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  1. Polarity were back at ‘Play’, this time bringing with them a new vocalist. Last time they played, their musical aptitude was unquestionable, but there was a spark missing from the onstage performance of the band. Not this time though, the singer adding a dramatic enthusiasm to the proceedings which was infectious and provided the visual focal point which had been missing. They charged through a set of rock covers, their sound blasting from the stage with drum rolls, guitar riffs and an air unbridled cheer which was the new, but vital addition to the mix. Having passed through AC/DC, Lenny Kravitz, Radiohead and Bon Jovi on the way, the set drew to a close with an ambitious, but successful ‘I Believe in a Thing Called Love’, the high notes resoundingly reached – no mean feat at the end of an hour set. And frankly, any band who invite you to buy your drinks during an overly long guitar solo get my vote every time.”
  2. Polarity are good, old fashioned fun. They’ve honed their rock covers to an impressively individual level and deliver them with unrelenting joy. Their set is packed with levels of enthusiasm which you would think would be hard to maintain, but they manage to do so throughout it. As a band, they work as a whole, with no element being more important than any other…”

Polarity at the Southsea Bandstand- 17th June 2012


  • R.E.M – “The One I Love”
  • Queen – “Crazy Little Thing Called Love”
  • Don Henley – “Boys Of Summer”
  • The Undertones – “Teenage Kicks”
  • ZZ Top – “Gimme All Your Lovin’”
  • Pearl Jam – “Alive”
  • Billy Idol – “White Wedding”
  • Europe – “Final Countdown”
  • Judas Priest – “Breaking The Law”
  • Metallica – “Nothing Else Matters”
  • Heart – “Alone”
  • Iron Maiden – “The Trooper”
  • Dio – “Holy Diver”
  • David Bowie – “Magic Dance”
  • AC/DC – “Highway To Hell”
  • Boston – “More Than A Feeling”


Right, those of you who know me will know there are two things which 90% of the time leave me bored and unsaturated in the Portsmouth music scene:

1. Pretentious singer song-writer types with acoustic guitars (Bar a distinct few)


2.  Covers bands….

This is due to the overabundance of these acts in the scene. I’m bored of hearing the same old covers over and over again by aging gentlemen who should have given up trying to be rock stars years ago when they realised they can’t really play their instruments.

However I will say this, I like Polarity seeing as they simply do not fit the above mould. Now in their 7th incarnation, drummer and band manager Dean Hall has built a formidable line-up of talented, like minded musicians who work magnificently together. I’ve watched the band develop through these line-up changes over the last three years and this by far is the strongest line-up I’ve seen.  I’ve been following them on Facebook and they appear to be constantly gigging all around the south.

The first few songs of the set really didn’t do the band justice, sounding very sloppy and unpolished. However, they are not entirely to blame as the mix of sound was too bass and drums heavy completely cancelling out any guitars and letting little vocals through. This obviously affected the band, periodically falling out of time and key.

However any issues were completely short lived as the band enter their element as they rip into Don Henley’s ‘Boys Of Summer’ somehow rejuvenating them filling them with a newfound confidence. They appear as a completely different band, each member embracing a personality, from the cool grooves of Pat (Bass) and Kev (Guitars), the sweet licks of Simon (Guitars), the eccentricity of Dean (Drums) and the nerdy charms of lead vocalist Martyn. The crowd also became more animated, kids are having fun and people actually started to pay attention to the band.

The band proceeded to tear through Pearl Jam’s “Alive”, Billy Idol’s “White Wedding”, Maiden’s “The Trooper” and ballsy rendition of Dio’s “Holy Diver” all of which note for note perfect. My personal highlight of the set was the inclusion of Europe’s “Final Countdown” which was nailed from top to tail, filled with a ball busting solo by guitarist Simon. Last song Boston’s “More Than A Feeling” left the band and crowd in high spirits with a heartfelt dedication from Martyn. Overall a fantastic day at Southsea Bandstand, much helped by the brief appearance of the sun!

8/10 – Robert Jolliffe