Without shit-chat or gimmicks, Interpol bring a classy, understated party to Glastonbury

A good time, all the time.

Tonight marks Interpol’s fourth time at Glastonbury. From the post-punk noir of their debut ‘Turn On The Bright Lights’ when they first graced Worthy Farm in 2003, to the more full-bodied return in the ‘Antics’ era in 2005 to their last as they launched the polished ‘El Pintor’ in 2014.

Watch our full video interview with Interpol below

“When we arrived, we brought an electrical thunderstorm out,” guitarist Dan Kessler tells us backstage about their last appearance, when we caught up before played tonight. “They stopped the festival, which was a very rare moment for Glastonbury because it was just too dangerous and they had to wait it out. There were all these storms and the sun came out. It was really beautiful.”

Tonight, as they headline a stage at Worthy Farm for the first time in the John Peel tent, we ask Kessler what they’re going to do to truly own Glastonbury 2019 when up against Stormzy and Tame Impala.

“What are we not gonna do?” is his reply. Amen. Opening with the summer banger ‘C’Mere’, Interpol kick off a refined and festival-primed set. ‘If You Really Love Nothing’ from their latest album ‘Marauder’ displays both the arena-ready scale and paranoid claustrophobia that they’ve developed over the last 20 years, ‘Say Hello To The Angels’ from their hallowed debut showcases the unpolished promise and full potential that they had from the off, the ‘Antics’ cuts (especially the howling fervour saved for ‘Evil’, ‘Slow Hands’ and even the underrated slowburning chug of ‘Not Even Jail’) just glow with warmth. Then the recent single ‘A Fine Mess’ bristles with an energy and violence that leaves you itching to look around their next sharp left turn.

Interpol, live at Glastonbury 2019
Interpol, live at Glastonbury 2019

Interpol, live at Glastonbury 2019

“This is about taking the party by the horns,” frontman Paul Banks recently told NME of the drive behind their new material. That feel-good spirit seems to instill all that Interpol are about these days. Talk is kept to a minimum. “That was ‘The Rover’, very nice,” is as far as Banks’ banter goes. But they don’t need shit-chat or gimmicks. This is classy, understated showmanship. Between Kessler’s frenzied left foot, the dancing glitterball lights and the artful constant build of tension you can almost pierce, the current Interpol set is a good time, all the time. This time, they were the storm.

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Interpol’s setlist was:

If You Really Love Nothing
Public Pervert
The Heinrich Maneuver
Say Hello to the Angels
Fine Mess
Take You on a Cruise
All the Rage Back Home
Rest My Chemistry
The Rover
Slow Hands
The New
Not Even Jail
Obstacle 1