An album built on resilience
Since their energetic and crowd-pleasing debut in 2012 with Give You the Ghost, Poliça has continued to give their fans exactly what they want. The American synthpop band from Minneapolis has continued to grow musically even through the hardest of set-backs like the near-death experience lead singer Channy Leaneagh went through after falling off of a roof. The band’s fifth studio album When We Stay Alive, however, is a testament to the long years of music-making that have happened and will continue to through the resilient members.
The 10-track album leads with “Driving,” a track written by Leaneagh in bed while recovering. Filled with hypnotic bass throbs and glitchier drums, the album’s opener is a fantasy world waiting to be explored. “TATA,” though not as musically complex as past Poliça music, takes the listener down a notch and allows the idea of pain and yearning for something to bust through. With lyrics like, “don’t you hold on to that hurt so long,” the listener can infer that the track might not only be about emotional pain but physical too. Leaneagh’s vocals shine on “Feel Life” and “Steady.” Both tracks carry a bit of power that can be heard from start to finish.
When We Stay Alive finds its stand out moment with “Forget Me Now.” The listener can find a real tenderness not only through the emotionally moving vocal range of Leaneagh but also through the tender openness. The track plays deep into the idea of, “recognizing a pattern of choosing people who can’t love you how you wish to be loved” according to the band from their official Twitter. The album ends with “Sea Without Blue.” A tender ballad of loss in its most emotional form. The track gently whisks the listener away into a state of gratitude and understanding.
Poliça find themselves in a state of pure resilience with When We Stay Alive. The album, like all other Poliça albums, is a standout from start to finish. No matter the time in between, the band always seems to find their way right back into the center of every listener’s hearts.