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Our Love To Admire
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Interpol - Our Love To Admire - Cd
Not every band would kick off their third album with a slow, six-minute trudge characterised by descending guitar lines, mournful melodica, and a frontman that sounds not so much suicidal as already decaying. Interpol, however, have never been shy of basking in melancholy, and Our Love to Admire is an album that just exults in it. Newly bolstered by funereal keyboards, Our Love to Admire feels full and rich where previous Interpol albums sometimes felt gaunt and bony. The old themes remain, however: emptiness, dislocation, and a rather caddish attitude to romance, as encapsulated on "No I in Threesome" or the pounding, sarcastic "The Heinrich Maneuver", a sour kiss-off to an ex-lover that sees frontman Paul Banks asking "How are things on the West Coast?/ I hear youre moving real fine" atop taut, stabbing bass. Further in, the band experiments with some more sprawling, elaborate song structures. The excellent "Mammoth" locks into a driving groove that! s most uncharacteristic for Interpol, Daniel Kessler trying out riff after riff like hes dressing for some important social occasion, while the climactic "The Lighthouse" is a bare wisp of ambient guitar that might be the bands stateliest, grandest moment to date. -- Louis PattisonSee all Product description
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The most epic tracks are amongst the most interesting here, Pioneer to the Falls, Rest My Chemistry and The Lighthouse all push five minutes, perhaps this is a direction Interpol should follow next? The sound has changed, there are lots more keyboards and emebellishments, which might have to do with the drummer having nerve problems, or Carlos D wanting to make soundtracks and listening only to classical (see a recent blog on Guardian Unlimited). I wonder if an instrumental record by Interpol would be interesting? - though I think they like songs and vocals, so like a band like Wire, seem caught between poppier climes and the avant garde, which isn't the worst place to be...
No I in Threesome is unlike a previous record, with a John Cale/Terry Riley style piano and a feel that reminds me a little of early REM, or one of their peers like Pylon (see the wonderful Crazy). Next track The Scale similarly throws the listener, who might be waiting for an Evil or Slow Hands - instead it's a tight mid paced rocker that concludes with an E-Bow solo from Paul Banks that sounds very Robert Fripp...which can only be quite a decent thing? Those who wanted another Antics and not best pleased so far will be appeased with single the Heinrich Maneuver which is a sort of sequel to Evil, with a Pixies-style bassline - though it's even tighter and more angular, veering off into an odd direction - even sounding like the next track. Heinrich even gets away with the line, "today my heart swings", which in other hands probably wouldn't fly. My favourite track and the centrepiece of the album is Mammoth, which appears to be one of the few tracks they're playing from Our Love to Admire on this year's tour - though much of that has been Festival related. Let's hope that more Admire-material is moved into the live set by the time I see them in Birmingham in August! I'd rather hear No I In Threesome, Rest My Chemistry, Mammoth, Pioneer to the Falls, The Scale, Heinrich, Pace is the Trick and The Lighthouse than an older song...
The first half of the LP concludes strongly on Pace is the Trick, which feels like an expansion on directions apparent on earlier joys like NYC, Leif Erikson and A Time So Small. Our Love...goes a bit askew next with All Fired Up, which doesn't quite hang together for me - sounding like several ideas that don't quite fuse together - fortunately Rest My Chemistry is next and returns things back to that high standard. The keyboards are quite ambient, though the second guitar that comes in does sound like that riff from Where Is My Mind by The Pixies!! Who Do You Think sounds like a revisit to the style of Say Hello to the Angels, while the closing duo of Wrecking Ball and The Lighthouse point at interesting directions for the future (whether Capitol will agree with that though...). The last two tracks feel a little shoegaze, a little post rock and certainly not the anthemic directions that some may have expected from a Killers version of Interpol...
How Our Love to Admire will date is another question, but right now it sounds pretty fine and not the dud some reviews are suggesting - I have a feeling some of these songs will be as pleasantly regarded as Untitled, Obstacle 1, or Not Even Jail in the future...