The ‘tricky second record’ is a legendary curse that suggests the album after the debut is always the toughest to get right. Arctic Monkeys quickly put that hoodoo to bed when they released the acclaimed record Favourite Worst Nightmare.
By the end of 2007, Arctic Monkeys would be the hottest band on the planet. Fact. The year would see the band achieve a second number one album with FWN while their debut record Whatever People Say I Am That’s What I’m Not picked up the Mercury Music award. They’d even headline the greatest festival in the world, Glastonbury, likely achieving all their dreams in a single performance.
But the band were still subjected to the odd nightmare or two. It’s a path that the NME couldn’t help but walk down in a 2007 interview, as they asked what were Alex Turner, Jamie Cook, Matt Helders, and Nick O’Malley’s ‘favourite worst nightmares’—and they’re all inspired by Hollywood.
Clearly, the band were on a DVD (remember them?) binge during the hectic nights of recording the album as all but Jamie offer up a scenario which would see them star in their very own action dramas. Jamie, on the other hand, was a little bit bluer.
The guitarist revealed that his favourite worst nightmare would see him star in a porno, much to his displeasure. Bassist Nick O’Malley answers (in perfect Yorkshire drawl, even down on the page) with Bruce Willis cast as his father, “I have this one where Bruce Willis were my dad, people were trying to kill him and I had to protect him.”
Matt Helders also finds himself inspired by Hollywood, namely Sofia Coppola’s Lost In Translation, “It would be jumping off a high building. When we were in Japan we went to Park Hyatt Tokyo where Lost In Translation were filmed and I was looking out of the window thinking, ‘I’d love to jump off a building but I wouldn’t want to die’.”
Finally, Alex Turner reveals his literal interpretation of ‘favourite worst nightmare’ as he details an encounter with Sin City star Jessica Alba. “We had this one where Jessica Alba was chasing after you but she’s a vampire,” he revealed. “So it’s a laugh but then she gets you so you’re like, ‘Shit!’ But then you’re vampire friends and you roam together.”
Roaming together with a vampire Jessica Alba for all eternity. Yep, that sounds awful. Watch below Arctic Monkeys’ stunning headline slot at Glastonbury just a few weeks after this interview.