Polyphonic Spree Review

The UniLife Magazine website was created before the first edition went to print, and I wrote a mixture of articles to generate interest in the site.

It has been argued by reviewers for decades that great pop music must have a hint of sadness. Something to give the music weight and make it more memorable than its bubbly counterpart. The Polyphonic Spree spent two hours proving this theory wrong with a mixture of loud and bright originals, as well as, erm, loud and bright covers that still meant something once the band had left the stage.

Wikipedia describes The Polyphonic Spree as a “choral symphonic rock” band, but a much easier way to describe them is a band with heaps of people, making loud pop music. And there are certainly a lot of people in the band, with the reduced-numbers touring band still consisting of 17 members.

The show was presented by Southern Comfort and the venue was given a carnivale theme with hats, headdresses and beads being given away before the show. Seeing hundreds of people dressed in extravagant feather hats must have been an interesting sight for the band’s first ever show in Adelaide.

When a show begins with two of the band’s biggest hits (‘Hold Me Now’ & ‘Reach For The Sun’) it is often a bad sign that the material is going to run dry fairly soon. These fears were washed away the moment the horn section blasted into ‘Live & Let Die’ by Paul McCartney and lead singer Tim DeLaughter started dancing like a dolphin that had suddenly found itself upon land.

Parading through the crowd for their encore in white robes which have made some people believe The Polyphonic Spree is a religious cult (they’re not) and releasing a second wave of balloons from the high Thebarton Theatre ceiling, neither band nor audience wanted the show to end. The band even told everyone where they were going after the show if they wanted to meet up later.

The show was a very happy way to spend a few hours, however if better advertised I believe it could have become one of those ‘were you there?’ moments for Adelaide. The Polyphonic Spree don’t tour very often and even with only a small knowledge of the band you will have a good time. Just get used to super-liminal advertising from Southern Comfort.

Actually, I could use a drink.