September 22, 2020

Interpol– Marauder – Matador

By Kristi Kates | Sept. 29, 2018

Also a half-dozen albums in, New York’s Interpol is back from its trek upstate, where the band worked with Dave Fridmann to develop this collection, highly influenced by the soul-funk side of the musical spectrum, much at the suggestion of Fridmann himself. The swinging beats of the album’s opening number, “If You Really Love Nothing,” launches this funky approach with confidence. It’s an interesting shift for the otherwise sharp-melodied outfit. Additional highlights include “The Rover” with its bluesy feel, and the wry “Party’s Over.” ***

The Kooks–Let’s Go Sunshine – LC
Indie popster band The Kooks is back with its ridiculously catchy psychedelic pop tracks, which sound inspired by the likes of The Libertines or perhaps a British version of The Killers. While its not taking any particularly big stylistic leaps here, this fifth album recaptures and brings forward the energy of the band’s 2006 debut album, especially on live corker “All the Time” and the droll humor of “Tesco Disco.” The Kooks can get sentimental, too, as evidenced by the amiable vacation-ready sounds of “Honey Bee.” ***

Wild Nothing– Indigo– Captured Tracks
Dream pop guru Jack Tatum sticks to his lo-fi approach on his debut as Wild Nothing, with opener “Letting Go” pulling together synthesized strings, tapping drum riffs, and a misty feel akin to trippy ’60s-era psychedelic movies. He applies that same filter to tracks like “Oscillation,” practically turning the guitar tracks into synths through careful modulation, and later channeling early Fiona Apple for backing tracks on “The Closest Thing to Living.” Effective as both a focused listen and as pleasant background music. *** 

Jake Shears–Jake Shears– FJ Records
The Scissor Sisters frontman steps away from the band to craft a solo debut album for himself, much of it pulling sounds from Shears’ new home base in New Orleans. There’s a lot of soulful songwriting and yes, jazzy horns on these tracks, which effectively, if quirkily, combine both the Sisters’ disco-ready beats with a heaping side of Deep South sounds. “Creep City” is perhaps the tune that most closely hews to the Sisters’ sound; Shears steps farther away on infectious tracks like “Good Friends.” ** ½


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