Polyphonic Spree - Wait EP Single Review
What a difference a couple of years make, particularly if you're The Polyphonic Spree.
It wasn't so long ago that they were the name on everybody's lips, the must-go-and-see-live band of 2002, as the 23-strong collective brought a new name to dexterous arrangements and visuals, as well as a handful of instantly hummable pop songs to boot.
Sadly, they only really had this handful of memorable tunes to their name, and despite the fascination behind their retrospective hippy ideals and Tim DeLaughter's inspirational prose, their star faded quicker than a Catherine wheel in the night sky on November 5th.
One trick ponies? 'fraid so.
So now we've moved on a tad to 2006, and in a way, so have the Spree. Only thing is, they've moved onto re-interpreting other people's songs, known in the game as the "cover version", and while their take on Tripping Daisy's (DeLaughter's old band, fact fans) 'Sonic Bloom' is infinitely delightful, their nonsensical trawl through Nirvana's 'Lithium' really does have to be heard to be believed, while the Psychedelic Furs' 'Love My Way' is reduced to a mere "Whatever?" in the context of its own boredom.
Of the two original songs here, 'Wait' is pretty much a continuation of what we've come to expect from the Spree, i.e., big happy-go-lucky choruses about love and life without a real hook to move it anywhere from the vicinity of Schmaltz Road while 'I'm Calling' sounds like an outtake from their 'Together We're Heavy' sessions, which it may well be.
Still, one thing they've got right is to call this EP 'Wait' - as in 'Wait' for the new Arcade Fire release, as that will show you how to do this kind of thing so much better.