Tuesday, August 20, 2002

Interpol Turn on the Bright Lights released

Turn on the Bright Lights


Released: August 20, 2002

Peak: 158 US, 101 UK

Sales (in millions): 0.52 US, 0.1 UK, 1.0 world (includes US and UK)

Genre: post punk revival


Song Title [time] (date of single release, chart peaks) Click for codes to singles charts.

  1. Untitled [3:56]
  2. Obstacle 1 [4:11] (11/11/02, 41 UK)
  3. NYC [4:20] (4/14/03, --)
  4. PDA [4:59] (8/22/02, --)
  5. Say Hello to the Angels [4:28] (4/14/03, 65 UK)
  6. Hands Away [3:05]
  7. Obstacle 2 [3:47]
  8. Stella Was a Driver and She Was Always Down [6:28]
  9. Roland [3:35]
  10. The New [6:07]
  11. Leif Erikson [4:00]
All tracks written by Paul Banks, Daniel Kessler, Carlos Dengler, and Sam Fogarino.

Total Running Time: 48:56

The Players:

  • Paul Banks (vocals, rhythm guitar)
  • Daniel Kessler (guitar, backing vocals)
  • Carlos Dengler (bass, keyboards)
  • Sam Fogarino (drums, percussion)


4.156 out of 5.00 (average of 10 ratings)

Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About the Album:

Interpol is a post-punk revival rock band which formed in 1997 in Manhattan, New York. In June 2002, they released a three-track EP named Interpol. It contained the songs PDA and NYC, which would also appear on their debut album Turn on the Bright Lights, and Specialist, which was included as a bonus track to Australian and Japanese editions of the album.

The album was well received by critics with many citing the eerie similarity of Paul Banks’ voice to the late Ian Curtis of Joy Division. Blender’s Jonah Weiner said, “It’s almost as if Ian Curtis never hanged himself” WK while The Austin Chronicle’s Michael Chamy called Banks “a dead ringer for Ian Curtis.” WK NME’s Victoria Segal said the comparisons to Joy Division were “obvious and unmistakable.” WK Famed critic Robert Christgau wasn’t as impressed calling the comparisons to Joy Division “too kind.” WK

The band overall was compared positively to their influences. Billboard said they created an “homage to their particular vision of the ‘80s that stands proudly alongside the best of its idols.” WK The Village Voice’s Scott Seward said the band reminded him of “listening to Cure singles” WK while Chamy said the band incorporated “the divine shoegazer textures of My Bloody Valentine and Ride.” WK

The album has been credited with “helping define 2000s indie rock and…the New York-born post-punk revival scene, along with contemporaries such as the Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and TV on the Radio.” WK They have been cited as an influence on bands such as the Killers, Editors, and the xx. WK

Notes: A tenth anniversary edition added a second disc of 17 materials, including demos and recordings from a Peel session.

Resources and Related Links:

First posted 3/12/2022.

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