Polvo - Siberia (Digipak CD)

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During their initial run from 1990-1998, Polvo crafted a sound so fantastically obstinate and so perfectly cockeyed that its DNA is essentially resistant to mediocrity or repetition. On Siberia, that sound feels more limber and more aerodynamic than ever. Some of that is owed to a looser approach. "Preparing for In Prism, we labored over that material pretty intensively," explains founding guitarist Ash Bowie. "A lot of the songs on this album were not rehearsed much at all. I'd like to think this album has a few more adventurous moments."
An obvious point of comparison would be to Today's Active Lifestyles, released - perhaps not coincidentally - exactly 20 years ago. Where that album thrived on a nervous, coiled energy,Siberia feels more surefooted, more poised and controlled. It's the work of a band that's been here before, but the experience has only made them more at ease. Siberia is a record that's humming with confidence, the sound of a band with nothing to prove, but proving it anyway.

One of the most popular and accomplished bands in the arty, noisy rock genre, POLVO revels in dissonant, intricately layered guitars that often employed alternate tunings; odd, off-kilter rhythms; an emphasis on dense sonic texture; and unorthodox song structures that, nonetheless, are often unconventionally melodic.

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Track listing

  1. Total Immersion
  2. Blues is Loss
  3. Light, Raking
  4. Changed
  5. The Water Wheel
  6. Old Maps
  7. Some Songs
  8. Anchoress

Review

Chapel Hill indie rock veterans Polvo have used time away to reflect, refine, and re-energize - and have thus come out the other side a more intuitive band than ever before. The band's second post-reformation record, Siberia, drives the point home even further. - 4/5