Dig Baton Rouge

A Mix of Blood and Beauty

By Pat Gunther


Poliça, the Minnesota brainchild of Ryan Olson and Channy Leanegh, is primed to drop by the Spanish Moon on April 13th. Since their last album Shulamith in 2013, Olson and co. have been making a case as one of America’s preeminent synthpop bands since their inception a little over four years ago. Despite their lack of efficient studio output, Poliça’s live shows are what continue to carry their reputation as a supremely fun show.

“Sometimes I’m dressing up, sometimes I’m not. Sometimes I cut my hair on tour and I destroy a good haircut because I’m sort of a performance artist just daily,” Leanegh told Reed Hunter of City Pages in 2014. “[I’m] kind of going back and forth between trying to figure out if I can play the game or if I want to fight the game, I guess.”

It’s Leanegh’s spontaneity and dedication to performance that allows Poliça to have such a wide following despite their relatively unknown mainstream status. Moreover, Poliça continues to push the boundaries with their messages, live shows, and even album artwork in an attempt to express themselves in an increasingly violent society.

“It’s a very violent society that we live in, so I was confused when like the image on our cover was censored,” Leanegh mentioned in reference to Shulamith’s censored record cover. “You look on iTunes and there’s some really violent-sounding music. My music isn’t really that, I don’t have anything specifically violent about my music. That cover was exploring the life of a woman that’s a mix of blood and beauty and the brutal existence of a woman.”

This exploration of themes or images people are “afraid” to portray helps Poliça stay true to their morals, even if fans aren’t thrilled with the decision.

With Poliça still potentially sitting on a third studio album, fans are content with their decision to come to them, wherever they are. But since the release of Shulamith, one can’t help but stave off their hankering for another delicious LP.

“I think I’m gonna take some time off,” Leanegh told Hunter. “We’ve had kind of the same release structure with the first record and the second record. We were recording the songs the moment they became songs and then played them out for a year. At the end of that year, after the record’s released, the songs are different.”

With fans eagerly anticipating a new LP, they’ll have to use this killer show to satiate their appetites until that day; whenever it may come.

With Poliça headlining next week, two acts that sandwich them will also be on the Spanish Moon’s bill — Delta Spirit and Mates of State will grace the Moon’s stage on April 8, and April, 14, respectively. So be sure to grab tickets at the door or online for an April extravaganza of eclectic and entertaining tunes that’ll be a lock to get you moving and grooving with some of that Louisiana spring excitement.


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