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El Pintor Image
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 141 Ratings

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  • Summary: Self-produced, the first release in four years for the New York rock band is also its first without bassist Carlos Dengler and features contributions from Secret Machines' Brandon Curtis, Jellyfish's Roger Joseph Manning, Jr., and Bon Iver's Rob Moose.
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Top Track

All the Rage Back Home
When she wept that love come over my head about Oh, the feelings And she wept, hold me again, I made no sound Oh, the beating And she swore love is... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. Sep 9, 2014
    91
    At a concise 10 tracks clocking in right at 40 minutes, there doesn’t seem to be much fat to trim on this record.
  2. 85
    Throughout, the refreshed use of light and dark is notable and works. There is contrast and there is colour.
  3. Sep 8, 2014
    80
    A return to form, it brims with fresh ideas, in everything from the looser production to the chordal detours that suggest the trio is ready to tweak its formula.
  4. 75
    Ultimately El Pintor feels a like a blast of icy fresh air after a sticky, sweltering summer’s day.
  5. Sep 11, 2014
    70
    Even if it doesn't have as much of the jagged need that sparked their best work, El Pintor is Interpol's most consistent album since Antics; fans who love the band for its pure sound will probably enjoy it more than those looking for stop-you-in-your-tracks moments.
  6. Sep 9, 2014
    65
    El Pintor is ultimately more pleasurable than it is painful, enough of a distraction to recall how important Interpol seemed at one time and how they can still pull off the illusion of importance after all these years.
  7. Magnet
    Sep 18, 2014
    45
    Sadly, "Everything Is Wrong" announces another second-half fade, the back side congealing into the same zombie histrionics that sank Interpol. [No. 113, p.57]

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 17
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 17
  3. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Sep 9, 2014
    10
    Interpol is at a new peak. El Pintor is like a pleasant combination of the ,,TOTBL"-styled use of guitar and the splendid, yet ominousInterpol is at a new peak. El Pintor is like a pleasant combination of the ,,TOTBL"-styled use of guitar and the splendid, yet ominous songwriting of Our Love to admire. There are several new, thrilling experiments on the old and time-tested Interpol-esque sounds, most prominent on Same Town, New Story and Twice as hard. Interpol tries new, more eclectronic based approaches and gets rewarded for it. It´s definitely Interpol at core, but still not the same Interpol everyone expected. A splendid album.

    (PS: The Tiny Mix Tapes-Review is the most biased review of an album i´ve read so far. if you want to write a good, yet critical review, look at the one the critic on Pitchfork wrote. I just felt the need to say that.)
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  2. Sep 11, 2014
    10
    Interpol made another fantastic album. This is one of their best works, there are amazing guitars, an intense drumming, the powerful bass andInterpol made another fantastic album. This is one of their best works, there are amazing guitars, an intense drumming, the powerful bass and the moving vocals. It's an accessible record, full of great dark songs. It's raw and rhythmic, as opposed to the metaphysical quiet of the precedent album. Expand
  3. Sep 22, 2014
    9
    Well this band always have had good albums, and this album El Pintor, is good sounds like Turn on the Bright Lights, but also have a differentWell this band always have had good albums, and this album El Pintor, is good sounds like Turn on the Bright Lights, but also have a different sound, like said Paul Banks, in some songs sound different because Carlos Dengler left the band, and the want to sound different. Expand
  4. Sep 16, 2014
    9
    The new Interpol album is a triumphant return to form (albeit not quite hitting the melancholic heights of "Turn on the bright lights", whichThe new Interpol album is a triumphant return to form (albeit not quite hitting the melancholic heights of "Turn on the bright lights", which when I moved to NYC in 2002 was truly zeitgeist-defining). For a band that sounded so utterly spent and on the brink of collapse when I last saw them in July 2011, they sound rejuvenated in their own distinctive tightly-wound style. Yes, it sounds unmistakably Interpol-ish, but then that was perhaps always going to be the most important point. Expand
  5. Sep 9, 2014
    9
    In my opinion El Pintor is not a "return to form" as a lot of people say. Interpol didn't lose the form, they just evolved into somethingIn my opinion El Pintor is not a "return to form" as a lot of people say. Interpol didn't lose the form, they just evolved into something quieter and more atmospheric.
    This album is just a proof that they can go back to an upbeat sound without losing the charm and the elegance.
    But I differ from all the people (and critics) saying this is Interpol going back to their roots. The album doesn't even sound like ToTBL. It kind of sounds like the album that should have been released between Antics and OLTA.

    I might be one of the few Interpol fans that think that Antics is better than ToTBL, and as a fan of the band I think El Pintor is at the same level of those two records.
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  6. Jul 22, 2015
    8
    The future looked bleaker than usual for Interpol after the release of their eponymous 4th album. Mixed reception for the record and theThe future looked bleaker than usual for Interpol after the release of their eponymous 4th album. Mixed reception for the record and the departure of integral bass player Carlos D looked like the race was run for the band. Amazingly, with their backs to the wall, the remaining members have managed to pull off their best piece of work in a decade. It's not as fresh sounding as their genius debut nor as powerful as follow up "Antics", but there isn't a weak track to be found on "El Pintor", something that you could not say about their previous 2 albums. Every tracks has the feel of a band with renewed purpose and energy. The long break since their last album paid off dividends. I won't pick out highlights as the whole record is worth checking out and fits together superbly. Glad to have you back Interpol Expand
  7. Sep 12, 2014
    7
    I can't help looking back at TOTBL whenever these guys put out new material. With each release I hope with all my heart to get knocked out myI can't help looking back at TOTBL whenever these guys put out new material. With each release I hope with all my heart to get knocked out my chair the same way their debut album did. Those songs caught you off guard with mind-blowing changes in rhythm and melody. Hardly no song in there was straight-forward. That said, does El Pintor accomplish all of this glory? Sadly no, but not without respectable effort. Most importantly, I feel this record suffers greatly from the absence of Carlos D bass lines. Paul Banks does the job alright, but I feel like the bass is just hanging in the back, going along timidly with the rest. It's definitely there, but it's straight-forward, it's lukewarm even. The guitar melodies are beautiful, but it feels dry a lot of times and within each individual song, it also lacks a bit of creativity and variety. What I mean is that, while listening to this album, I am constantly imagining how they could have gone a different path in many sections; shake those guitar riffs/melodies up a little bit instead of just plainly repeating it over and over. Did I dislike this album then? Absolutely no, it's a very good listen overall and makes me glad to see them back together recording good stuff. Paul falsettos are a very welcome addition, I think. It may be a little bit too much sometimes, but still. I'd like to point out a few songs I am truly digging: All the Rage Back Home, My Desire, Everything is Wrong and Ancient Ways. Ancient Ways is my number one: it's cacophonous yet positively so: it's chaotic and the drums are punchy and fast. Expand

See all 17 User Reviews