After winning their guitars for Christmas 2001, neighbors Alex Turner and Jamie Cook formed a band with their school friends, Andy Nicholson, who played bass, and Matt Helders, who was left to be the drummer. Under the name Bang Bang, they played covers from bands like Led Zeppelin and sang with a Sheffield accent. After Alex took over the vocals and the task of writing songs (he actually already had a few), they changed the band's name to Arctic Monkeys.
After some of the first concerts, in 2003, they started to record CD demos and distribute them to the public. As the offer was limited, fans copied the songs and made them available on the Internet. Even a profile of the band on the MySpace website was created, all without the members themselves being aware. Thanks to this viral dissemination by the large network, soon not only friends, but hundreds of people sang all the lyrics at the concerts.
In 2004, its popularity caught the attention of BBC Radio One and the British press. Mark Bull, a local amateur photographer, filmed a live performance and made the video for "Fake Tales Of San Francisco", launching it on his website, along with the collection Beneath The Boardwalk.
In May 2005, the band released their first EP, Five Minutes with Arctic Monkeys, with only 1500 copies on CD and 2000 on 7 "Vinyl, but also available on the iTunes Music Store. In June they signed a contract with Domino Records and soon then they played on the Carling Stage, the stage for the Reading and Leeds festivals reserved for lesser-known bands. In October, the band's first release by Domino Records, I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor, went straight to number one in the UK sales of compacts, with 38,962 copies. In the same month, they printed their first cover of the magazine New Musical Express.
The second compact, When The Sun Goes Down, came out on January 6, 2006 and sold 38,922 copies, again reaching the top of sales. Despite the Internet leak and intense file sharing, the debut album Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not, released in 2006, reached record sales figures. The 120,000 copies in the UK on the first day alone surpassed the sum of all other albums in the country's "top 20" on that date, and the first week was closed at 363,735 copies.
Without letting the dust settle, in April 2006, they released an EP with five tracks, Who the Fuck Are Arctic Monkeys?. Despite the high sales, the dirty language of the songs resulted in low radio performances, which did not bother the band. Shortly after the release of the EP, the band introduced a new bassist, Nick O'Malley. Initially, Nick would only replace Andy on the US tour, but it was later announced that he had left the band permanently. In August, they released Leave Before The Lights Come On, the first compact not to reach the first place of sales. Shortly thereafter, the album Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not won the Mercury Music Prize, leaving behind albums like he Eraser by Thom Yorke, The Back Room by Editors and Black Holes and Revelations by Muse.
In April 2007, Arctic Monkeys released their second album, Favourite Worst Nightmare, which on the 29th of the same month already appeared at number one on the British charts. From this album came three singles, "Brianstorm", released in April, "Fluorescent Adolescent", in July and "Teddy Picker" in December, ending the tour of the album. The band released their third album in 2009, entitled Humbug, with some tracks produced by Josh Homme of Queens Of The Stone Age. In addition, The Kills frontman Alison Mosshart shares the vocals with Alex on the track "Fire And The Thud ".
Arctic Monkeys' fourth studio album, Suck It and See, came out in June 2011. In February 2012, the band released the song "R U Mine?", Which was included on the soundtrack for the video game "Forza Horizon". The song also came out on the group's fifth album, AM, released in September 2013.
In 2018, the band surprised by releasing Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino, an album that caused strangeness among their fans. Mixing elements of lounge pop, space pop and jazz, Arctic Monkeys' sixth album was compared to the works of artists such as David Bowie, Serge Gainsbourg, Leonard Cohen, Nick Cave, among others.