March 11, 2005

Interpol’s Live ‘Antics’ Perfect for Chicago

By Randy J. Klodz

New York-based indie-rock band Interpol sold out Chicago’s Riviera Theatre when the band came through last year on Oct. 17 with Secret Machines as support. This time around, the demand for Interpol, and the new hit single “Slow Hands” from the album “Antics,” was so high, the band led the charge through a sold-out show on March 11 at Chicago’s much larger Aragon Ballroom.

Interpol--which includes Paul Banks (vocals, guitar), Daniel Kessler (guitar), Carlos Dengler (bass) and Samuel Fogarino (drums)--pulled together a tight 80-minute set that featured hit songs from the band’s acclaimed 2002 debut album “Turn on the Bright Lights” and 2004’s “Antics.”

Paul Banks was his usual quiet self in between songs, mostly addressing the crowd with “Thank you” on occasion, more or less letting the band’s indie-rock sound do the talking. Interpol often plays live in almost total darkness and in times of absolute blinding light. This was the case at the Aragon Ballroom as blinding white light showers saturated the stage following a rousing version of “Public Pervert.”

To add a bit to the spraying of light, a glittering disco ball was positioned stage left, just behind bassist Carlos Dengler’s stage position. Interpol enjoys opening its set with its current album’s opener, and in this case, the band did exactly that, in that it got the show started with “Next Exit,” the first track off of “Antics.”

Interpol busted into other songs “Hands Away,” “Narc,” “Not Even Jail,” “Take You on a Cruise,” all the while not forgetting hits “Obstacle 1,” “NYC,“ “PDA,” “Slow Hands,” and emerging hit “Evil,” which sent the dedicated Interpol faithful into a bouncing frenzy.

Toward the set’s end, Interpol played the mellow “Specialist,” a rare track found only on one of the band’s previous EP releases, which became the band’s first song to be played during the show’s encore. Prior to beginning “Specialist,” as each of the band’s members were returning to his position, drummer Sam Fogarino took the mic while pointing to the mass of fans in the first few rows in front of the stage and said, “You kids are crazy,” taking full appreciation for Interpol’s dedicated fan base. And that fan base is only going to continue to grow worldwide.

Washington-based trio Q and Not U warmed the stage with its keyboard and sample driven dance-rock. Interpol’s current U.S. tour runs through March 28 where the band is scheduled to perform at Electric Factory in Philadelphia. Interpol has also been invited to support Coldplay on a trek to Dublin in London this June. For more information on Interpol log on to www.interpolny.com.
Interpol Photo: Samuel Kirsenbaum