The Dallas “choral rock” troupe Polyphonic Spree are no longer the “dudes in robes.”
For its third album, “The Fragile Army,” the 24-member group — which to be accurate, also includes women and not just dudes — had traded in its choir robes for a new look, dark, military-style jumpsuits bearing peace symbols such as hearts and the Red Cross.
“The main idea behind the uniforms is just unifying the group,” explains Julie Doyle, who produced “The Fragile Army” along with her partner and group founder Tim DeLaughter, formerly of the hard rock band Tripping Daisy. “It’s never going to be specific to just robes or just military wear. It’ll just be whatever is appropriate at the time.
“Our wish is to present it as sort of unorthodox, musically. That’s why people scratch their heads a lot along the way. They go, ‘What is this?’ It’s evolving. It’s not finished yet.”
If Doyle and DeLaughter have their way, that end point will be along way off. The Spree’s popularity as a live act, Doyle notes, means “we get offers to play and play and play regardless of an album,” although she says the group had to call a moratorium on live shows in order to make “The Fragile Army.”
“It’s easy to lose perspective when you’re on the road,” she notes. “We all had to get away and start absorbing everyday life again, and then we decided to make an album when it made sense and there was a strong point of view rather than just doing it because we make music.
“When that feeling happens — ‘We’re ready. Let’s write a record and get in there!’ — it’s really exciting.”
The Polyphonic Spree and Jesca Hoop performs tonight at the Majestic Theater, 4140 Woodward Ave., Detroit. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call (313) 833-9700 or visit www.majesticdetroit.com.
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