Tuesday 23 November 2010

Decent Show By Interpol

Interpol are a one of a kind band. Their sound and the voice of singer Paul Banks are unique. I love their dark and threatening sound, a big thundercloud hanging over your head that's about to unleash its terror. But on their latest album they didn't really keep their promise to return to their early sound of debut album 'Turn On The Bright Lights' that had a huge impact. Maybe they can in a live show.

Interpol at Heineken Music Hall Amsterdam, November 21 2010 (Ronald Says 7 out of 10)
I wanted to check out support act Surfer Blood as well since I didn't see them on Lowlands earlier this year. But it turned out to be disappointing. They are still a long way from entertaining venues this size and most people soon lost interest. So by the time the lights dimmed and the silhouettes of the Interpol members showed up we still needed a bit of warm up.

And so did the band themselves. The start was a bit hesitant and it took a few songs before they really got loose. That may also have to do with their set list. Not all songs have the same impact as let's say 'Evil' or 'Slow Hands'. Which doesn't have to be a problem and doesn't mean they aren't good songs but if there are a few of those in a row it's hard to keep a crowd focused. And so the show had a few moments where it lost momentum. It was kind of the same feeling I have when listening to their last album. It's a good album but it never really lifts off and you know how much better they can be.

Of course you don't go to an Interpol show for the audience interaction or spontaneous moments. Their music is powerful enough on its own. The dark lighting and smoke helped emphasizing the typical dark Interpol feel and the band members were looking like shadows most of the time. The band played really tight and there weren't many mistakes except for a false start of 'The Heinrich Maneuver' which was even the last song of their encore. Although bass player David Pajo did a fine job replacing Carlos Dengler I think his absence is a big miss in their sound. Hopefully I will run into them a few times more next year in the festival season to see if they can come back with one of their impressive performances.

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