Friday 18 May 2012

Polinski // Live Review, St. Philip's Church, Manchester

We were lucky enough to be invited to attend a very special event organised by Future Everything in association with Hairbrain. Paul Wolinski aka “Polinski” is returning to his home town for his debut audio visual show. We were expecting futuristic rhythms, euphoric tones and soaring instrumentals as Polinski takes electronica to the next level in the glorious surroundings of St Philip’s Church. And we weren’t disappointed…

The event was in support of legendary Komische musician Dieter Moebius’ live, improvised score for Fritz Langs silent sci-fi masterpiece “Metropolis”. Polinski was the sole support for Dieter and brought something truly unique to the beautiful church, tucked away on the outskirts of Manchester city centre.  

We caught up with Polinski ahead of the event to find out what we could expect [CLICK HERE TO READ]

Polinski in St. Philip's Church
After taking to our seats, or rather pews, surrounded by the grandeur of the building we saw Polinski modestly stroll to stage to begin his set. A few rumblings began amongst the ‘congregation’ enquiring about who was up on stage, but within moments of the set commencing the entire room was silent and entirely engaged in the performance. A huge screen projected with Polinksi’s logo introducing the performance filled the stage whilst the man himself was unassumingly placed at one side, his equipment and laptop in front of him. From beginning to end Polinski’s set, combined with the exquisite audio visual show, has an epic sound quality. The blending of tracks from his album “Labyrinths” is mirrored in the audio visuals crafted by New York based visual artist Caspar, who has previously worked with the likes of Daft Punk. Stand out track and single, “Stitches” blends cartoon computer game visuals with fantasy and sci-fi sounding notes. "When the pixels form through the copper wire it’s time to remember what you said. When the message comes I'll be far from here, some truths are just better left unread" resounds “Stitches”, while the words appear on screen, perfectly in sync. Polinski effortlessly captures the rise and fall of beats, the clashing of sounds, then pulls it back at the perfect time. The electronic voice echoes the words which further resonate in the church surroundings as two female figures appear on screen. As the beginning of the set comes to a climax the audience is unsure whether to clap, but do, signalling for Polinski to begin once again. 

Polinski’s music has an electronic hardness to it that is in keeping with the evening and is the perfect prelude to the expressionist science fiction film “Metropolis”. The melodic fantasy style on tracks such as “Awaltzoflight” bring together the distortion of sounds and big harmonies, whilst “Kressyda” experiments with change in tempo, occasionally speeding up. 

Polinksi’s set comes into fruition, gathering pace towards the end, and his music combined with the visuals is enthralling and enchanting. It could've been one of those sets that is tiresome and disengaging, but instead was constantly changing pace whilst embracing the science fiction sounds of the 80s and contrasting with modern visuals. The gradual layering of sounds on tracks such as “1985-Quest” is hypnotic and the entire set has a flow to it, piece by piece everything comes together.  

Polinski on stage
Dieter Moebius sits down and is very composed as he performs the score to “Metropolis”. In contrast Polinski is lurched over his decks, totally engrossed and really feels each rhythm. Both styles are in keeping with the evening; both men move with precision and make the event dynamic and captivating. The only criticism was that the show would have been even better had it been conducted in darkness. However, the twilight setting in the confines of the church was something quite special Polinski’s debut audio visual show was undoubtedly a success. 

Polinski's album "Labyrinths" is out now on Monotreme Records.