Menu | Rating System | Guest Book | Archived Reviews:
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z


INTERPOL w/ Blonde Redhead



  The Tabernacle  
  Midtown Atlanta, GA  
Reviewed by:
Performance Rating:
Sound Quality:
Overall Rating:

Well, Blonde Redhead didn't play long enough as far as I'm concerned, although the crowd didn't seem to know who they were. There was a 96Rock bus out front, and I doubt they've ever thought about playing a Blonde Redhead track. Still, I was almost more excited to see Blonde Redhead play at a larger venue. The last 2 times I saw them was at The Echo Lounge, which was sold out and packed. But this time I got to see Mako's skinny legs.

The sound was all right. It seemed that the first couple of numbers from Blonde Redhead were a little poorly mixed. By song three, however, everything sounded ok. They played mostly from Melody of Certain Damaged Lemons and Misery is a Butterfly, including Pink Love and Misery is a Butterfly. By this point, the sound was great. It seems as if the percussionist has to run the loops or samples, and props go out to Mr. Simone Pace for having the coordination to do so. Blonde Redhead's final song was a song from an earlier album, in which Mako shows off her scream. It was also fairly obvious that some people hadn't heard it ever before, so it was a nice surprise for all.

Interpol came out about half an hour later. The wife and I stood about mid floor, holding our ground while the place packed it in. And I unfortunately found out a little about the girl behind me. She and her friends drove up her from Fucking Florida for this show. She was also a self proclaimed drunk, and had her first experience of public pot smoking at a concert like this. She also loves Radiohead and really likes Antics, the new Interpol album. I wanted her to just die. No, not really, but I seriously wanted to tell her that her mouth was in my ear.

So, Interpol came out and it was great. This was the first time that I'd seen them, since the last time they came to Atlanta, it sold out. They started with the first track on Antics, which I hadn't really cared for until then. It absolutely reminded me of The Pixies surf version of Wave of Mutilation. Beautiful! They played a lot from both albums, although I couldn't name all their songs, but I could listen to both albums and tell you what they didn't play. During the encore, they also did a song that appeared on the Matador at 15 Compilation called Specialist. In sum, we were out of there around 10:45. Not bad for a work night.

As a band, Interpol is hard for me to describe. There's obviously the Joy Division influence in the singer. But, they also do a lot of almost dancey disco beat stuff that is purely filler or lead in. No odd times, but rather pretty straight-ahead rock, with great changes and tempo adjustments. In both guitars, I hear a lot of reverb-oriented, slow surf influenced notation. A very seductive package. And the band was very well dressed.

Interpol had a solid performance that took command of every song they played. I've rarely seen a band that really controls like that on stage. At this point in their career, they are truly professional. Still, there were what seems to be a lot of technical guitar issues. In particular, the singer seemed to have a lot of issues. In fact, they stopped playing a song because a guitar pedal seemed to malfunction. Then they started up the song again. I would've thought Interpol were the type to just axe the song at that point in the set, but I'm glad they played it. Similarly, for a later song, they brought out the Ebow, and it appeared that it wasn't working appropriately. Nevertheless, overall, the guitars sounded a bit watery (perhaps due to the acoustics of the Tabernacle?) and the backup singing was either too loud or barely audible. Despite these minor imperfections, the show was beautiful. A fairly elaborate light show was icing on the cake. But the music was the best part. The singer sounded even more solid and stronger in person that on the albums, and the bass and drums were right on.

After the show, I said to my wife that this was probably like seeing Radiohead after debuting The Bends -- a band on the verge of world domination. I only hope Interpol's next album is very different. I think Antics is too similar to Turn on the Bright Lights. But just like Bright Lights, it probably will grow on me. And after seeing the new tracks performed, i like them even more.

To me, Interpol was not that big of a deal. But I think as the years go by, I'll look at this show as one of those special nights when I got to see a band before they started making concept albums and getting way too silly.

Related Links:
  Albums related to this show:
    Melody of Certain Damaged Lemons by Blonde Redhead
    Turn on the Bright Lights by Interpol

Return to the top of this page. | Return to the Concert Review menu.