10 years later, Arctic Monkeys' 2006 debut, Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not is still an important record. Regardless of how many more great records Arctic Monkeys will release upon the world, as they dip and dive through all the stages of rock and roll's evolution whilst giving it a modern polish, nothing is ever going to stand up to it in my eyes. It's quite a presumptuous statement, of course. Who knows? They might put out The Greatest Record Of All Time before they decide to pack it in, but it's still not going to hold a candle to that debut for me.

Why? Because Whatever People Say I Am is my record. It's the first record that I felt was capturing the perfect snapshot of my life at that moment in time. Pulp's back catalogue was the closest I ever came to feeling like an album was created specifically for me, but I was never as lecherous as young Jarvis; hopping into bed with married women or popping pills in a remote field somewhere, mostly because I was far too young at the time. Plus, the world Jarvis was living in was much different to mine.

Though we both grew up in Northern cities ravaged by the decline of industry, Jarvis was much closer to the epicentre of it all. His experiences of youth were different to mine and, though I could see flashes of my experiences there, I didn't fully connect with it. By the time I was born, Thatcher had gone, the Berlin Wall had fallen down and, though I didn't realise the importance at the time, we were stuck in a No Man's Land between two James Bonds. It was a different world to that Jarvis was born into (though he did have to experience the tail-end of the Roger Moore Bond...poor fella).

But when I first heard Alex Turner et al after someone at school gave me a burned CD with Beneath the Boardwalk on it, Arctic Monkeys' unofficial collection of demos that preceded Whatever People Say I Am, I had a jolt of recognition. That was me! They were singing about my generation, my experiences, my life. They sung like lads from Yorkshire, a recognisable vernacular so similar to mine which you just never heard in that era of London-centric culture (unless you avidly watched Emmerdale). Most importantly, it was happening now. Not 20 years removed. Right this very moment.

We were a generation of lost young souls and listening to Whatever Ever People Say I Am felt like someone was holding a mirror up to our lives and going, "We're all like this. We're all trying to find out place, but it's all OK. We'll figure it out. We're young and we've got plenty to be getting on with in the meantime." This had existed before, with the likes of The Libertines, but it wasn't a youth I recognised.

Arctic Monkeys were older than me, but we were still living the same teenage trials-by-fire, wandering aimlessly through the grim North, long after the optimism of Blairite Britain had died out. Trying to sneak into clubs to neck on with a girl you knew was going to be there, avoiding the fights outside as the drunken masses fell onto the street, drinking shit alcohol in parks or at house parties because it was all we could get our hands on. Alex Turner was speaking to a whole generation but he was also speaking directly to me - directly to every single one of us who found solace in early music forums rather than in the pages of NME (though the explosion of Arctic Monkeys did lead to something of an NME revival for my generation).

Ten years on, listening back to Whatever People Say I Am gives me Proustian rush. It was the soundtrack to almost every indie disco going throughout my teenage years after all - if 'I Bet Your Look Good On The Dancefloor' or 'Fake Tales of San Francisco' didn't get played, we didn't bother going back because what was the point of an indie disco that didn't play the most important indie records? Even as I enter my mid-twenties, the songs and lyrics still come to mind. I can't get through that post-night out haggle with the taxi driver to let us in with our burgers and chips packed loosely into polystyrene cartons without thinking of 'Red Lights Indicate Doors Are Secured'. I'll still approach queues outside a club with a Plan B in case we don't get in for some reason ala 'From Ritz to the Rubble'.

Though I may not be that same kid anymore, there's no denying that Whatever People Say I Am was such an important record in my life. It defined my generation. It was an album that soundtracked my youth and turned what I thought to be the mundane and the everyday into something of a Northern fairytale.

10 years later, this album is like flipping through a picture book full of memories of awkward fumbling, of arguments and of discovering who you were in a world that appeared at the time to have everything against you.

All this with an unpolished sound, clanging guitars and clattering drums, that matched the lyrics perfectly. They were just four lads from Yorkshire messing about and having a bit of fun. I knew people like them, I was mates with people like them. And though they too have grown up and out of that life, living it up in LA, there's no forgetting where you come from.