In 2009, Arctic Monkeys were busy fulfilling the latter half of ‘Bah Humbug’ but they were keen to prove that they hadn’t gone the full hog. As they wrapped up the festive half of their tour, they took to the stage in Montreal at the Métropolis, and the long-haired lads regaled the crowd with a playful rendition of the camp Christmas classic ‘Last Christmas’ with a guest vocal performance from a purring Matt Helders.
The Sheffield boys are no strangers to venturing into the poppy side of music, having delivered giggling versions of ‘Love Machine’ by Girls Aloud long in the nostalgia-inducing past. In fact, it could be argued that the chorus crafting sensibility of pop music is a key tenet to their sound as a band. Alex Turner has always had a keen eye for a singalong chorus and that also proves to be an essential ingredient for all classic drunken Christmas songs.
A year before the Humbug tour that brought us this gift-wrapped present, Matt Helders even kindly delivered fans their first (and last) “annual Christmas message”. During which he opined through a fluffy Santa beard that he was surprised that The Last Shadow Puppets didn’t record a Christmas song “because that would’ve been perfect” before struggling to sup a serving of sherry through his Santa beard and quipping “people with real beards, I’m not sure what they do”.
As it happens, neither Arctic Monkeys nor The Last Shadow Puppets are yet to take to the studio to record a Christmas song of their own, but you wouldn’t put it past the boys. After all, they are certainly not the sort to forgo novelty in favour of sustaining some sort of notion of being uber-cool, they’ve joyously proved that time and time again.
The Wham! classic from 1984 is a track that forever ranks highly in the usual top five of the 15 or so Christmas songs that we listen to over and over again each year. Hitting the number one spot in countries all over the world, the song remains one of the most heard anthems of all time. Whether Arctic Monkeys’ mash-up with ‘Fluorescent Adolescent’ is an improvement is up for argument, but there are a fair few in the comments who have swooned to the cuteness of Monkeys getting festive.
You can check out the unique Humbug-era Christmas cracker below.