Long gone are the days when debates would rage on for days and weeks at a time. The invention of the internet put an end to that but the world of online media can also start a few debates too. Namely, is there a better drummer around right now than Arctic Monkeys’ Matt Helders? Here, we explore is relentless work on the Arctic Monkeys track ‘Brianstorm’.
The isolated drum recording of the track is proof that Helders is, without doubt, one of the most talented drummers around. The song is taken from the band’s Your Favourite Worst Nightmare album and acted as the introduction to the band’s sophomore record. Often billed as ‘the tricky second record’, this was the song that put everyone quickly back in their place and hinted at Arctic Monkeys upcoming domination of the rock world.
While Alex Turner’s razor-sharp and spat like a machine gun lyrics are widely lauded as some of the best in the business, there’s one aspect of the Monkeys that can sometimes be overlooked; Matt Helders’ drumming is in a world of its own. The drummer has been a driving force of the band since it’s inception but his musicality on their most famous hits are often forgotten. In many ways, Helders is responsible for pushing the band into their constantly maturing sound.
The central figure of Brian in the aforementioned has often been wondered about with Turner saying: “I can’t remember Brian now… I don’t know if he were in my imagination or what… it’s a blank spot in my brain… I think that’s what he [Brian] wanted.”
However, he later explained in the NME that Brian had been a guy that the band had met backstage in their dressing room at a gig at Studio Coast “Ageha” in Tokyo, Japan, and that “When he left the room, we were a bit in awe of his presence. So we did a brainstorm for what he was like, drew a little picture and wrote things about him.” While guitarist Jamie Cook added: “He was right smooth, very LA. He just appeared with like a business card and like a round neck T-shirt and a tie loosely around it, I’d never seen that before. It felt like he was trying to get inside your mind. We were checking out his attire; it inspired us.”
While Turner’s lyrics work to portray the protagonist in all this splendour it is helder’s drums which punctuates every notion. On this isolated track, that power and precision are expertly demonstrated.
So, without further ado, take a listen to the pounding drums of Matt Helders on Arctic Monkeys song ‘Brianstorm’ and try and tell us he isn’t the best drummer in the world right now.