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Turn On The Bright Lights

MATADOR Sep 07th 2010
Vinyl
249 NOK
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At some point early on, someone decided to start comparing this New York trio to Joy Division, which makes sense, given the mannered, precise fashion in which the group builds tension and (sometimes) releases it, and for the fact that Paul Bank's voice occasionally approaches the depths of Ian Curtis' thick baritone. These comparisons began snowballing and eventually turned to accusations of cloning. This is a horribly nearsighted way of viewing the band; a Joy Division comparison is only one of many that can be drawn, and they are all tenuous at best. A couple examples: Bank's tightly wound nervousness truthfully has more in common with the Violent Femmes' Gordon Gano without sounding like a bratty, scrawny Patti Smith fan; the solemn "NYC" surprisingly resembles mid-'80s U2 to an extent, removing all the pomp and throwing itself into a thicket of reverb anchored by a dubwise bass line. To those looking beneath the surface, Interpol becomes a band of its own. Each of the songs here emits various shades of gray, built on durable arrangements, a veteran band's sense of economy and dynamics, and a streak of gloom that never quite reaches overbearing doom.