When discussing the early pioneers of 2000s indie rock who continue to influence artists today, The Strokes are almost always the first to come to mind. Since their last studio album, “Comedown Machine” in 2013, The Strokes have been silent other than the “Future, Present, Past” EP in 2016 – until now.
“At The Door” was released on Feb. 11 and is the first single from their upcoming album, “The New Abnormal,” out on April 10. While the release caused quite an uproar from fans, many criticized the band for the new sound being too similar to lead-singer Julian Casablancas’ solo material and side project, The Voidz.
During The Strokes’ hiatus, Casablancas released two albums – “Tyranny” and “Virtue” – with The Voidz. The project divided the majority of his fanbase, as it was more synth-heavy and experimental than anything The Strokes put out in their almost two decades as a band. The overwhelmingly negative reaction reminded fans of when Arctic Monkeys released their last album, “Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino,” with parallels to the sound too closely resembling lead-singer Alex Turner’s side project, The Last Shadow Puppets.
“At The Door” is an emotional ballad of yearning, escaping and the unknown. Casablancas’ self-awareness is prevalent in the bridge, “Not tryna build no dynasty, I can’t see beyond this wall, but we lost this game so many times before.” Despite being slow, The Strokes have recently debuted new songs at shows that fans describe as their classic sound – one Pitchfork referred to as “trying to be a Strokes cover band.”
You can see The Strokes perform on March 14 at The Forum in Inglewood and listen to “The New Abnormal” on all streaming services April 10.