Julian Plenti – Julian Plenti Is….Skyscraper Julian Plenti – Julian Plenti Is….Skyscraper

Julian Plenti – Julian Plenti Is....Skyscraper

Julian Plenti – Julian Plenti Is....Skyscraper

Come ye, Interpol fans, gather round. Julian Plenti is the side project of Paul Banks, lead singer of moody post punk/indie band, Interpol. While at first the logic behind Julian Plenti is…. may seem questionable, scratch the surface and Skyscraper (That’s what i’m calling it from now on, the actual title’s a complete head melt) turns out to be quite an intriguing album.

The album starts off with the Evil esque “Only If You Run”, an opener which definitely still has one foot in the Antics period of Interpol. Soon though, the difference becomes clear. While the casual listener may initially wonder why Banks has chosen to play what are essentially a set of Interpol songs with different people, the reasoning soon becomes clear. Whilst it may seem like pointing out the obvious, these aren’t Interpol songs, because Interpol are a four piece band. Each has their role to perform. On Skyscraper, Banks is firmly the star of the show, and so he should be. Whilst the level of musicianship certainly doesn’t leave anything to be desired, Banks’ moody vocals are no longer paired with the choppy basslines of Carlos Dengler, or the throbbing drumming of Sam Fogarino. “The Fun That We Have” again isn’t miles away from Interpol, but Banks very much holds the spotlight. Not that his lyrics or vocal style have changed…..at all….but it’s the composition and overall atmosphere that comes with these songs that alters the mood. Title track (sort of) “Skyscraper”, is a sinister acoustic ballad, and the abrupt change in direction gives the impression that maybe Banks is making exactly the kind of music that he wants to.

“Games For Days” is great fun, and comes across as a slightly more sinister Bloc Party, around the time of A Weekend In The City. Highlight “Girl On The Sporting News” again helps to paint a lush gloomy atmosphere. Not to say that Skyscraper is a completely dull affair, throughout Banks manages to incorporate genuinely beautiful elements into his music which are not evident/necessary in some of Interpol’s catalogue.

Skyscraper is a surprisingly worthwhile listen, far from being the musical dabblery of the singer of a popular indie band, it is in fact a project of it’s own merit. Whilst the inevitable comparisons will be made, Skyscraper manages to craft a niche of it’s own, and while Banks is hardly pushing the envelope in his vocal style, he manages with Skyscraper to completely suck you in. Despite the daft new name.

Track listing:

“Only if You Run” – 3:49
“Fun That We Have” – 3:41
“Skyscraper” – 3:20
“Games for Days” – 3:57
“Madrid Song” – 2:08
“No Chance Survival” – 4:04
“Unwind” – 3:18
“Girl on the Sporting News” – 2:53
“On the Esplanade” – 3:41
“Fly as You Might” – 3:57
“H” – 2:39

Julian Plenti - Julian Plenti Is....Skyscraper, reviewed by Lemon on 2009-07-23T07:52:19-07:00 rating 3.9 out of 5

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