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Scott Newman
Scott Newman

Interpol, (not the International Criminal Police Organisation) the band is this week's artist spotlight. I want to take a look at this mysterious band who is touring with the new album Interpol starting in Australia.



Interpol are: Daniel Kessler, Paul Banks & Sam Fogarino (from left to right)

Interpol are an exciting, intelligent, relevant and challenging band. They formed back in 1997 in New York and have been producing quality indie rock albums during the 2000's. The latest offering is Interpol (self titled)

The first two albums Turn on the Bright Lights & Antics are critically acclaimed and are a staple of the bands genius. Granted they sound a lot like Joy Division, The Chameleons or the Smiths at times!

The band changed labels and tinkered the sound somewhat on Our Love to Admire which led them into touring with many bands like U2, The Cure and Muse. They have played many festivals across the world and have a sound best suited for indoor venues.

On the current tour David Pajo (bass) & Brandon Curtis (keyboards, backup vocals) have joined the band.

I have seen them play in concert three times on the last two tours. I recommend seeing them in a venue with a good sound system to really appreciate their art rock. Check out my review of the latest album.




After listening to this album through and through, I found that my opinion on this album changed over time from more favourable to less. The reasons that I come to is that this is not a solid album at all overall.

Firstly it is disappointing that Carlos Dengler has now left the band. He had so much of the creative influence, drive and power of Interpol's sound. The band almost broke up many times over the last couple of years. They must have sorted out their differences and then delivered this album in the aftermath.

At times in this album the band sound like classic U2, David Bowie or Garbage and then they sound very basic like they are starting out new again? Perhaps this is the direction they want to go in now? A much stripped back basic sound with little climax as compared to the first two albums.

This could be of course the curse of the self titled album mid-way through their career. I certainly hope that they haven't fired all their shots earlier in the beginning. This band has more promise than that as they have an intelligent indie rock sound which is clean, well produced by a clear delivery which offers great playback value.

The best songs on this album are Memory Serves, Lights & Try It On (in my opinion) They have just two singles Barricade & Summer Well off the new album so far. They are hoping to pick up more attention in the New Year tour. What really makes this album tricky to gauge is that it is over 45 minutes long but feels like it is drawn out?

It does have its moments in the album though overall it only stands up if you had not heard Interpol before. If you compare it to the last three albums you will be disappointed. It sounds like they have spent too much time polishing the sound in the studio leaving tricks on the album without giving away any of the hooks or raw changes they had before. The atmosphere/ambience they create in this album feel like filler.

Don't get me wrong I am a fan of the band. I just expected much more from this album. (They have set lofty standards in the past) It will be interesting to see what new direction the three take without Carlos. They will be seeking other arrangements with bassist on tour. I am still going to see them play in Vancouver next month as I love the previous work.

If you see them play live in concert on tour or know the new album please comment with your opinion. Thank you!


Here are a couple of videos of the singles Barricade & Summer Well (Off ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live show) 











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