AT THE DRIVE-IN needs no introducton. The iconic post hardcore band featuring singer Cedric Bixler-Zavala and guitar virtuoso Omar Rodríguez-López had been touring relentlessly and making waves for years and after a 17 year hiatus, and now they’re back with their first new album since 2000’s Relationship of Command! Inspired by sci-fi writings of Philip K. Dick, “in•ter a•li•a” wrestles with the band’s very roots and it feels like they kind of forced it. As predicted, gone are the more harsh, angular post hardcore elements and the backing screams by now-ex-member Jim Ward, leaving the structure based on a lot simplier ideas and straight up rock riffs and sanitized vocals. It was obvious AT THE DRIVE-IN faced disproportionately high expectations with this new release, but it doesn’t change the fact we remain fans of masterpieces without epilogues.
Says The Quietus‘ Timothy Archer,
“For all of Cedric’s talk of this being a “body of work” in the same vein as Relationship of Command, it just can’t be. That earlier record was the product of a band having grown up together: it was their cumulative statement. Inter Alia is the sound of a band trying to pick up where they left off, having taken different journeys along the way, and having spent a year jamming with a new guitarist replacing a founding member. Which isn’t to say that it’s unsuccessful, it’s just not the sequel to the band’s last album that it’s being billed as.”
… and it’s a great summary of how we feel about about “in•ter a•li•a”. Well played, unnecessarily revived.
AT THE DRIVE-IN will continue their touring schedule with more appearances in North America, Mexico, Europe and Australia, all detailed below.
Rodríguez-López commented on the band’s approach to writing for this record:
When you’re honoring the creative element, you’re very susceptible to going in any direction that might come in as an influence…But now we have to think about, Let’s see the personality of At the Drive-In, let’s see what the context is, and let’s see how we find a good middle ground between where we are now and what the band is. Like, Metallica can’t put out a reggae record, you know what I’m saying?
How was I thinking at the time?…When we were first talking about doing a new record, the first thing I did was to make a list: What were the movies I was watching? What were the books I was reading, and what was the music? So I dug up old mixtapes that we had in the van…It was a process of going and watching those films and rereading those books and listening to that music and then, oh, O.K. — then you’re in the world of it. Then everything else comes naturally.
AT THE DRIVE-IN tour dates: