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Interpol’s Carlos D. Calls Turn on the Bright Lights’ 15th Anniversary “a Painful Affair”

Interpol won’t be playing their Turn on the Bright Lights anniversary gigs with their original lineup. Bassist Carlos D., who left the band in 2010 for other creative pursuits, isn’t rejoining Interpol for the shows and has been mainly silent throughout the album’s 15th anniversary year. He finally decided to speak his mind in an essay for n+1, where he remembers making the album and likens it to being a “survivor of PTSD.”

Interestingly, Carlos D. alleges that neither his former bandmates nor their label Matador reached out to him for the anniversary shows. Shunned, the former bassist calls the anniversary a “painful affair.” Read the excerpt below (emphasis ours):

The anniversary of Turn on the Bright Lights is a painful affair for me: I feel like I’m watching my kids graduate from college, but I haven’t been invited to the ceremony. Neither the band nor their label has reached out to me for any official Turn on the Bright Lights-related business, which is surprising. Even though today I remain, for better or for worse, estranged from my former bandmates, 25 percent of that album’s DNA is mine. At the same time, I’m not worried about Interpol’s legacy: I know it’s in good hands, and the anniversary will flourish without my input. My decision—as an artist and a member of a collective—to leave a band like Interpol, with all of its triumphs and failures, was one of the single biggest decisions of my life. I will stand by it without regret until my last breath. But there’s nothing like a round number to kick up a thousand anguished “what ifs.” I can hear them buzzing around in my head, like a horde of wasps.

Carlos isn’t overestimating his role: In a 2007 SPIN cover story, frontman Paul Banks admitted that Interpol wouldn’t exist if one of its members left. But they still do, of course. Interpol is performing Turn on the Bright Lights in full in New York’s Bowery Ballroom tonight followed by another show in Forest Hills Stadium tomorrow. Read Carlos D.’s essay over at n+1.