by CESAR SALAZAR
Minneapolis-based synth-pop band Poliça are set to perform on Levee Park’s Main Stage at 10:15 p.m. on April 30 as part of the 2022 Mid West Music Fest (MWMF). Poliça are scheduled to perform alongside more than 70 bands during the two-day MWMF to be held at multiple venues in Winona.
The performance will mark Poliça’s first participation in the MWMF and has generated enthusiasm among the organizers and the group.
“If I could see everything [the bands] I would, but I think [one of] the ones to check for sure are Poliça Saturday night,” MWMF executive director Dylan Hilliker said in an interview. “…They’re one of the biggest bands in Minneapolis and one of the most influential bands, I would say, on this scene.”
Formed in 2011, Poliça is led by singer/songwriter duo Channy Leaneagh and producer Ryan Olson with bassist Chris Bierden and drummers Drew Christopherson and Ben Ivascu. The band’s biography on Spotify describes their music as “blending elements of dream pop, R&B and electronic music into their own expressive style”.
“We can’t wait to get back to playing shows and MWMF will be our first since the fall,” Leaneagh said in an interview. “It will be really nice to have a stage here.” She continued, “We have held many festivals around the world. This is our first at the MWMF.
Poliça will play a mix of new, unreleased live songs and older hits, according to Leaneagh. “We’re going to be playing some new songs that we just released,” Leaneagh said. “We’ve released two singles: we’ve released a single called ‘Rotting’ and we just released another song called ‘Alive’. So we’re going to play those. We also have a lot of new songs that we haven’t played yet. in the United States because our tour was canceled after the release of our album “When We Stay Alive” in 2020. We will be playing a lot of songs that people might not hear live. We are always adding some of our old favorites as well.
Leaneagh loves the euphoric feeling of making and listening to music. “Time passes and you don’t even notice it, and you feel your heart beating faster,” Leanneagh said. “You feel more awake, more alive and invigorated. You can get lost, and that’s what I feel when I make music. I love making music with other people. She continued, “I love the visceral feeling I get from listening to music. I also like to listen to live music; I love watching a good performer.
According to Leaneagh, Poliça makes music collaboratively. “We really inspire each other and by that I mean a lot of the stuff I write is sort of based on the vibe of Olson’s music,” Leaneagh said. “Starting from, [Bierden, Christopher, Ivascu] are kind of inspired by the melodies that I sing and the lyrics of Olson’s production. We’re kind of an assembly line band, and we all react to each other and vibe to each other.
Among the scores of other bands playing at the MWMF, various different genres and styles will be performed, such as HALEY’s slowcore, indie rock, and Abby Hamilton’s indie country, folk-rock.
The Mid West Music Fest serves as a way to celebrate and discover musicians from across the region. “A festival is a great time to discover a bunch of different bands that you might never have heard before,” Leaneagh said.
“We expose people to new music that they might not have seen before at Winona,” Hilliker said. “That’s what the festival is all about, but I think this year in particular we’re really focused on making it a festival of musical discovery.”
More information and tickets can be found at www.midwestmusicfest.org. Hilliker explained that festival-goers can download the “Mid West Music Fest” app to their phones to help plan the various events and shows they would like to attend. “You have to get the most out of your ticket,” Hilliker said. He continued, “Make your schedule in advance and just try to make the most of it.”