Arctic Monkeys’ lead singer Alex Turner has spoken about the role that politics play in the band’s work, as well as reflect on the past controversy they became tangling in regarding a tax avoidance scheme.

The Sheffield-based group released their sixth studio album Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino just over a week ago, which raced to the top of the UK charts and became the fastest selling vinyl album in 25 years, selling 24,500 copies.

However, their huge fanbase has been split by the sonic departure of the new record from that of previous efforts, with all the songs based around the piano and with Turner’s lyrics abstractly touching on politics, society and technology.

Arctic MonkeysArctic Monkeys' lead singer Alex Turner spoke about politics in music

“[Previously] I’d never wanted anything political to get into the music and that was because I didn’t know how to do it,” Turner told The Sunday Times in a new interview about writing politically. “It’s not as though these are protest songs necessarily, but I’m more confident about putting myself across.”

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“Maybe they’re forced to be that way through the way it’s gone. I seem to remember feeling like I hadn’t given sufficient consideration to these issues to be able to discuss them, which I’m not sure is necessarily a bad attitude towards it. They often are complex.

“It can go too far the other way, where people feel forced to talk about it, but they haven’t given it too much thought. There is a pressure on you now to think about stuff, which is not unhealthy.”

Turner was also asked about the 2014 incident when the Arctic Monkeys, along with the likes of George Michael and Ant & Dec, were found to have invested in a high-profile tax avoidance scheme. The Liberty tax strategy reportedly claimed each of the four band members paid between £38,000 and £84,000 in fees to the scheme to protect £557,000 to £1.1 million, between 2005 and 2009.

“We were given some poor advice and I made a poor decision,” the singer explained. “But I always paid my taxes in full, on time.”

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