Arctic Monkeys

Monqui Presents

Arctic Monkeys

Battleme

Wed, December 4

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

Roseland Theater (Portland)

Portland, Oregon

$35

Sold Out

This event is all ages

Arctic Monkeys
Arctic Monkeys
"By distilling the sounds of Franz Ferdinand, the Clash, the Strokes, and the Libertines into a hybrid of swaggering indie rock and danceable neo-punk, Arctic Monkeys became one of the U.K.'s biggest bands of the new millennium. Their meteoric rise began in 2005, when the teenagers fielded offers from major labels and drew a sold-out crowd to the London Astoria, using little more than a self-released EP as bait. Several months later, Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not became the fastest-selling debut album in British history, entrenching Arctic Monkeys in the same circle as multi-platinum acts like Oasis and Blur.

Frontman Alex Turner and guitarist Jamie Cook began their music careers in 2001, when the friends both received guitars for Christmas. Two years later, they began performing shows around their native Sheffield with drummer Matt Helders and bassist Andy Nicholson, two fellow students at Stocksbridge High School. A series of demo recordings followed, and Arctic Monkeys' audience swelled as fans circulated those recordings via the Internet. The musicians soon found themselves at the center of a growing media circus, with such outlets as BBC Radio examining the band's music and mounting hype.

By distributing their homemade material on the Internet, Arctic Monkeys were able to build a sizeable fan base without the help of a record label, effectively circumventing the usual road to superstardom. They continued to buck tradition by signing with Domino Records in 2005, eschewing a major label's help for Domino's D.I.Y. cred and hip roster (which also included Franz Ferdinand, a touchstone for the band's sound). The smart moves paid off as Arctic Monkeys' first two singles -- "I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor" and "When the Sun Goes Down" -- both topped the U.K. charts. Critical reception was similarly favorable, but few could have predicted the whirlwind success of the band's debut album, which ousted Oasis' Definitely Maybe as the fastest-selling debut in British history (a record that was broken one year later by Leona Lewis' Spirit). Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not sold 363,735 copies during its first week alone, transforming Arctic Monkeys from underground stars into mainstream figures.

Arctic Monkeys' debut sold approximately 300,000 total copies in America -- enough to warrant more media coverage, but notably less than the album's British sales during its first week alone. Nevertheless, the band's success continued as they released a spring EP, Who the F**k Are Arctic Monkeys, and prepared for a stateside tour. Temporary bassist Nick O'Malley was brought aboard for the band's American shows, while a fatigued Nicholson stayed at home. Nicholson then announced his official departure when the band returned home in June 2006, and O'Malley remained with Arctic Monkeys as a permanent member. That fall, the guys received the 2006 Mercury Prize and donated the accompanying money to an undisclosed charity. Additional accolades included Best British Breakthrough Act at the Brit Awards and Best New Band at the NME Awards. NME also made a bold assertion by deeming the band's debut one of the Top Five British albums ever released.

Released in April 2007, Favourite Worst Nightmare updated Arctic Monkeys' sound with louder instruments and faster tempos. The bandmates had recorded the sophomore album quickly, wishing to return to the road as soon as possible, and the speedy turnaround between records helped maintain the band's popularity at home. Favourite Worst Nightmare sold 85,000 copies during its first day of release, and all 12 tracks entered the Top 200 of the U.K. singles charts. As Alex Turner briefly turned his attention to a side project, the Last Shadow Puppets, Arctic Monkeys received another Mercury Prize nomination and took home two titles at the 2008 Brit Awards. Recording sessions for a third album commenced in early 2008 and lasted throughout the year, with producers James Ford (who previously worked with Turner on the Last Shadow Puppets' album) and Josh Homme (frontman of Queens of the Stone Age) adding some newfound heft to the band's sound. Meanwhile, Arctic Monkeys released a concert album entitled At the Apollo -- with accompanying video footage captured on 35mm film -- before unveiling Humbug in August 2009." - Andrew Leahey, AllMusicGuide
Battleme
Battleme
How does the story start and where will it end? Re-birth and re-discovery have been common themes to describe the inside psyche of Matt Drenik's Battleme. 3 years ago Drenik was the lead singer of Austin, TX based psyche rock band, Lions. They had just released their first record in the UK and were touring with a reunited Monster Magnet. Then he got sick. And fought. And now his solo project, Battleme, is finding its audience. It all began with a haunting cover of Neil Young's "Hey Hey, My My" for FX's Sons of Anarchy. A week after its digital release, Drenik's Battleme found itself in the Itunes Top 20 charts. A few months later, he cut a record with Ghostland Observatory's Thomas Turner and the single "Touch" premiered on MTV Buzzworthy. The Atlantic, RCRD LBL, and MTV Hive quickly featured the track and the Washington Post claimed it as being "a career maker." Within a few months of the record's release, Drenik had formed a fledging new live band in Portland, OR. First it was a KEXP in studio session, then an appearance at Seattle's Capitol Hill Block Party. A west coast tour followed with an appearance at LA's Lobster Fest. The album track "Shoot the Noise" was picked to soundtrack the upcoming EA Sports NHL 13 video game. And Battleme's first headlining Portland date was recently previewed by the Willamette Weekly as, "…a continuous string of battles and triumphs. And they're pretty damn good." This is only the beginning.

Growing up in the Cincinnati suburbs with two older brothers, Matt Drenik was always influenced by his environment. One brother was in a noise band, the other with a keen taking towards New Wave. "You had the Jesus Lizard in one room and The The in the other. I was just a kid. I didn't understand the difference between the two." While he didn't understand the differences, these would be key stepping stones in his evolution.

Battleme really began in 2009 on accident when Drenik was diagnosed with uvetis, an auto immune disease that affects the eyes of which there is no known cause or cure. At the time of his diagnosis, Matt was coming off of four years recording and touring with Lions who exploded noise and energy – touring nationally and internationally with the likes of the Toadies, Local H, and Monster Magnet. Fans gravitated towards their raucous live shows as spectacles of Drenik's heavy state of mind.

After he got sick, things began to change. "It was time to go somewhere else." He dove back in to the things he grew up on. The Stones, Flaming Lips, Beck, Townes Van Zandt went running through the walls and Drenik wrote. He turned his thoughts to songwriting. He asked himself questions

like, "what would Bob Pollard do?" This was where he gave in to a re-birth. "I wanted something different. And I didn't have anyone telling me what rules I had to go by."

Wanting a change, Drenik moved to Portland, OR in the summer of 2010. He spent the next several months recording over 40 songs in his girlfriend's basement, bending from one genre to the next. He eventually narrowed them down to an 11 song record. After burning a few CDs for friends, Thomas Turner from Ghostland Observatory got a copy and responded. Drenik thought Turner might offer him a show with Ghostland. Instead, Turner asked to produce the record and put it out on his print, Trashy Moped Recordings.

For months, the two lived and breathed the songs. They sent mixes back and forth, collaborating on every aspect of the sound. Drenik's songs took on new forms – powerful hooks, bottom heavy grooves, and ethereal textures blended effortlessly with drifting, falsetto vocals to create an adventurous mix of post-modern rock and soul that would come to define the record. Synthesizers generate "Touch." A solitary guitar builds into a wall on "Trouble." The cosmic call to kill the quiet in "Wire" gives way to the sweet satisfaction of a "Killer High." Genres coalesce, dividing lines disappear, and Battleme allows the sounds to create their own field of vision. A view from the other side. Songs with no boundaries.

And now Battleme, residing in Portland, OR is figuring out just what to do.