Friday, May 20, 2022

Interpol – “Toni” (Official Music Video)

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Imagine the movie The Warriors with a lot more denim and dancing! (I literally have nothing here.) Watch below!

Still in shape, my methods refined,” sings Paul Banks on “Toni,” the opening track from Interpol’s 7th LP ‘The Other Side of Make-Believe,’ released July 15th on Matador. The album breaks fresh ground for the group: parallel to exploring the sinister undercurrents of contemporary life, Interpol’s new songs are imbued with pastoral longing and newfound grace. Daniel Kessler’s serpentine guitar arrangements crest skywards, Samuel Fogarino shatters his percussive precision into strange meters, while Paul Banks’ sonorous voice exudes a vulnerability that is likely to catch most long-term fans of the band off guard. After all, says Banks, “there’s always a seventh time for a first impression.”

A bolted-on future fan favorite, first single “Toni” arrives today as the first installment of a two-part dance film directed by Van Alpert (Post Malone, Machine Gun Kelly), with the second chapter to follow soon. Speaking on the collaboration, Banks notes, “It was a blast working with Van Alpert on the video for our song ‘Toni.’ We bonded over shared film inspiration as well as a passion for classic music videos by the likes of Glazer, Cunningham, and Jonze. Van, in my opinion, is in the club with these legends; and it’s exciting to watch him build his own enduring body of work.”

Video director Van Alpert says: “I wrote a crazy idea that I felt was new for INTERPOL, a hyper-modern, cinematic dance film. A ‘Lovers on the Run’ story, with a classic cliff-hanger ending. Dream job working for my all-time favorite band! Paul Banks ties everything together and elevated the concept, because he’s naturally a great actor, artist, and collaborator.”

Interpol play Kings Theatre in Brooklyn for two nights on May 14 and 15 and some of their biggest worldwide shows to date throughout the year, including the Rose Bowl Stadium in Los Angeles and City Palacio De Los Deportes arena in Mexico City.

Full dates, album tracklist and artwork can be found below, along with the album bio by Gabriel Szatan. 

‘The Other Side of Make-Believe’ began remotely across 2020. In early 2021, Interpol reconvened to flesh out new material at a rented home in the Catskills, before completing it later that year in North London, working for the first time with production veteran Flood (Mark Ellis), as well as teaming up again with former co-producer Alan Moulder. 

Writing on their own in those geographically-dispersed early stages gave the members a way out of their respective heads: “We really extracted the honey out of this situation”, says Fogarino. Kessler echoes the sentiment: “Working alone was raw at first, but has opened up a vivid new chapter for us.” In the Interpol Venn Diagram, each member found a way of expanding their individual circle in perfect harmony.

As Banks was grounded in Edinburgh for close to nine months, he got cosy in a window-side chair with a pen, pad and atypically cream-colored bass guitar. “We usually write live, but for the first time I’m not shouting over a drum kit,” he says. “Daniel and I have a strong enough chemistry that I could picture how my voice would complement the scratch demos he emailed over. Then I could turn the guys down on my laptop, locate these colorful melodies and generally get the message across in an understated fashion.” Banks adjusting his personal volume dimmer to a hush chimes with a period of global disquiet and the yearn for reconnection: “Flood told me the vocals on the demos evoked Mickey Rourke in “Barfly,” singing to a patron at the end of the tabletop, and we never felt the need to flip that smoky intimacy into something big and loud when it came to rehearse and record. I got a real kick out of doing the opposite.”

Coming from a group whose early material was characterized by Polish knife-wielders and incarcerated serial killers, you might expect Interpol’s take on the present day to be an emotional tar pit — perhaps doubly so, given the towering credentials of Flood and Moulder’s history with Nine Inch Nails, Curve, Gary Numan, Depeche Mode and more.

Yet Banks felt the call to push in a “counterbalancing” direction, with paeans to mental resilience and the quiet power of going easy. “The nobility of the human spirit is to rebound,” he says. “Yeah, I could focus on how fucked everything is, but I feel now is the time when being hopeful is necessary, and a still-believable emotion within what makes Interpol Interpol.” Kessler concurs: “The process of writing this record and searching for tender, resonant emotions took me back to teenage years; it was transformative, almost euphoric. I felt a rare sensation of purpose biting on the end of my fishing rod and I was compelled to reel it in.”

Even with spare piano caressing the intro of “Something Changed,” open-hearted cyclical chord progressions on “Passenger,” or anthemic waves of Kessler’s cresting guitar on “Big Shot City,” it doesn’t mean Interpol are entirely stopping to smell the roses, though. ‘The Other Side of Make-Believe’’s title, cover and a frequent lyrical lean toward fables, smokescreens and the mutability of truth reflect Banks’ disgust with the curdling of the information age. “I feel like the slipperiness of reality, and being willing to get violent on the basis of a factual disagreement, has had a super strenuous effect on the psyche of everyone in the world. Although,” he laughs, “I was talking about it so often that it kind of spooked my bandmates, so I found a way to express my concerns more through the lens of human beings’ non-rational faculties, and less civilizational collapse.”

On ‘The Other Side of Make-Believe,’ a deep interpersonal understanding means each member respects the other’s respective strengths better than ever, letting Interpol’s elemental qualities shine through. Song by song, Kessler sketches the architectural blueprint (invariably while watching a film — locus of inspiration for almost every song in the band’s catalogue), Banks frames artwork on the wall, then Fogarino arranges the furniture to have a certainpositioning and intent. 

Fogarino highlights Flood’s part in this equation “was to hyperbolize all of our good qualities. Our band has never exploited rock ‘n roll tropes, no big drum fills or wailing solos, so he located the core honesty in our sound and found a way to widen it. There’s a phrase I love about drumming: ‘the rhythm hates the melody’ — the best kind of drumming either totally accentuates what’s being conveyed, or ploughs through it.” So what does the splashy, dramatic beat on songs like “Renegade Hearts” and “Gran Hotel” imply? The answer comes back with a grin: “I guess Flood gave me room to plough.”

‘The Other Side of Make-Believe’ will soon feel as familiar in the public consciousness as it is to Paul Banks, Daniel Kessler and Sam Fogarino. Ever the paradox, the noir-ish trio have weathered nearly seven albums’ and several line-ups’ worth of rollercoasters far better than anyone might have predicted, never letting their sense of purpose escape. Over time, tags like ‘alternative’ and ‘indie’ have even faded from view. They are simply a rock group nowadays; one of the most distinctive, consequential and enduring rock groups of the 21st century so far. And a quarter-century into their lifespan, the band are all fired up again.

Interpol: their methods refined, still in terrific shape.

– Gabriel Szatan

The Other Side Of Make-Believe

Tracklist

1. Toni

2. Fables

3. Into The Night

4. Mr Credit

5. Something Changed

6. Renegade Hearts

7. Passenger

8. Greenwich

9. Gran Hotel

10. Big Shot City

11. Go Easy (Palermo)

INTERPOL TOUR DATES:

Monday, April 25 – Dallas, TX @ The Factory in Deep Ellum*

Tuesday, April 26 – Austin, TX @ ACL Live at the Moody Theater* SOLD OUT

Thursday, April 28 – Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theatre*

Friday, April 29 – San Diego, CA @ Cal Coast Credit Union Open Air Theatre* SOLD OUT

Saturday, April 30 – Berkeley, CA @ Greek Theatre*

Monday, May 2 – Salt Lake City, UT @ The Union *

Tuesday, May 3 – Denver, CO @ Mission Ballroom **

Thursday, May 5 – St. Paul, MN @ Palace Theatre*

Friday, May 6 – Chicago, IL @ Byline Bank Aragon Ballroom*

Saturday, May 7 – Detroit, MI @ The Fillmore Detroit*

Sunday, May 8 – Cleveland, OH @ Agora Theatre*

Tuesday, May 10 – Washington, DC @ The Anthem*

Wednesday, May 11 – Boston, MA @ Roadrunner*

Friday, May 13 – Philadelphia, PA @ The Met Philadelphia*

Saturday, May 14 – Brooklyn, NY @ Kings Theatre* SOLD OUT

Sunday, May 15 – Brooklyn, NY @ Kings Theatre*

Saturday, May 21 – Los Angeles, CA @ Rose Bowl, Pasadena – Just Like Heaven***

Saturday, May 28 – Mexico City, MEX @ Palacio De Los Deportes****

Wednesday, June 8 – Barcelona, Spain @ Sala Apolo

Thursday, June 9 – Barcelona, Spain @ Primavera Sound

6.11 – Porto, Portugal @ Primavera Sound

6.12 – Berlin, Germany @ Templehof Sounds Festival

6.14 – London, UK @ The Roundhouse SOLD OUT

6.15 – London, UK @ The Roundhouse

6.16 – Brussels, Belgium @ Ancienne Belgique SOLD OUT

6.18 – Paris, France @ Salle Pleyel SOLD OUT

6.19 – Landgraaf, Netherlands @ Pinkpop Festival

 Thursday, August 25 – Asbury Park, NJ @ Stone Pony Summer Stage ^

Friday, August 26 – Toronto, ON @ Budweiser Stage #

Saturday, August 27 ­– Portland, ME @ Thompson’s Point ^

Sunday, August 28 – Providence, RI @ Bold Point Pavilion ^

Tuesday, August 30 – Columbus, OH @ KEMBA Live! Outdoor ^

Thursday, September 1 ­­– Cincinnati, OH @ Andrew J. Brady Music Center ^

Friday, September 2 – Atlanta, GA @ The Eastern %

Saturday, September 3 – Asheville, NC @ Rabbit Rabbit ^

Tuesday, September 6 ­– Pittsburgh, PA @ Stage AE Outdoors ^

Thursday, September 8 ­– Indianapolis, IN @ TCU Amphitheater at

White River Park ^

Friday, September 9 ­– St. Louis, MO @ Stifel Theatre ^

Saturday, September 10 – Oklahoma City, OK @ The Criterion ^

Tuesday, September 13 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Theater at ^

Virgin Hotels Las Vegas ^

Wednesday, September 14 – Paso Robles, CA @ Vina Robles Amphitheatre ^

Friday, September 16 – Seattle, WA @ Paramount Theatre ^

Saturday, September 17 – Portland, OR @ Pioneer Courthouse Square ^

Sunday, September 18 – Portland, OR @ Pioneer Courthouse Square ^

*plus TYCHO and Matthew Dear

** Matthew Dear

***plus The Shins, Modest Mouse, M.I.A and more

****plus Dry Cleaning

^ Spoon + The Goon Sax

# Metric, Interpol, Spoon

Greg Kinne
Greg Kinnehttp://culturefiend.net
Greg started Culture Fiend as a way to discuss the many facets of pop culture. Greg usually surrounds himself with Star Wars action figures, Legos and a healthy supply of interesting films and unusual records.

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