Paul Banks - King Tut’s, Glasgow, Mon 21 Jan
A vaguely phoned-in performance from the Interpol singer formerly known as Julian Plenti
After Interpol announced an indefinite hiatus in 2011 following the departure of bassist Carlos Dengler, the period of uncertainty that followed, and almost welcome respite for the New York post-punk revivalists, allowed the opportunity for its members to pursue other musical projects. Most notably, lead vocalist Paul Banks, who explored a melting pot of electro-tinged pop ideas to some critical acclaim on last year's solo album Banks.
Tonight at King Tut’s, Banks, who also recorded solo material under the name Julian Plenti (a moniker he abandoned after just two releases, his 2009 solo debut, Julian Plenti Is Skyscraper and 2012 EP Julian Plenti Lives…) adorns his trademark baritone crooner role while draped in an all-black get-up. As his staccato guitar cuts above the ambient pop tones throughout, his set largely rides the neat plateau of a vaguely phoned-in performance, which may delight the fan boys in tow, but does little for those with an impartial perspective on his music. Despite taking its cues from Disintegration-era Cure in some places, it seems a bit too familiar at times; almost like an Interpol version 2.0, with somewhat underwhelming results. Recent single 'Young Again' and album tracks 'Over My Shoulder' and 'No Mistakes' are among the highlights in a set that largely lacks the momentum and tenacity of his previous outfit. Like Julian Casablancas before him – whose solo endeavours allowed him to stimulate his creative juices and then go on to rejuvenate a worn-out Strokes – let’s hope Banks doesn't get lost in solo limbo and can hopefully galvanise a renaissance period for his beloved New York outfit.