Few bands have impacted the music stratosphere with a debut album like New York’s post-punk mega-band Interpol. It is amazing how instant Turn On The Bright Lights influenced the industry and how substantially it was received. All music lovers had to take notice of the fresh approach these boys had.
Since then Interpol has strummed their way along the road of success. Antics kept close to the vision and feel of Bright Lights but did not really add to their momentum. Fast forward 8 or so years and the self-titled release falls short of the expectations of many. Including me.
I walked into the Orpheum last night with a mind set — eager to see the band that helped define a time but unsure if that band is still here.
As always the crowd was a fascinating part of the show. All ages, all styles, all sizes. It is not a surprise that the sold out venue would represent such a large cross section of music fans. The excitement was contagious and emphaticly pursuaded my anticipation.
School of Seven Bells (SOSB) opened the show but few from the sold out crowd actually went inside to watch. I assume mostly due to the lame no alcoholic drinks in the actual theater house. All drinks (other than water) must be consumed in the lobby/hallway. Only in Canada would such a ridiculous rule be made. This may explain the sloppily intoxication that took place; after all it is a race.
SOSB hail from New York and performed tracks off of their luke warm album Disconnect From Desire. I did not catch the entire performance and missed “I L U” instead catching part of “Windstorm” and a few other tracks I didn’t recognize. I do like this band especially the twins. Any rock’n’roll identical twin hotties can play in my city anytime.
Interpol took the stage with an indifferent reverie and slummed through the first few tracks. The crowds insistent energy encouraged some life and they broke off tracks like Say Hello to the Angels, Rest My Chemistry and Narc with mounting intensity. Somewhere around the middle of the show the energy leveled out but was later raised again. This could partially be due to the venue as according to my buddy “It is hard to listen to good boring music sitting down.” There simply is not much to do but bob your head and sing along.
We must also consider the acoustics in Orpheum are nothing to bob your head at. At times Paul Bank’s muffled lyrics confused my memory of the song. As I mentioned in this weeks Hot Ticket, Interpol has also recently become Dengler-less and I think this may of had something to do with it also.
The most notable thing for me in this performance is that, like any band that is a re-creating semblance of their former self the crowd responded best to the classics. The encore included Slow Hands and earlier they played Evil, each time they played a old song the crowd lost their minds, eyes lit with the excitement of a memory, of another time. A time when this band was on the edge, the verge of a frontier that has long since passed them.
Originally I hoped that seeing them live would revive something I had for them. Now I simply hope that they didn’t ruin the memory. Like watching a movie you loved from the past only to shake your head and wonder why? I do cut them some slack as the funny thing about starting at the top is there is no really is no where else to go. Re-creation is the only answer and Interpol has a lot of work to do.
Where you at the show? What did you think?
Photos courtesy of Skot Nelson.
- Interpol Friday, They Really Know How to Sell Out (seattlest.com)
- Saturday Afternoon Artist ‒ Interpol (kexp.org)
- Weezer glows ‘Blue’ at Orpheum show (boston.com)
- “Watch a New School of Seven Bells Video + Tour w/Interpol” and related posts (causeequalstime.com)
- Short List: This Week’s Recommended Shows (seattleweekly.com)
- Album Drop: This Week’s New Releases, From Interpol To The Thermals (thefrisky.com)