Polly Panic – Losing Form

This was a bit of a strange listen. Dear readers – have you ever listened to anything and wanted to like it so much, yet found yourself unable? That’s how we felt with Losing Form, the new album from Polly Panic. She’s obviously very talented, yet we just couldn’t get into it.

By Jane Howkins

She’s had pretty good reviews across the board so perhaps it’s just us, and perhaps we just need to listen to this album more. We just found it really hard to get into as a whole. Her music is similar to that of Tori Amos at her most absurd and experimental, so if you like your music safe you won’t like this. Her vocals reminded us particularly of Mrs Amos, and we felt at times like she was almost attempting to copy her vocal style at times. However, whilst we are fans of Tori, Polly soundly quite out of tune at a lot of times.

Musically her music is a lot rockier, and we were reminded more of PJ Harvey in her early days, with harsh guitar riffs mixing with cello melodies, which is Polly’s main instument. There are loads of great ideas here, but the vocals didn’t always seem to go with the music, and the production was a little raw at times, and didn’t quite sound right. This was our main issue – it felt like if things were changed just a little, then this could have come out fantastically. However, it just didn’t quite fit right with us.

Perhaps it’s the sort of album we need to listen again until we get it. When this reviewer first heard Tori Amos’s Boys For Pele at the grand old age of 14 she hated it, and yet it’s now a firm favourite. A lot of people will like this, but it isn’t for those who like their music safe, and we recommend listening to it a fair few times until it finally clicks. We certainly will be.