We’re stoked to share our Q&A interview with Jimmy Stadt of POLAR BEAR CLUB currently on their fall headlining 2013 tour–Along with Citizen, Diamond Youth & The Sainthood Reps.

This exceptionally popular & hard working band just released their fourth album Death Chorus (Rise Records). In which, they’re playing in Oakland, CA on Tuesday Nov 26 at the Oakland Metro Operahouse. Get tickets here.

“Death Chorus” showcases a brighter guitar tone and is more of a “pop” record (their words) compared to their previous body of work. It’s an album of tight hooks and should be a great milestone for this band. So, make sure you can check them out with Citizen, Diamond Youth & Sainthood Reps in tour support. This show also marked as one of our live concert picks for the week. #Go2ShowSF


T-LIVE: Congratulations on the new release! Can you talk about your new album, Death Chorus, on Rise Records. Where’d you record it? Who produced?

 Jimmy Stadt: We recorded it at Studio 4 outside of Philadelphia. Will Yip produced it. We had a lot of fun with this one. We set out to make a noisy pop record and Will was on board with that 100 percent. He killed it.

How was this album different that your previous efforts? Was there a specific goal on this record?

We really just wanted it to be a loud and hard pop record. That was the only conscious goal really. It was a lot different this time around merely because we had three new players on this one and that will always bring about some differences.

Also, with any lineup changes, how did it specifically affect this latest recording? Or did it?

It really just added a new energy. Everyone was incredibly excited to be working on the record. I think that’s why this one is a little more upbeat than our previous records.

This album is a little cleaner tone guitar wise, less dark than your previous record, Clash Battle Guilt Pride. Was that just how the songs wrote themselves? Or was this a conscious effort?

It just came out that way. I think we wanted to keep the darkness in the lyrics and see how far we could push the pop in the music. The contrast between the two was interesting to us.

“I think we wanted to keep the darkness in the lyrics and see how far we could push the pop in the music.” –Jimmy Stadt.

Off this new album, Death Chorus, are their any new songs playing live that’s becoming a favorite? A must for your set list?

Right now we’re playing Blood Balloon and WLWYCD live and people are liking them. The record just came out so people are still kind of “learning” the new stuff.” It feels great to have new material in the set though.

Polar Bear Club – WLWYCD (Official Music Video)

Going back about your history, how did Polar Bear Club begin?

We started in 2005 just as a part time band. We had all done bands prior to PBC and we’re just sort of playing as a side project to those bands. PBC just took off though so we stuck with it.

What did you consider was the kickstart of your band?

I don’t know, it’s hard to pin point. We just started getting attention from all over. Different magazine were interested in us, people from across the world were messaging us about touring. Finally we just took the plunge and started touring full-time.

Talk to the music scene coming up back home.

Our scene growing up was fantastic. Is was really diverse and positive. Bane and Strike Anywhere were big as were a slew of incredible local bands. We just had a lot of  opportunities to play shows and see shows. That time in punk and hardcore from like 1999 to 2005 completely informed our style.

Looking back, how have you evolved as a band?

I think we’re chasing a good song as opposed to a good “riff” or “part” now. Basically we’re still doing the same thing we’ve always done, making music that we want to hear.

How’s the tour coming along?
Is there a tour date where you haven’t been before?

Tour is great! There isn’t a city on this tour that I haven’t been to multiple times before. That being said, it’s nice to be familiar with a lot of different cities.

Are you going anywhere new this tour? Somewhere never been before or looking forward too?

No new cities but a lot of cities that we love to play. Chicago, Portland, NYC and many others.

Do you get time off to do touristy stuff while on the road?

Not really, kind of the downside to touring. 

What are your tips to stay sane on the road?

Take your alone time, unapologetically. You gotta get away from the group every now and then and conversely you gotta let your guys branch off as well.

What could people expect from your live show that might be different from listening to your records?

People are always telling me that they don’t really “get” our band until they see us live. I’m not sure what that means but maybe that answers your question.

What are the plans for the remainder of 2013 and for 2014?

Touring off of Death Chorus. We’re trying to hit some places we’ve never been this year so that’s exciting.

I like to ask all bands, what were the albums you bought as a kid, or concerts you saw, that made you want to be a musician? And why?

I’ve talked about Pennywise’s “Unknown Road” a lot in interviews. That record blew my mind as a kid. It was the first record I hear that made me feel like I had a place on earth. The best concert I saw was probably The Weakerthans and Elliot in a VFW hall back in 2000 maybe? Left and Leaving had just come out. It was the most amazing show.


All images courtesy of Polar Bear Club, Rise Records & Earshot Media

So, make sure you catch POLAR BEAR CLUB with Citizen, Diamond Youth & Sainthood Reps in tour support. This show also marked as one of our live concert picks for the week. #Go2ShowSF

Nov 20            Kilby Court Gallery  Salt Lake City, UT
Nov 21            Shredder      Boise, ID
Nov 22            The Vera Project       Seattle, WA
Nov 23            Biltmore Cabaret     Vancouver, Canada
Nov 24            Branx  Portland, OR
Nov 26            Oakland Metro Operahouse          Oakland, CA
Nov 27            Chain Reaction        Anaheim, CA
Nov 29            The Irenic     San Diego, CA
Nov 30            Eagle Aerie Hall Henderson, NV
Dec 01            Pub Rock Live         Scottsdale, AZ
Dec 02            Gasworks Albuquerque, NM
Dec 03            Sons of Hermann Hall        Dallas, TX
Dec 04            The Abbey Memphis, TN
Dec 05            Drunken Unicorn     Atlanta, GA
Dec 06            Strange Matter Richmond, VA
Dec 07            First Unitarian Church       Philadelphia, PA