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Paul Banks' Ultimate Playlist


It's been 12 years since Interpol's first release, but they're still going strong, with their fifth album, El Pintor, emerging last month to critical acclaim.

Firmly established as one of New York's most-loved bands, they've taken their post-punk sound and developed it over the years, whilst building a huge live following.

We caught up with singer, guitarist and (for the latest album, at least) bassist Paul Banks to talk music and put together his Ultimate Playlist. Read on to discover his selections and the stories behind them.

Listen to the whole playlist on Spotify

El Pintor is out now, they tour the UK in February (dates sold out). For more info, head to interpolnyc.com

Favourite Movie Soundtrack Song

"This is very tricky, but I'm gonna go with the first one that comes to me: You Belong To Me as performed by Bob Dylan on the Natural Born Killers Soundtrack. Just a great example of his incredible guitar playing and a testament to "later" Dylan's vocal texture - fucking grizzled. OR, Jenny's Theme from Kids by Lou Barlow."

Favourite Sad Song

"Expecting To Fly - Buffalo Springfield. Deeply sad tone to this song, and very atmospheric. Incredible mood piece, hard to describe but to me it sounds like the afterlife."

Favourite Song From Your childhood

"Hrmm... Maybe Golden Earring's Twilight Zone. This was my first favorite song, like when I was 5 years old. Used to love love love when this came on the radio, and it really stretched my brain as a little kid trying to figure out what the hell they were talking about."

Favourite Club Anthem

"I don't really go to clubs... so I don't know. But a mixer buddy just played me a track Ronson did recently with Mystikal which is going to shatter the world."

Ronson Mystikal

Favourite Song Nobody Else Has Heard Of

"Motel Room - Vigilantes of Love. My buddy had this on a mixtape when we drove across the US when I was 17. He didn't know who it was by. And it wasn't until years later when the internet really showed up that I was able to find out who wrote it. My favorite lyric is, "the decorator oughta get two consecutive life terms for stuff like this"."

Favourite Lyric from a Song

"Every lyric in the song, Thieves in the Night by Black Star. I don't think it gets any better than this. In hip hop or any genre, this is about as strong as lyrics get.

Here's an excerpt: "This life is only temporary but the soul is eternal/separate the real from the lie, let me learn ya/Not strong, only aggressive cuz the power ain't directed/that's why we is subjected to the will of the oppressor/Not free, we only licensed/Not live, we just exciting/Cause the captors own the masters to what we writing/Not compassionate, only polite - we well trained/Our sincerity's rehearsed at this stage, it's just a game/Not good, but well behaved/Cause the cameras survey most of the things that we think do or say/We chasing after death just to call ourselves brave/When every day next man meet with the grave/I give a damn if any fan recall my legacy/I'm trying to live life in the sight for God's memory/Like that y'all.../Hiding like thieves in the night from life/Illusions of oasis making you look twice"."

Favourite Current Song

"Bof. Current current? How about Worst Behavior by Drake? That's not current anymore. I'm the worst person to ask about current music."

Favourite One Hit Wonder

"Funkytown by Lipps Inc. I had to just google "one-hit wonders" because I don't really know any off the top of my head. I do love Funkytown, so you know, that counts. Although, I used to love Too Much Love by Bros. Maybe they aren't one hit wonders. Did you know one of the dudes from Bros is now an actor who plays a total badass in Hellboy II? I shit you not. He's great."

Favourite Song From Your Own Music

"I'm gonna guess we're talking Interpol and not my solo work. So, I'd say The New from our first album. Always been one of my favorite songs, and just represents a real freedom that existed in our early writing - It came from a place somewhere between not knowing what we were doing, and knowing EXACTLY what we were doing. It's pure, and I love that track."

(Images: Rex)



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