Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not

Music review by
Kathi Kamen Goldmark, Common Sense Media
Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not Music Poster Image
Edgy poetry with a fresh sound. Teens and up.

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 8 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

Honest portrayal of young men's machismo.


References to rumble-type violence and street fighting.


A little bit of innuendo, one reference to prostitution.


A light sprinkling of four-letter words.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Some references to underage drinking. Cover art glorifies cigarettes.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that there is some "wanna take it outside?" bad-boy posturing and there are references to drinking and fighting. The cover art features a man smoking.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bytheemeraldgolem/ August 1, 2015

It's your choice.

Yes this song talks dirty but its about if you like the tune. I like the tune so I made the choice to listen to it.
Parent of a 12-year-old Written by301TheAmazingSo... April 2, 2011

Wonderful indie/punk music!

The best CD of 2006. Original, fresh, fun, catchy... this album does so many things right! Great for kids/teens who love indie rock.
Teen, 15 years old Written bykxaly May 31, 2014

Favorite Band of All Time!

I love this band so freaking much! They have a great sound and great lyrics. Common Sense doesn't have a review for their newest album 'AM'. So I... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written bylemnhead December 26, 2020

My All Time Favorite

This band has beautifully written lyrics and amazing songs to go with that. There are mentions of some more adult things but they are not often. There is some s... Continue reading

What's the story?

Imagine references to Shakespeare combined with \"let's get drunk and take it outside\" bad-boy posturing, sung over imaginative punk-infused instrumental tracks? In fact, that's exactly what UK sensation the Arctic Monkeys delivers in spades on WHATEVER PEOPLE SAY I AM, THAT'S WHAT I'M NOT. The singing and playing on this CD are terrific and the production is excellent. But the real star is the songwriting: Edgy poetry about the real-life concerns of wild young men comes off as honest, unpretentious storytelling.\"No time for Montagues or Capulets/Just banging tunes and DJ sets,\" in \"Dancefloor\" is the track with a Shakespearean reference, but all the songs on this CD tell an evocative and visual story.

Is it any good?

The Arctic Monkeys deliver stunning performances -- and, ironically, it's the realism and flat-out honesty of these songs that may also raise some parental concerns. There are references to underage drinking and street fights, a de-romanticized portrait of prostitution, a sprinkling of four-letter words, and CD art that makes smoking look cool. Still, the songs are so well written and well performed that this is one album that's probably worth a little PC discomfort and family discussion. The music is just so darn good.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the wonderful songwriting. What makes these songs so visually evocative? Also, where do you draw the line between being honest and glamorizing bad behavior?

Music details

  • Artist: Arctic Monkeys
  • Release date: February 21, 2006
  • Label: Domino
  • Genre: Indie Rock
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: July 15, 2015

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