Polemics – The Sesh (2021)

Going for a night out can be relaxing and exhilarating, but what happens when it goes on for too long? This is what Polemics explore in their EP The Sesh which delves into the moment when a good time turns into a creeping sense of unease. Matching up pop sensibilities with hardcore and alternative rock tones, they bring their wonderfully heavy tales to our ears.

The turn of light to dark in the EP comes from school friends Nathan Smith and Jeff Ingle. United by their passion for heavy music, they formed this musical project in 2019, and established themselves as an exciting emerging act through a series of live shows. They have now enlisted Rafael Martins (bass) to complete their sound and unleash their new attitude-driven sound into the world.

The title track ‘The Sesh’ uses an impromptu feeling to draw you into the single. The name is aptly chosen for the opening as it feels like a bunch of people starting a jam session and getting into the vibe with each other. Each instrument has its moment, while the melodic flow starts to build. When this happens, a rather ominous feeling starts to settle on your chest, but it is shifted for the energy of the guitars and deep bass. You can feel the good times woven into the melody, but there is a dark feeling creeping in from the edges. A rather frantic pace builds and gets your heart racing as you are pulled into the energy of a night out. When the vocals finally hit, they bring the darkness to the track, but do so in a really engaging and fun way. There is a post-punk feeling to the vocals as they call out and warble against the guitars.

‘Prangerang’ vibrates with a feeling of darkness through the opening. There is an uneasy feeling resting in this track from the first moment that taints the almost upbeat guitars. Everything drops for an almost nightmarish feeling. The vocals bring the unease to a new level as they send ghostly sensations running down your spine. There is a frantic feeling of fear woven into the vocal performance that gets your heart racing in fear and panic. This turns into a sense of acceptance of the darkness and understanding that everything is being wrecked. It is an intense song that hits in the best possible way.

The darkness of the last track is dropped for the opening of ‘Arm out of Mouth’ that has a really late-night feeling to it. The music shines with the feeling of early mornings when the world is asleep and only a few night owls are still awake. This weaves into the almost reflective tone of the vocals, as they lay out a detailed story. Through all of this, you are filled with a tired sense, like the long trek home after a night out. The lyrics are tinged with some of the darkness from the last track, but it is more sombre and lacks the frantic energy, yet settles heavier on your chest.

The EP closes with ‘Datais’ and its rolling stop-start opening. There is a rather funky feel to the undertone of the opening that brings back the uneasy feeling of the ‘Prangerang’. The vocals enter with a vintage horror movie feeling as they speak against the melodic movement. This turns into a panicked call that sends shivers racing down your arms. As the chorus hits, the vocals punch out with a post-punk flair that turns back to the spoken word tones of the opening. It is an interesting layered vocal performance that brings the creeping emotions of the track to life. Beneath the increasingly frantic vocals is a melody that rises with tense energy and coils in your chest, waiting to burst into a fight or flight response.

Polemics bring creeping unease to frantic energy as a night out turns dark in the tracks of The Sesh. Each single has its own energy, but the uniting threads weave them together in a powerful story of a night out gone wrong. As you listen, the energy of the music shakes you up and has shivers racing down your spine.

Find out more about Polemics on their Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Spotify.

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