The New York doom mongers returned to Reading Festival for the first time since 2007. Their position might have remained the same as last time, third from top. However, this time the band returned without mesmeric bassist, Carlos D, who left the band in August 2010, shortly after recording commenced on their fourth album.
While the rest of the band turned up in their usual suited attire, Essex-born frontman Paul Banks opted to turn up in an Adidas track suit that looked totally out of place and against the band’s serious look and mood. However, despite Banks’ obvious wardrobe malfunction, everything you’d usually expect from the four-piece was firmly in place.
Opening with “Success” from their aforementioned eponymous fourth album, started a slow and sombre set, which gradually began to build, until reaching the set’s high point, “Evil.” It was one of a few songs that had the crowd, full of fans mostly awaiting headliners Muse, singing along and feeling upbeat. However, that wasn’t the only high point of the set, with “C’Mere” and “Slow Hands”, both from Interpol’s second album Antics, also drawing crowd involvement, alongside former single ”The Heinrich Maneuver”, from 2007’s third album, Our Love to Admire.
Whilst the band’s touring bassist Brad Traux isn’t as compelling as Carlos D once was, it’s hard to notice him, with Banks and lead guitarist Daniel Kessler on top from, driving along the song’s melodies. Traux’s toned up bass had earlier interrupted “Success”, before that was quickly averted prior to the band’s second song, “Say Hello to the Angels”.
The band end the set on old favourite “Obstacle 1”, from their highly critical-acclaimed debut, Turn On the Bright Lights, which again draws warm applause from the vocal section of Interpol fans in the audience.
Whilst the band could have been more adventurous with some song choices and Banks could have been more vocal with the crowd, it was another solid set by the band, providing a good build up towards the festival’s climax.