Tour news: The Arctic Monkeys

They've progressed from the St James Theatre to Big Day Out's main stage - and now The Arctic Monkeys are preparing for their biggest New Zealand headlining shows yet.

The Sheffield band are set to perform two stadium shows here next year - at Auckland's Vector Arena on Friday, May 2, and Wellington's TSB Bank Arena on Saturday, May 3.

The announcement proves the Monkeys have steadily climbed their way through rock's ranks, from a 2006 show at Auckland's now-in limbo St James, to a main stage slot at the 2009 Big Day Out - which included a sweaty and heaving sold out sideshow at The Powerstation the night before.

In May the Monkeys will be bringing with them five albums of wry British rock, from the jumped-up story-telling jubilance of their 2006 debut Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not and their hit single I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor, to the Josh Homme-inspired swagger and guitar-driven maturity of this year's widely-acclaimed newbie, the Mercury Music Prize-nominated AM.

"When we came to make the record we just knew what we wanted to do a bit more and how to achieve it. Whereas in the early days, we didn't have a clue what to do. And we're over the moon with how AM turned out," guitarist Jamie Cook told TimeOut back in August.

"There's some great songs, we're really excited, and we just can't wait to get it out and start playing them."

The Monkeys will also be bringing some serious stadium swagger with them. They've now headlined the Glastonbury music festival twice, and this year have headlined several big-name European festival dates, including the Heineken Open'er Festival in Poland and Rock in Roma in Italy.

Tickets for their May shows go on sale on December 11 at 9am through Ticketmaster (Auckland) and Ticketek (Wellington). A 24-hour presale for Frontier Touring members begins on December 3 at 2pm.

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- TimeOut

- NZ Herald

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