Idlewild – Interview Music (4 stars)

Idlewild – Interview Music

Second post-hiatus album from the Scottish indie favourites is a glorious opus

Apparently Scottish punk melodists Idlewild were so galvanised by the experience of working on their last album, Everything Ever Written (2015), that the five-piece were back in the studio working on this terrific follow-up mere days after its release. That spirit of enthusiasm for making music together resounds throughout their new LP, from the searing, drum-tumbling drive-rock of 'All These Words' (everything ever written, indeed), to the kaleidoscopic indie-gospel of 'Miracles' ('I'm still amazed that days follow days').

Interview Music is Idlewild's second post-hiatus album, and their reinvigorated line-up of founders Roddy Woomble (vocals), Rod Jones (guitars) and Colin Newton (drums) – alongside welcome additions Andrew Mitchell (aka Andrew Wasylyk) on bass, and Luciano Rossi (keyboards) – continues to bear rousing fruit. They're a band shook up, reinvented and revived, yet still rooted in the wayward and euphoric literary punk of their early days in Edinburgh's mid-90s DIY scene.

Woomble has suggested that many songs on Interview Music are about 'dreams and dreaming and the thoughts and ideas that can come from this state'. True to this, he explores and sings from various visionary vantage points throughout, from psychedelic prog-pop opener 'Dream Variations' ('I came, I saw, I changed my point of view'), to disco-punk chorale 'There's a Place for Everything', bass 'n' brass indie-stomp 'Mount Analogue', and closing piano ballad 'Lake Martinez' ('I feel fictional, go deeper into daydreams').

The title track, meanwhile, is a revelation: a five-minute trip through moody post-punk, melancholy classic pop, and some incendiary rock operatics that threaten to knock The Who out the park. It's a glorious opus from a hard-working, resilient group who, as Woomble recalls, 'formed a band and learned our own way'. They upturned our pop landscape and charts in the process. 'Imagine there's no ground'. he sings. It's easy if you try.

Out Fri 5 Apr on Empty Words.

Idlewild

Formed in 1995 the current line-up includes Roddy Woomble (lead vocals), Rod Jones (guitar), Andrew Mitchell (bass), Colin Newton (drums) and Luciano Rossi (keyboards). As well as releasing seven studio albums the band has supported some of the biggest names in indie rock including Ash, Placebo, Manic Street Preachers…

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