Interpol's "Marauder" is a strong beginning with a new producer.

Interpol's "Marauder" is a strong beginning with a new producer. Credit: Matador Records



BOTTOM LINE Harnessing both dark and light to tell a gripping story.

Something is different in Interpol’s sixth album, “Marauder” (Matador), though many of the building blocks of the New York rockers’ sound remained intact.

Singer Paul Banks’ deep voice is as haunting as ever, especially in the album’s darker moments like the first single, “The Rover,” where he declares, “It’s my way or they all leave.” Daniel Kessler’s guitar remains spiky and crisp. It may be tempting to attribute the change to Interpol’s decision to work with an outside producer — Dave Fridmann, best known for his work with the Flaming Lips — who asked them to use analog tape rather than digital recording to create a more urgent, live sound and that certainly ramps up the intensity level throughout the album. However, it’s the change in Sam Fogarino’s drumming that really makes the difference.

His dance groove on “Stay in Touch” gives the unsettling tale of a love triangle a bit of uplifting swagger. His bouncy beat on “If You Really Love Nothing” makes it all sound less bleak, while his cymbal work drives “Flight of Fancy” to more hopeful ground. The resulting duality makes “Marauder” Interpol’s strongest album since its debut.

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