Music: The Polyphonic Spree

Deeply depressed after the 1999 overdose death of good friend/Tripping Daisy bandmate Wes Berggren, Tim DeLaughter emerged from his soul’s dark teatime to create The Polyphonic Spree.

click to enlarge The Polyphonic Spree
The Polyphonic Spree

Deeply depressed after the 1999 overdose death of good friend/Tripping Daisy bandmate Wes Berggren, Tim DeLaughter emerged from his soul’s dark teatime to create The Polyphonic Spree, a psychedelic, orchestral Pop band diametrically opposed to the more straight-ahead Rock of Tripping Daisy. 


In tribute to the sunshine-sparkled Pop of the ’60s and Rock of the ’70s (The Beatles, The Association, The 5th Dimension, The Beach Boys, ELO, Wings), DeLaughter assembled Tripping Daisy’s rhythm section (Mark Pirro and Bryan Wakefield) and vocalist Julie Doyle, along with a small army of choral and Chamber Pop accompaniment, to craft an astonishingly bright and uplifting sound. 

Dressed in white robes like a coterie of harmonically gifted Hare Krishnas, the Spree made a visual impression nearly as startling as their Pop presentation. The Spree reverted to a colorful version of its Gospel choir look and released a holiday album and an unofficial recording of its take on the Rocky Horror soundtrack in 2012, followed by last year’s Yes, It’s True, largely viewed as a return to form, albeit one with slightly more mainstream aspirations. 

8:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 21. $20-$25. Taft Theatre, 317 E. Fifth St., Downtown, tafttheatre.org.

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