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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Interpol
Antics
Matador

Rating: 8/10 ?


October 1, 2004
Hold on to your exclamation points, armchair critics, despite what you might have heard. "Sophomore slump!" "The British are coming!" It's all a bit much, especially since there's no reason to fear.

If Antics had come first, you'd have no doubt heard writers remark about Interpol "having a perfect album in them, just waiting to burst." That album, of course, came already in the form of Turn On the Bright Lights, and while it has proven itself an impossible act to follow, Antics is still a great album by a fantastic band who set their own bar exceedingly high.

Antics is a hazy affair, billowing and paced, and more observant than ever. It has a sense of wide-eyed optimism, even in its gloomiest moments, that builds on Interpol's expansive vision. While reserved and slow in places, Antics never gets bogged down by its own weight or ambition; it is an album of wisdom and contentment, following from what the band has already accomplished.

Standouts such as "Narc," "Slow Hands," "Not Even Jail" and "Length of Love" should afford some instant gratification to their curious, expectant fanbase - these are the tracks that most closely resemble Turn On the Bright Lights, be they elliptical, controlled, danceable, dangerous or intrusive - but the rest of the album finds satisfaction in its sleeper status. Antics covers a lot of ground, mostly when turning inward and reflecting.

The dreamy, stinging opener, "Next Exit" sidles contrastingly up to the world-worn "Evil," where threat and exhaustion bubble uncomfortably under the surface. It may be more challenging to relate, as an audience, to such noticeable mood swings, and yet Antics seems to beg for even more interaction than its predecessor. As a result, the album seems more cerebral and less reactionary.

"Take You On a Cruise" is a perfect illustration of this feeling, as it flawlessly exemplifies its title, but in a way one might not immediately expect: it feels like a tale of deportation; its narrator sad, homesick and beaten, his eyes full of tears and persistent beauty. Its perseverance is unquestionably complex; despite the saddened tone at its center, there's an awed quality that can't help but carry on. There's a consistent, oppositional force throughout many of the tracks. "A Time to be So Small" ends the album with the punctuated syllables of the word "cadaver," and while morbidly affecting, it nonetheless draws you in with intrigue. "C'mere" may have a jagged, burnt-out tone, but there's still vibrancy. Antics shows, time and again, that Interpol is still humbled and inspired by their creative spirit and will do what they can to delve deeper.

Beyond all this, the band's noted Pixies worship and love of shady New Wave are in keeping with their overall style, and are as consistently impressive as ever. The edge is still there - the thrill of romance and the wily, distorted take on elegance. It may not be as immediately explosive or surprising as Interpol's legendary entry into the scene, but Antics gives further credibility and purpose for them to stay.

Reviewed by Sarah Peters
A former music editor and staff writer for LAS, Sarah Peters recently disappeared. Perhaps one day she will surface again, who knows.

See other reviews by Sarah Peters

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