It’s no secret that Interpol is probably my favorite band of all time. Their first record, “Turn On The Bright Lights,” was monumental in my musical journey and remains my favorite album of all time.
However, the band’s 2004 follow-up, “Antics,” is pretty high up there in my rankings of all six (soon to be seven) Interpol albums.
In my eyes, “Antics” bridges the gap between the debut and the expansive, major label debut “Our Love to Admire,” which many critics cite as the beginning of the end of the band’s peak.
As Strokes fans do with “Is This It” and “Room on Fire,” I imagine there are many Interpol listeners who rank “Antics” ahead of “Turn On The Bright Lights.” I, for one, don’t. But there are a lot of moments on the sophomore release that belong in a greatest hits catalog.
There’s the singles, obviously. “Evil” and “Slow Hands” will forever rank as two of Interpol’s most popular songs, but for me they don’t even approach the best songs on the record, those being “Narc” and “Not Even Jail.”
“Narc” is one of the most danceable songs in Interpol’s entire discography and features some of the best of Daniel Kessler’s stuttering lead guitar. The last minute and a half or so has guitar interplay that rivals any two-guitar band ever.
“Not Even Jail” feels massive. Sam Fogarino’s drum beat and the slow synth entrances makes the song feel like one that would introduce the band to a live crowd of like 60,000 people or something. I’m all for Interpol opening shows with moody, understated tracks like “Untitled” (or “Pioneer To The Falls,” when I saw them), but wouldn’t it be awesome if they blew away the crowd with six minutes of unrelenting bombast?
There’s no euphoric moments on “Antics” that approach the end of “PDA,” unfortunately. Reaching a musical climax such as that is probably impossible. The same goes for “Antics,” really. It would’ve been unrealistic to expect a young band to match a record like “Turn On The Bright Lights,” an album that is essentially a release of pent-up potential.
There’s something about debut records that, for a lot of bands, establish legacies that would be very hard to ever beat. And that’s OK. Interpol is still making really great and interesting music, and they have an album coming out in July, the first two singles see them changing their sound once again, and I’m all for it.
The debut album reeled a lot of people in. The follow-ups got them hooked and kept them around.
Ryan Meyer is a senior journalism major. He can be reached at [email protected] or at 581-2812.