Los Angeles alt-rock duo Polaris Rose are set to drop sophomore full-length Ocean Blue, Velvet Skies on March 25th. It’s a nice, natural progression from 2014 debut Telescopes (which we reviewed) and continues an overall theme that’ll span a few more albums. You can grab “That Lonely Road” as a free download right now, and learn more about what to expect from the record overall with this lil’ chit-chat with Peter Anthony (vocals/guitar) and Maddie Elyse (vocals/bass).
I find Ocean Blue, Velvet Skies is a little bit more eclectic than Telescopes. Is that a fair assessment? What influences went into it?
Yeah, we agree with that. We wanted Telescopes to be one of those albums that – when a person hears it – they think ‘Oh ok, this is their sound’. Nothing too jarring. We wanted it to be a clear declaration of our sound/identity. For Ocean Blue, Velvet Skies we knew that we wanted the sound to take what we did on Telescopes and show growth. We allowed ourselves to showcase the dynamics in our songwriting more. Plus, the lyrics and overall themes of the record get more mature and just a little bit darker.
With your songs all connecting as part of a bigger concept, what part of the story are we in with this new album?
Ocean Blue, Velvet Skies is part 2 of a 6-part series. Compared to our last record, OBVS gets a lot more personal and – we think – has a more mature sound to it. It’s also just a smudge darker. Our forthcoming records are going to continue to grow down that road.
Not that the video for “TigerBait” isn’t good, but Madelynn told me on Twitter that she – like me – pictured a “Thinking Out Loud” vibe for it. Peeeettttteerrr why a no-go there???
Maddie: You hit on a sore subject ha ha.
Peter: Maddie is still mad at me.
Being a duo that shares vocal duties, how does the writing process go? Do you sing what you write or just collaborate on everything?
We collaborate. We recorded around 35 ideas for Ocean Blue, Velvet Skies before settling on the 9 that are on the record. That whole process of demoing and brainstorming goes through a lot of stages and reworks. It’s a lot of bouncing ideas back and forth.
As you get ready to release the sophomore album, what’s been the coolest thing that’s happened to the band since releasing the debut?
Actually, getting Ocean Blue, Velvet Skies mixed by John Spiker and mastered by Eric Boulanger. It brought the record to life and it was one of the most thrilling musical experiences of our whole lives.
Besides putting out Ocean Blue, Velvet Skies what does 2016 have in store for Polaris Rose?
Lots of shows. And who knows. We may release another record.
Polaris Rose online: