After taking Australia by storm with a string of sold out tours, the guitar-drums duo Polish Club prove that they are one to watch with their first album Alright Already. Whilst not quite flawless, the electrifying soul-punk vibes across all fourteen tracks makes it a strong debut and a great addition to any summer playlist.
Coming off the back of supporting Royal Blood’s first arena dates in Australia, David Novak (vocals, guitar) and John-Henry Pajak (drums) have come a long way from playing in their garage back in 2015. With the hopes of carrying their rising success overseas, Polish Club have already made waves in the US and will be bringing the party to venues in the UK for the first time this August.
“Their songs aim to make you feel good”
The opening track ‘Where U been’ sets the bar high for the rest of the album, introducing the invigorating drum beats and gritty guitar riffs that flow across all of Polish Club’s songs. The ‘yeahs’ and ‘huhs’ before the drums kick in seem outdated and odd, but overall, it’s a promising opening track. The light-hearted rock vibes are carried over into the second song ‘Come Party’, which seems to embody the spirit and mentality of Polish Club’s music. Their songs aim to make you feel good, and if there’s one thing that Alright Already is, it’s a feelgood album.
By taking vintage surf rock vibes, then doubling the tempo and adding grit in the form of Novak’s rugged riffs and soul vocals in the songs ‘Watchuknow’ and ‘How to Be Alone’, Polish Club manage to give the comforting familiarity of old school rock’n’roll an exciting new twist. The carefree surf-vibes they channel sound like a grungier version of Sunset Sons, another band whose success has been rising since supporting a chart-topping artist on tour.
“the lyrics that are discernible lack depth”
Whilst it’s obvious that Polish Club have the carefree summer vibes perfected, the same can’t be said for the lyrics of many of the songs. Not only are Novak’s vocals obscured by the prioritisation of the guitar in the levelling of the tracks, the lyrics that are discernible lack depth. In some cases, the obscuring of vocals may be considered a blessing, with the lyrics of ‘Shark Attack!’ sacrificing depth of meaning for a repetitive, gimmicky vibe in the hopes of adding humour.
“The band prove that they are capable of writing infectiously catchy choruses”
When they can be made out over the powerful noise of their instruments, the full-bodied tone of Novak’s vocals is excellently showcased. This is especially true on ‘Able’ and ‘Divided’, two of the calmer songs on the album. The band prove that they are capable of writing infectiously catchy choruses in ‘Broke’, but their inconsistency in the quality of lyrics across the album leaves the slow burning build on the track ‘My Delight’ feeling dull in comparison.
One virtue of Polish Club’s debut is the light-heartedness carried across all fourteen tracks. Even songs whose lyrics hint at negative subjects, such as being lost and having no patience in ‘Beat Up’, wouldn’t feel out of place as the soundtrack for a summer barbeque. This can make a refreshing change from the doom and gloom approach many artists take when broaching serious topics.
One of the ways in which the band maintains this light-hearted, carefree vibe is to break the ‘fourth wall’ during and in between some tracks. By incorporating snippets of sounds and discussions from the recording studio after playing, a sense of familiarity and rapport is created with the listener. Not only is this entertaining, it really does make it feel as though you’ve been invited to ‘Come Party’ with the band.
By far, the strangest track of the album is ‘Red River Rock’. From the tune that wouldn’t seem out of place in a nursery or a football match, to the coughing fit at the end, it is certainly a memorable way to finish an album. The placement of this instrumental track at the end of the album makes it feel like a drunken sing along at the end of a night out. Although this is an unconventional way to finish an album, it does maintain the theme of a party. The fact that it ends in a coughing fit might be a step too far towards unprofessionalism, but it does ensure that you won’t forget about Polish Club in a hurry.
“they’re one to watch by delivering electrifying soul punk vibes”
As with any debut, there is room for improvement. Whilst Alright Already may not win any prizes for lyrical depth, the album still retains a polished feel through the continuation of the band’s unique sound. Polish Club have proved that they’re one to watch by delivering electrifying soul punk vibes across all fourteen tracks. Polish Club have real potential to deliver sounds that are guaranteed to make you move, making this a rock’n’roll debut that you won’t want to miss this summer.
Alright Already is out on the 10th of August 2018.
If you’re in London on the 2nd, 4th or 5th of August, you can come party with Polish Club on their first tour dates in the UK.
Featured Image courtesy of Polish Club Official Facebook page.