Interpol

Our Love to Admire (Capitol)

Phases & Stages

Interpol

Our Love to Admire (Capitol)

Interpol's brooding has always pulsed cold and calculated, a measure that only added to the emotional disturbance and damp decadence of the band's still brilliant debut, 2002's Turn On the Bright Lights. With its disappointing and predictable follow-up two years later, Antics, the NYC quartet's shadowy allure all but disappeared, a trend Interpol tries to reverse through orchestration and the rich production of major label debut, Our Love to Admire. Opener "Pioneer to the Falls" builds perfectly, beginning with characteristically bleak guitar and teardrop piano thrusting forward into a symphonic swell led by Sam Fogarino's funeral march. Instead of fading four minutes in, however, it drags out for an additional minute and a half. The same fate befalls "Wrecking Ball," which, despite the extended outro, remains the most intriguing composition in Interpol's catalog, warping Sixties soul, washed-out harmonies, and plucked strings into a bleak ballad as Paul Banks croons cutting lines like "I'm inside, like a wrecking ball through your eyes." Scintillant guitars sinking into the undertow of Banks' deadpan delivery spotlight "The Lighthouse," but a dramatic ending ruins the moment. Streamlined lead single "The Heinrich Maneuver" could use CPR, while Banks' pleas in the bouncy "No I in Threesome" are downright laughable (sample lyric: "Baby it's time we give something new a try"). The psych guitar closing "The Scale" and "Mammoth" work well, but Our Love to Admire could use more Carlos D.'s low-end bass/keyboard flourishes. Perhaps it's time to turn the lights out.

**

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