For a decade or so Polyphonic Spree has performed a production of holiday music annually in Dallas, Texas, their hometown. This carefully orchestrated event includes the group’s traditional robe costume in a holiday reprise, the entire Polyphonic group orchestra, kids, the famous Polyphonic Song Book, and even Santa! With the release of a new holiday album, Holidaydream: Sound of the Holidays Vol. One, they’re taking this show on the road. San Francisco is the third stop on the tour. While every Polyphonic Spree show is a bit of an extravaganza, this one is sure to delight. It’s more than appropriate for all ages; in fact children are invited on stage to frolic with Santa and the robed 24-piece Polyphonic Spree choir. If you think you might only be able to take so much of a talent show style holiday concert, have no fear this evening is a two-parter.

According to the venue’s website we can expect an “all-ages show, featuring an early set dedicated to the ‘Holidaydream’ material and a second, non-holiday, rock set. The all-ages, child-friendly shows will include the screening of traditional holiday films, an opening set by Gustafer Yellowgold, and a set of local performers unique to each city.” In San Francisco those local performers are: DJ Kenneth L. Kemp, Mad Science Fire & Ice Show, and Duckmandu.


Since it’s been awhile, how about a refresher? The Polyphonic Spree is the brain child of front man Tim DeLaughter, the band started as a twelve piece and quickly grew to include a choir, what could be argued as a small orchestra, and a rock band in an attempt to capture the sound and experience DeLaughter has been after all these years. He has said he’s not quite there yet, but hopes to be soon (hard to believe after twelve years).

Holidaydream: Sound of the Holidays Vol. One is the ensemble’s first record since The Fragile Army in 2007. Holidaydream has all the makings of a Polyphonic Spree album, which is to say we enter into the world of the Spree with a large psychedelic sound, walls of voices from the choir, and dream-like crescendos cascading like heavy snowfall in the winter. Ten songs are from previous Polyphonic Spree Holiday Extravaganzas, while two are new to the record.

The band is in the studio recording a new album, which is not holiday themed.

Polyphonic Spree’s Holiday Extravaganza is taking over Slim’s in San Francisco, December 8, 2012. For tickets and information, visit slimspresents.com.

The Polyphonic Spree 2012 Tour:
12/6 – Los Angeles, CA, Fonda Theater
12/8 – San Francisco, CA, Slims
12/11 – Chicago, IL, Logan Square Auditorium
12/14 – Philadelphia, PA, The Trocadero
12/15 – New York, NY, Webster Hall
12/22 – Dallas, TX, Lakewood Theater

Author

Amanda Roscoe Mayo

Amanda Roscoe Mayo is an independent curator and arts and music journalist based in Chicago, exhibiting nationally and published internationally. She received her master's degree in curatorial practice from California College of the Arts in San Francisco. The exhibitions she produces are critically curated to engage a multi-generational dialogue with a focus on emerging artists. In addition to her numerous curatorial projects, she is a regular contributing music, arts, and film writer for Mosshouse and San Francisco Arts Quarterly (SFAQ). While in San Francisco she wrote for KQED Arts as a music and film journalist.

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