Whereas New York fashion plate quartet Interpol's brooding 2002 debut, Turn on the Bright Lights, was ladled with reverb-laden post-punk, the band's sophomore entry Antics is finely honed pop. The dense barrage of spiritedly sawed guitar hits glistening strides while buoyed by bombastic four-on-the-floor, tension-building, fevered breaks, and the bass throb now borders on thrusting in songs such as "Slow Hands," "Public Pervert," and "C'mere." Characteristically tailored, twitching hooks rise to the fore only on "Evil," "Narc," and "Length of Love." Singer Paul Banks's formerly fighting-the-tide vocals now emphasize expressive melody over Ian Curtis monotone. Evolving in its own eddy, Interpol seems to have thrived underneath the bright lights, and is well-suited to flourish further in the wake of Franz Ferdinand, stellastarr*, The Killers, The Stills, et al.


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