Reporting Natalie Nyhus
(credit: photos by Stacy Schwartz)
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Minnesota’s music scene is hot with new bands. And one of those, Polica, is grabbing national attention.
Their psychedelic sounds have been haunting airwaves for just eight months, and they’re already selling out venues.
The experimental project is the result of a two-day studio session between captivating vocalist Channy Leaneagh and producer Ryan Olsen.
“It’s a different project than four friends getting together and making music in their basement, which is awesome,” said Channy. “This is just a completely different experience where we’ve sort of been hired to complete a task.”
The hired hands are two drummers and a bass player who were picked to be a part of Polica, which means policy — a fitting name.
“There’s a certain framework that we’re trying to work within. So that, in a sense, is why policy rings true,” explained drummer Drew Christopherson.
Despite the structured policies of the band, their sound is very free. Bass player Chris Bierden described their music.
“The drums are really heavy. The electronics can be very delicate. Channy’s voice is soaring. The base is soulful and funky at times. It’s strange that it all works together.”
Since their inception, Polica sold out their CD release show at First Avenue’s main room on Valentine’s Day.
Grammy winner and best new artist Bon Iver name-checked them in Rolling Stone, saying, “They’re the best band I’ve ever heard.” Rap superstar Jay-Z posted their music video to his blog.
“The fact that they’re encouraging us and coming to see our shows and buying records, it’s exciting,” said Channy.
Polica’s sound is hard to describe, but they have been compared to Portishead, a popular English band that’s been around since the early ’90s.
The vocals are heavily auto-tuned, an affect that is polarizing to listeners. Lead singer Channy has a spectacular voice, so some people don’t like the distortion, while others love it.
Next for Polica is a two-month U.S. tour. There’s no word on their next show in town. Their debut CD “Give You the Ghost” just came out last week and is available on iTunes.