2008 has already begun as one of the better years for shoegaze/dreampop
in recent memory. There are a good amount of eagerly awaited albums
on the horizon, including new records from Pia Fraus and The
Autumns, as well as reunion tours by originators Swervedriver
and My Bloody Valentine, and hidden amongst it all are a few
unknown gems that help to buoy the genre. The new record from Polydream
is one such hidden jewel.
From the first moments of Send Me To The Sun, Polydream fill
their songs with the unmistakable twists found in 90's Britpop and
'gaze, however the real twist comes on the realization that these
guys are from Wisconsin
or thereabouts. The production is sparkling
clear, guitars chiming and drums throbbing as perfection while the
vocalist's voice slips comfortably in and out of falsetto like the
best of Britain's pop stars. Opening track "Catch Me If You Can"
captures the anthemic rock spirit of such Britpop greats as Embrace,
while harboring some of the finest dreampop guitarwork of the new
millennium. "Dreaming Of" features reverb heavy female vocals
that add a nice spacey effect to the overall dreaminess of the song
before the band launches into a searing guitar solo break, really
showcasing their handle on the dynamic interplay of a song. The band
invokes the soaring majesty of American bands like The Autumns and
The Curtain Society on the record, but there is always that
underlying feeling of Brittiness. There are even songs like "In
The Daylight" where the band almost recalls Paisley Pop-era bands
like The Red House, mixing in a little bit of soft psychedelia
with the pop to create a memorable and highly enjoyable sound.
Shoegazers take note! Another American band is on the scene to keep
the dream alive. Take a moment to listen to a couple of tracks from
Polydream's Send Me To The Sun for a nice example of the phenomenon.
Maybe the epic 'gaze of "Everything Else Comes Of Life"
or the quiet refection of "Luster" will be the track that
makes you realize that, yes Victoria, there really is shoegaze still.
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