“It’s confusing man, no one from Belgium should sound like this, but I blame the international school for making me sound like a stupid American.” I was very curious about Novak’s background. POLISH CLUB have strong soul influences in their sound, he sounds American and has dark skin. “My mum is Filipino and my dad is Polish. The accent comes from growing up in Belgium. I was born here in Sydney and came back when I was 14.” Taking my call as he negotiated the end of a taxi ride, the singer-guitarist continued to indulge my curiosities about this fab two-piece as they embark on the long overdue release of their debut album.
“We’re just stoked to finally have an album done. It’s been a long time coming.” Alright Already was released on March 31st. For fans it’s been a wait, as we have had a trickle of awesome singles and EPs since the group formed in 2014. When I identify myself as an eager fan who has been teased by this trickle, Novak responds with, “It’s appalling.” He spurs on my anticipation by adding, “We’ve ended up with an album that we couldn’t be happier with. We’re hoping that everyone agrees that the wait was worth it.”
The duo has already garnered a strong reputation with their previous singles, solid airplay and outstanding live shows, yet they are still a relatively new band. “We’ve known each other for over a decade. John had been in a bunch of bands for a while. He knew I could sing so we just locked ourselves in a room one day and all of a sudden, we had a band. It was very organic, but it took a while.”
As a two-piece, they join the ranks of other great Australian two-pieces (Mess Hall, The Grates, Hockey Dad, DZ Deathrays). “It wasn’t really a conscious thing for John and I to keep it as a two-piece, but we wrote a bunch of songs together and it’s seemed to work and we seemed to pull it off.” Their live show packs the punch of an eight-piece, so I was keen to know how they do that.
“The challenge in making that engaging and exciting is something that we like playing around with, so we just go as hard as we possibly can and fortunately we haven’t had too many complaints yet.”
I first caught the band at Transit Bar supporting Gang of Youths, so I was curious if they had slipped through here any other time. “We did once do Groovin The Moo but since that was like 11am, I don’t count that as an actual Canberra show.” They are sure to own the tiny Transit stage on their upcoming headline tour now that they have a bunch more songs for us. “It’s very much our comfort zone being a little pub vibe atmosphere.”
Novak shares our joy for bringing the show to Canberra. “Having people show up to your show to see your band, it’s kind of a surreal thing. It’s what you aim for when you start writing music – to have people give a shit about it and its starting to happen. It’s pretty weird and I love it.”
Don’t miss Polish Club at Transit Bar on Thursday June 1 at 8pm. Tickets are $22.90 through Moshtix.