It was via an email from the band that the world was alerted to the fact that its favorite (well, certainly my favorite) NYC indie post-punksters and keepers of the flame of icy cool, Interpol, would be returning to the music scene with their first album since their 2004 beloved release Antics.
What? There’s an album after Antics? Right, Our Love To Admire! A little more of an orchestral shift on that record but Our Love To Admire had some worthy, compelling and certainly a make-you-shake-your-head moment in that one song about coaxing your lady love into a threesome. Always the sweet-talker, that Paul Banks…
Wait… an album after OLTA? Do you remember it? Yeah, neither do I. The truth is that it was a sad, sad muppet of an album, so nondescript in sound and tone that the band couldn’t even come up with a catchy title for it, instead they simply called it Interpol. Yes, that spoke volumes.
Interpol, the album, was like Interpol, the band, on Ambien and in need of Prozac. I’d honestly forgotten it even existed and, once I remembered, I could recall not one song nor it’s lead off single. So I had to look it up and what I found elicited a pained “Oh yeah… that.” Somehow their pristine and angular sound had watered itself down to dull as dishwater via stronger emphasis on electronic touches, almost a complete absence of Carlos D’s muscular staccato bass and a very diminished presence of Daniel Kessler’s pointedly signature guitar. And that was unfortunate.
But here comes the band’s fifth studio outing, El Pintor: that’s Spanish for “the painter” as well as (gasp) an anagram for the band name. Cool. Sounds like Banks and company (minus Carlos D as he has since left the band) at least have some syntax creativity in play. Now let’s hope that it carries over onto the record which is due out September 9th. It’s 10 tracks long and features guest appearances from Brandon Curtis (The Secret Machines), Roger Joseph Manning, Jr. (Beck, Air) and Rob Moose (Bon Iver). Did I mention that they’re back on Matador Records? Amen to that.
In the meantime as we wait with heartfelt anticipation for El Pintor, Interpol has offered up a behind the scenes look at their tinkering on the new album, as well as what finely dressed gents they still are after all these years. I mean, seriously: Sam Foggarino even rehearses drums while wearing a tie.
Welcome back, Interpol. Please don’t suck.