During the late nineties and early part of the 2000s there was this resurgence of bands making music that possessed many of the characteristics of early to mid eighties New Wave and post punk. Interpol for this listener was one of the best bands of that period, creating a style of post punk that while recalling that classic era was still incredibly fresh and original.
The first time I heard “Untitled”, the lead track from the band’s 2002 debut Turn on the Bright Lights, I was completely mesmerized, not just by the haunting vocals of Paul Banks which immediately brought to mind the late Ian Curtis of Joy Division fame, but the guitar work was totally reminiscent of The Chameleons. The combination was beautiful and more important, it was pure awesome. I was hooked and the rest of that great album remains one of my favorite discs today and in my opinion one of the all-time great debut albums.
Following up that album was going to be difficult but Interpol was more than up to the task. Antics was released in 2004 and was nearly as stunning an album. “Evil”, “Slow Hands” and “C’Mere” remain essential Interpol classics, but the sixth track “Not Even Jail” is not just my favorite song on the album and my favorite Interpol track period, it also ranks as an all-time favorite song of ever.
The band is now down to a three-piece but as long as drummer Sam Fogarino is in the fold Interpol fans will be happy. Paul Banks on guitar, bass and vocals and Daniel Kessler on guitar and vocals are critical parts of the mix, but to me the work on the drums from Fogarino is what makes this such an amazing band. They are releasing their fifth studio album El Pintor this coming September, their first since 2010. Interpol will be playing in concert August 20th at the Marquee Theatre, a welcome return after the unbelievable show they delivered there back in 2011. I HIGHLY suggest you get to that show folks!
Want proof? Interpol ended its show in 2011 at the Marquee with “Not Even Jail”. I rarely make a point of recording an entire song live during a show but this one I wanted for posterity. Enjoy.
Album Inspiration: Antics