After a long break, At the Drive In return with in•ter a•li•a, doing a mix of the same good and bad things as before. The stay edgy and political here, but even as one will find some bold rhythms, there is also a lack of growth from the first track to the last.
This will suit ATDI fans just fine, but disappoint almost everyone else who might have thought with all the in between years they would have picked up some more genre intent in their style. In songs like “No Wolf Like the Present” and “Governed by Contagions”, they drive their solos fast over hard rock guitar, like in their better older numbers, but even here they don’t build enough, in the way a Mars Volta piece would. In others, such as “Continuum” they fall terribly flat, lacking nothing in virility, but a great deal in lasting melody, as these songs just jump about.
That said, there are some pleasing aspects about in•ter a•li•a still, as the catchy and driving parts are good as in tracks “TIlting at The Univendor”, “Incurably Innocent”, “Ghost-Tape No. 9”, and “Hostage Stamps”, and the lyrics are great shots at societal indifference in most songs such as “Governed by Contagions”. However, it will likely appeal mostly to their fanbase, and this may be the goal for At The Drive In. However, in•ter a•li•a just won’t be said to be a breakthrough or classic album.