• Record Label: Matador
  • Release Date: Aug 20, 2002
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. 100
    For such a dark and brooding record, Turn on the Bright Lights is also unexpectedly thrilling, coasting on jagged minor-chord guitar melodies and huge emotional swells with a ton of high points along the way.
  2. Loss, regret, and a minor key brilliantly permeate jangling guitars and rhythmic and tonal shifts-- and although it's no Closer or OK Computer, it's not unthinkable that this band might aspire to such heights.
  3. Interpol mix the propulsive sonic backgrounds and emotional swells of early-'80s post-punk with unexpected bursts of melody and their own brand of wit to create one of themost exciting new sounds of the year. [23 Aug 2002, p.142]
  4. This record is no fun at all, the tension is rarely resolved, and -- oh no! -- it isn't exactly revolutionary, though some new shades of gray have been discovered. But you shouldn't allow your perception to be fogged by such considerations when someone has just done it for you and, most importantly, when all this brilliance is waiting to overwhelm you.
  5. Plainly stated, Turn on the Bright Lights is the album modern followers of post-punk have been waiting for.
  6. Their robe is cut from cloth that matters: melodic Peter Hook-like basslines; the divine shoegazer textures of My Bloody Valentine and Ride; a peppy, Strokes-like bounce; and a singer who's a dead ringer for Ian Curtis.
User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 272 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 2 out of 134
  1. Mar 3, 2011
    10
    possibly one of the greatest albums ever recorded. everyone stop comparing them to joy division. just because paul banks sings in a baritonepossibly one of the greatest albums ever recorded. everyone stop comparing them to joy division. just because paul banks sings in a baritone voice, it does not mean he is ripping off ian curtis. it just means he sings in a baritone voice. last time i checked joy division didnt use a ton of reverb, interpol does. interpol is way more melodic than joy division. and i do not see the similarities with ok computer. yeah its a sad dark album, but i wouldnt say that sad dark albums are exclusive to radiohead. lucky, paranoid android, karma police, climbing up the walls, exit music (for a film), and no surprises sound nothing like this album. stop comparing them. even if they are "ripping them off", they ripped them off in a brilliant way. kurt cobain admitted to ripping off the pixies on nevermind, no one will argue that that album is bad. turn on the bright lights is an amazing album. end of argument Full Review »
  2. Jun 10, 2012
    9
    Why are you users talking just about Joy Division and Radiohead? In fact I really found offensive when someone was talking about OK Computer.Why are you users talking just about Joy Division and Radiohead? In fact I really found offensive when someone was talking about OK Computer. Turn On... and OK Computer have nothing in common!! TELEVISION!! Does someone remember this band? Maybe the first band to create melodies based on two guitars? This is the main influence for every indie rock band in the world, specially for Interpol. And the "depressive" sensation? It came from Joy Division, obviously. Forget Radiohead! This is a totally different topic... Full Review »
  3. Dec 12, 2014
    10
    Sometimes as an adult you go back and revisit things 10 years later that you almost completely forgot about. Fortunately I did that today.Sometimes as an adult you go back and revisit things 10 years later that you almost completely forgot about. Fortunately I did that today. This album still holds up amazingly well in 2014. It's one of my favorite albums ever released and it really broadened my horizons when I was just stating to branch out and listen to some new things. They kind of doomed themselves in a way by releasing something so great as a debut - they could never hope to live up to it and their following releases always left me feeling disappointed. Interpol is not one of my favorite bands but this album ranks at the top as far as debuts go. In my opinion it has the best one two opening punch of any record and the final four songs are equally as impressive. Truly superb guitar layering, tone changes, and propulsive rhythms have a really hypnotic effect. Full Review »