In May 2010, shortly after the completion of Interpol’s self-titled fourth album, bassist Carlos D announced his immediate departure from the band. While the remaining members carried on without him, there’s no denying his absence has had a sizable impact: After the band completed touring behind the record in mid-2011, they went on an extended hiatus for the next few years.
Flash-forward to 2014, and Interpol is set to complete its triumphant return with next week’s release of El Pintor. In a way, the album’s mere existence is a bright spot, an indication that the band turned what could have been a career-ending loss into creative steam. However, there may still be some residual animosity towards their former bassist, as the band recently revealed that they haven’t spoken to Carlos D since his abrupt exit.
“If I were 10 years younger, maybe I’d go and snoop around, check out what he’s up to,” drummer Sam Fogarino told NME. “But no, I’m pretty in and out there nowadays.” The band’s only source of contact has been through associates and mutual friends.
Despite the revelation, Fogarino was quick to explain that the band was grateful for Carlos D’s contributions. For El Pintor, frontman Paul Banks took over bass duties, and though he’s capable, Fogarino said Carlos D’s bass work remains a pivotal component of the band’s legacy. “What Carlos brought to the band became a huge part of the sound,” Fogarino said. “You couldn’t take it away. Paul had a lot of respect for that. He knew whatever he did had to respect that. It couldn’t be a template thing.”
In an interview in 2010, Fogarino claimed Carlos D left because he hated life on the road and “really, really didn’t like the bass.” At the time, fans and members of the media speculated that his departure would result in Interpol’s eventual split, but Banks maintained that he was certain of the band’s continued existence. “We’d made an album,” he told NME. “There was just no doubt in my mind that we were going to go out and play that tour.”
Read the full interview here.
El Pintor is due out September 9th via Matador, but it’s currently available for streaming. Below, check out Interpol with Carlos D performing “Evil” back in 2008.