Effortlessly impressing
Interpol - Live At O2 Academy, Glasgow

"I wonder what Carlos Dengler is doing right now?" are not the kind of thoughts the remaining (and newest) members of Interpol might want their fans to be dwelling upon 5 minutes before a show. Nonetheless, it was the lines running through my head as I waited patiently for the relatively 'new' look three, oh sorry, four piece to take to the stage in a surprisingly quiet looking Glasgow Academy. One high profile bassist down and another lesser known firmly in place, Interpol's Glaswegian return judging by the poor crowd numbers, wasn’t as hotly anticipated as on previous visits. The eponymous fourth album, by far the band’s weakest, perhaps a factor in some of Glasgow's most passionate gig going public not turning out tonight, and maybe, just maybe, forgetting the flashing forms of greatness this lot is more than capable of.

Beginning with 'Interpol'’s opener, 'Success', Paul Banks and company moped away any disappointment over a low turnout. However it wasn’t until the second track, the Strokes-like 'Say Hello To The Angels', that the show really got going. Draped in their customary immaculate black suits and shirt and tie combination, the band kept crowd interaction to a minimum preferring to let the crooning do the talking. Blistering and moody beats like 'C'mere', 'Hands Away' and 'Rest My Chemistry' (taken from their first three albums) are aired early on and did their job in pleasing those of us who still worship Interpol’s formative years. When songs from their fourth album did come, they may even have inspired doubters like myself to revisit and revaluate.

'The Heinreich Maneuvere' and 'Slow Hands' were given their due place before the band left and reappeared, saying their farewells before performing 'The Specialist' and closing with the thrilling 'Obstacle 1'. With the bassist staying well away from the stage limelight throughout the show, it was left to Banks and Kessler to serenade an audience that were duly satisfied. Whatever your opinion (or heartache) over the last record and the departing of Carlos D, Interpol are still effortlessly impressing.

Words by Ray Jackson

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