Banks was born in England but his family left when he was three and he then lived in Michigan, Spain and Mexico. After graduation from New York University, where he studied English and Comparative Literature, he worked for major New York magazines before he decided to devote more time to his music.
During a break from Interpol, Banks released two albums under the name Julian Plenti but returned to his real name for his 2012 release, “Banks.”
This dreamy, atmospheric set features three songs from that album, and the resultant sound is a bit like R.E.M and a bit like Radiohead and is rich with electric guitars, synthesizer and Banks’ rich baritone vocal.
"Over My Shoulder" starts off with a solid beat but it isn't until the guitars kick in that the ghost of Peter Buck becomes apparent. Even the phrasing of the vocals sounds like early Michael Stipe.
"Arise, Awake" begins with a dreamlike guitar pattern and a buzzing not unlike an insect hovering, but the pace picks up about halfway through as the song gathers momentum and guitar arppegios guide us to the end.
Dizzying guitar opens "I'll Sue You" and the sound again seems influenced by Buck and Stipe but the song construction is a bit more complicated and brings Radiohead to mind.