Polar – Nova review

The ingenuity and creativity of a band finding their feet. 8/10Polar

Formed in London in 2009, ‘post-hardcore’ band Polar continue their interstellar trajectory with Nova. “A nova is described as the brightest burning star and we felt that this album was going to be our brightest material”, guitarist Fabian Lomas explains.

Following on from 2016’s No Cure No Saviour, the band return more ‘slick, sophisticated and savage in equally devastating measure’. With this new found maturity and a clearer outlook on life (also the recent resignation of drummer Nick Jones), this is a reflection of a band in metamorphosis, but not turmoil. It is an evolution of their sound, a honing while being less traditionally metalcore and more experimental.

 “This album has gone lot of deeper into creativeness. The heavier bits and heavier and the choruses are a lot more interesting. It does very much more pop orientated too, but in our own unique way. Where a lot of bands go lighter as they move along, we have arguably got heavier while also being more accessible. There are so many different forms of being heavy after all.” POLAR.

Mære opens as a pulsating instrumental that slowly builds in its 47 seconds into the hard hitting Devil. Dark and pounding, seething with rage and anger. There is a richness of sound from the addition of synthesizers carried from the opening and a greater variation in styles, with the raw passion of Adam Woodford, undiminished.

Cradle commences with the dual guitars of Tom Green and Fabian Lomas  melodic yet frenetic and given a  tribal edge by combining gang style vocals in support of Woodford. There are some gentle passages that contrast wonderfully and enhance the emotive sense of the track. Highly accomplished and this will transpose epically into a live environment.

Drive was the first single released and is a monstrous slab of anthemic unification “These are our words sung forever, can we sing this together.” With elements of electronica, industrial but predominantly not straying too far from the roots of Polar as to alienate existing fans.

“Releasing ‘Drive’ is a huge step forward for POLAR, the emotion that has gone into the new record is 100% real. We feel we are no longer the band that you all knew, this is the beginning of something pure. ‘Drive’ is a symbol of the maturity of where the band is and where we are as people.”

 Check out Drive here

“‘Adore’ is about personal circumstances changing and life pulling you away from the people you love and how you willing to fight to keep the people you love close to you, regardless how far the distance grows between you.” Raw and emotional it bombasts the listener with multi layered chanting and intense riffery. Sonder slows the pace with a sweeping orchestral serenade worthy of any chill out album. With a subtle heart beat and electronic swells it’s unexpected but a great bridge into  Amber. Opening with a vocal line that sounds as a radio, this is an open letter to a dear friend that committed suicide while the band was on tour.  To tell her that things could have been different, they could have changed. It’s very touching, but hard-hitting.

Prey commences as it means to continue, brutally and unapologetically. The synths add colour and soundscape to a ferocious track. Then Dusk approaches, gently and soothingly with female led vocals. Ethereal, gentle and haunting but then Midnight strikes with blood-curdling screams. Claustraphobic, intense, unnerving and based on a genuine and terrifying incident of sexual assault.

Midnight is a song about coming of age and sexual awakening. It is written about a personal experience I had at 15 which forced me to understand sex mentally and physically in a unnatural way. This song has been therapeutic to me and I hope it allows people who hear it to be honest with themselves and deal with their inner demons. Our new album ‘Nova’ musically and lyrically has been therapeutic for all us, we came to point where we all needed a release and this is the product of that. We hope listeners can relate to this record and make steps to finding inner peace as much as us.” 

Brother drops the pace for an almost a progressive feel, a hip-hop beat and soft vocals astonishing, the more familiar tones return for the expected assault, but now with euphoric, 80’s electronica hints. Swells, strings, harmonies and a liberal sprinkling of talent demonstrate the ingenuity and creativity of a band finding their feet.

“Our aim has always been to be on an upward trajectory. We want this to be the next big step up. We write every album as if it’s our last. That’s the best way that any band can write an album because that’s how you get your best material out. Everyone has stepped up and put forward something creative. It’s the deepest we have ever gone. If you have to turn around and say ‘well that’s it’, you have to be able to say that you gave it your best shot. We need to aim for the stars and land on the moon. ‘Nova’ is basically going to elevate us.” Fabian Lomas

Polar Nova

Tracklist:

  1. Mære
  2. Devil
  3. Cradle
  4. Drive
  5. Adore
  6. Sonder
  7. Amber
  8. Prey
  9. Dusk
  10. Midnight
  11. Brother

In May Polar will head out on a tour of Europe following the release of the album, support will come from Tripsitter.

Polar Nova album release tour
03.05.19 UK London @ Boston Music Room
04.05.19 Belgium Antwerp @ Kavka
05.05.19 Germany Hamburg @ Hafenklang
06.05.19 Germany Köln @ MTC
07.05.19 Germany Nürnberg @ Z-Bau
08.05.19 Czech Rep Prague @ Underdogs
09.05.19 Germany Berlin @ Musik & Frieden
10.05.19 Germany Leipzig @ Naumanns
11.05.19 Germany Essen @ Cafe Nova
12.05.19 Germany Hannover @ Lux
13.05.19 Germany Munich @ Backstage
14.05.19 Switzerland Aarau @ Kiff
15.05.19 Germany Wiesbaden @ Schlachthof

Order the new album Nova via Amazon on CD or digital download.

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