There was a time, not even that long ago, when having the Arctic Monkeys headline a three-band bill at the Hollywood Bowl would’ve been suspicious, if not downright audacious. The quartet from Sheffield, England has long had the following to fill 17,000-plus seats in Los Angeles, but didn’t always display the requisite charisma to captivate an expansive audience in such a cavernous venue.

But where once the Arctic Monkeys might’ve sacrificed showmanship to ensure that the live performance of its music maintained the integrity of its perfected studio sound, they let their catalog of loquacious bangers and ironic ballads fly like never before on a chilly October night in the Hollywood Hills.

That evolution came through loud and clear from the get-go. Following scintillating opening sets from Mini Mansions and the Lemon Twigs, the Monkeys emerged on the Hollywood Bowl’s massive stage in front of a similarly (and appropriately) monolithic visual setup. The stage bumped in flashes of bright red as the thumps of “Four Stars Out of Five” rang out across Highland Avenue.

The burnt-out lounge-singer vibes of Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino, the band’s latest release, rang through the Arctic Monkeys’ entire evening. Sure, the additions of the moody “She Looks Like Fun” and “Star Treatment” did their part to convey a group-wide attitude that was at once more mature and more cavalier than on past tours.

But so, too, did the demeanor of the men onstage. Alex Turner, the band’s lead singer and occasional guitarist/keyboardist, was no more outside of the setlist than he’d ever been—which is to say, hardly at all. But the 32-year-old, sporting a buzz cut and a dressy casual ensemble, commanded the stage without a need for domination.

He and his mates had no trouble pulling off the punk-rock praxis of long-time standards like “Brainstorm”, “Do Me a Favour”, “I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor” and “Library Pictures.” Nor were there any issues transitioning to the bassier, grungier vibes of “Crying Lightning” and “Down Sit Down ‘Cause I Moved Your Chair.”

And consider the popularity, profundity, and relative recency of “AM,” it was no surprise to see and hear the Arctic Monkeys pepper their set with everything from “Snap Out Of It,” “One For the Road”, and “Knee Socks” to “No. 1 Party Anthem” and “Do I Wanna Know,” with “Arabella” and “R U Mine?” closing out the entire show.

Along the way, Turner and company flashed an unusual (but wholly welcome) willingness to play around with their typically buttoned-up songs in a live setting. They accentuated the rhythmic shifts inherent in “All The Pretty Visitors,” busted out a frenetic jam as a bridge between “505” and the title track off their new album, and even got gaudy enough to drop a disco cube from the rafters during their encore.

In truth, this stepping-out was a long time coming for the Arctic Monkeys. They’re not the timid kids from across the pond anymore, the ones whose staid stage presence belied their irreverent, head-banging brilliance. Some 15 years and six LPs into a stellar career in rock and roll, the Arctic Monkeys have finally (and thankfully) thawed. In doing so, they’ve hit upon an aura of confidence that makes the band exceedingly capable of not only delivering on an already pliable audience’s hopes, but subverting those same expectations with the playful dryness that’s been the band’s hallmark since it first burst onto the scene as an assembly of screaming teens with a knack for lyrical irreverence.