Polar Maps – Q+A

We recently spoke to Isle of Wight band, Polar Maps, about their first single release, influences and the local music scene. Check out what they have to say!

Polar Maps - 'Stay Here With Me'

Firstly, I’ve seen some of you guys in other bands before – so how many bands have you guys been in collectively before ending up together? And how did you all come together in the end? Who was the driving force behind Polar Maps?

Countless, sometimes I (Guy; Guitar & vocals) find CDs of bands I forgot I was in! Daryl played drums on an EP I produced for an artist called Cherishport and I really liked his vibe. We loosely knew each other before that but after working on that project we both said how great it would be to start a band together (as you do!), and incredibly we actually followed through with it. We spent a few months after that jamming, working on songs etc. whilst trying to find a bass player and eventually Joe came to mind, who, again, is someone I’d worked with in the studio before, but neither of us knew him particularly well beyond that. Thankfully Joe agreed to join, and I think it’s due to the fact that we’d not been in any bands together before (that I can remember…) that it’s got off to a good, productive start. It’s very easy on this island to start ‘new’ bands with the same people, but this feels very new and exciting.

So who are the musical influences for each of you?

We all love The Beatles (of course), could list a thousand bands but it always comes back to The Beatles! In a nut shell, Daryl likes reggae, Joe likes spaghetti western and Guy likes 60’s stuff.

You’ve recently released your first single, ‘Stay Here With Me’, and a lot of fans have praised the single, and Musically Fresh is definitely a fan. What was it like for Polar Maps to record and release their first single and video?

We were thrilled with the response to that single. We decided it was best for us to produce the recording ourselves (with massive credit to our mate Claydon who’s been helping along the way with extra engineering / production) as we were still really getting to know each other and we just wanted to see what we were capable of. Choosing the single was a pretty straight forward affair, and going the extra mile to get a video together for the release definitely helped the relative success of the track. It felt great to get the song out there and we’re really looking forward to getting more stuff out very soon.

(Read out review of ‘Stay Here With Me’ and watch the music video right HERE!)

And how did it feel not only hearing the single on radio, but getting ‘Record of the Week’ on IOW radio?

That was a very welcome surprise, we didn’t even realise it was ROTW until the Wednesday!

And how long do the fans have to wait for the full EP?

We’ve made some good progress recently with the record, we’re hoping to get it out in June/July. It’ll be a 6 track EP and we’ve picked the next single which we are hoping to get out by way of a video shortly before the EP release.

You are a stand-out talent on the Isle of Wight, how important has the local community been for the band? And how do you believe the IOW music scene continues to rally around local talent?

There are so many great talents here. There’s been a definite lull in the music scene for a few years until quite recently – suddenly there’s lots of bands, lots of gigs, festivals, studios, and a few guys that are doing REALLY well and spearheading the campaign. The local scene and community is so important and great fun to be a part of.

Are there any plans for an upcoming tour or gig dates? And what steps are you taking to break away from the Island roots, and reach fans across the country and even internationally?

We’re not planning any tours any time soon, although we’re making sure we have fairly regular gigs while we continue to work on new material and develop our sound as a band. Keep checking our Facebook for gig listings; we’ve got stuff coming up at Avondales in Southampton, some local dates, festivals etc. Our priority after getting the EP out is to write, but if anyone out there particularly wants us to play in their town or city just give us a shout and we’ll do it!

As a relatively new band, you’re utilising social media to connect with the fans and promote any band activities. How important do you think social media is for bands today?

It’s pretty much a must, we’ve found twitter in particular to be a great place to find new fans etc. Most of the blogs/radio stations that have picked up on our music so far have been through Twitter. It’s a good tool.

And finally, do you have a message for your fans?

Yes, hi mum!


You can follow the guys on the following platforms:

–          Twitter @PolarMaps

–          Facebook PolarMaps

–          Soundcloud.com/PolarMaps

–          Polarmaps.bandcamp.com

Stefan Armitage

Stefan is an editor, writer, radio presenter, MA student and adored barman. A lover of good music, he might just be the most entertaining entity to come from the Isle of Wight.

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