demands you listen to the albums over and over while Humbug just doesn't. Overall, overproduced and underwhelming.
  13. j30
    Aug 15, 2011
    9
    They haven't reached these dark territories up to this point. This was my favorite album from 2009. You can hear Josh Homme's production all over this record (which isn't a bad thing). Alex Turner's lyrics/social commentary is a revolution (he progresses every album). Can't wait to see where they go from here.
  14. Oct 20, 2011
    6
    Not all that bad an album but I have to say it was a disappointment after the class of the Arctic Monkeys first 2 albums. It's not without it's moments - Crying Lightning and Pretty Little Visitors are as good as they've produced but there are a lot of tracks on this that are dreary, dull and boring. In fairness, the band did try out a different sound here and perhaps the production is toNot all that bad an album but I have to say it was a disappointment after the class of the Arctic Monkeys first 2 albums. It's not without it's moments - Crying Lightning and Pretty Little Visitors are as good as they've produced but there are a lot of tracks on this that are dreary, dull and boring. In fairness, the band did try out a different sound here and perhaps the production is to blame for the dreary feeling of the album. The bands poorest album I think and one I'd rarely play in full any more. Expand
  15. Aug 8, 2012
    7
    For my opinion, 10 songs on one album are just too few. Even more, when half of them are soft, boring and unspectacular. As you see with "My Propeller", "Crying Lightning", "Secret Door" or "Cornerstone", they still have the ability to write good songs. Unfortunately all other songs are just fill-ins for this disappointing third creation by the impressive English indie rock band. Could'veFor my opinion, 10 songs on one album are just too few. Even more, when half of them are soft, boring and unspectacular. As you see with "My Propeller", "Crying Lightning", "Secret Door" or "Cornerstone", they still have the ability to write good songs. Unfortunately all other songs are just fill-ins for this disappointing third creation by the impressive English indie rock band. Could've been much better! Expand
  16. Nov 11, 2014
    9
    Bro at first I wasn't a massive fan of this album at first but after I listened to it a second time I thought it was great. Crying Lightning just brought this album alive.
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.