Interpol are now a long, long way from the ‘Joy Division copyists’ tag which dogged them around the release of their 2002 debut, and three years have passed since 2007’s superb ‘Our Love To Admire’. It’s been a long absence from a band with a towering reputation. After the opening thrill of recognition, though, ‘Interpol’ begins to feel a little samey.

The production, as ever, is slick yet icy cold, like a contract killer in a sharp suit, and on ‘Summer Well’ Paul Banks’ vocals, always detached, seem almost physically separate from the music – sung from a distant place, or the top of a tall building. The problem here is that amidst the dry ice and echoing guitars, there’s no standout track. Devotees will still love the chilled, clinical atmosphere of these songs, but those hoping for an expansion or diversion in the classic Interpol sound will be left disappointed. This record gives the impression of a band whose well of inspiration is almost dry.

By Chris Watkeys

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