Today’s chat with Montreal’s POLYCHUCK revealed many insights to his music and career thus far. It was a wide-ranging interview covering the following subjects and more:
His new single “Hero” and its personal meaning
The band on “Hero” and working with Derek Sherinian
Playing live and the complications of the pandemic
His next album that we can exclusively reveal is a concept record called She
Teaching (and a special question from Tee Bone)
Managing social media and how each platform has unique demands
Mixed martial arts
Cooking, yes, cooking!
And because we are Canadian…the weather
Support original talent like Polychuck! The new single “Hero” is out now on all the usual platforms. The next single drops in May, with the concept album in late 2022 or early 2023. Keep your eye on this exciting new artist at Polychuck.com – all the links to his socials are there.
Also a special thanks to Tee Bone who wanted to co-host this episode but could not due to a natural disaster! I used his questions and observations, which were excellent.
The LeBrain Train: 2000 Words or More with Mike Ladano and Tee Bone
Episode 106 – The Return of Polychuck
Polychuck has remained busy since Deke and I last spoke to him back in July of 2021. Since that time he’s released the EP Shadows Remain, and his current single “Hero” featuring Derek Sherinian of Dream Theater on keyboards. We can’t wait to talk to him about the song, its important meaning, and the band he has backing him on it. This talented multi-instrumentalist has been creating a catalogue of songs that defy categorisation. As if that wasn’t enough, he’s also a mixed martial artist! Polychuck literally and figuratively kicks ass!
We always like to support Canadian talent, and Polychuck hails from beautiful Montreal, where he also teaches music. Truly, the guy is inspiring and if you don’t know that already, you will this Saturday at noon on the LeBrain. Please join myself, Polychuck, and special co-host Tee Bone for this sure-to-be awesome episode.
If you’re a regular here, chances are that you are familiar with Polychuck! Check out the short clip below to see one of the cool new shirts he has for sale. Polychuck is currently supporting his new single “Hero” featuring Derek Sherinian. A modern progressive rock tune, “Hero” is an impressive showcase of songwriting and musicianship.
Polychuck will be on the LeBrain Train on Saturday April 23 at noon. Don’t miss it.
Montreal’s Polychuck is a heck of a prodigy. He’s a megatalented singer / songwriter / shredder / teacher / mixed martial artist (!!) who does it all, and now he’s expanding his palette and progressing. Far beyond his firsttwo EPs. When we spoke to Polychuck on the LeBrain Train last year, he expressed his desire to get more progressive on his upcoming recordings. By collaborating with former Dream Theater/Kiss/Alice Cooper keyboardist Derek Sherinian, he’s made a huge leap. Also playing on this track are drummer Philipe Landry and bassist Frédérick Filiatrault. With the added firepower, “Hero” has a fuller sound than previous Polychuck songs. It’s like the playing field just got a whole lot bigger.
So let’s get to it. Cut to the chase. Polychuck, who is of Ukrainian descent, says “Hero” is a cry for peace, directly about current events. In times of crisis, music helps sooth. In turn, crises often inspire great music.
“Hero” commences with steely rhythm guitar with a wicked tone. It bounces from heavy rocking to acoustic picking and an instrumental outro. When Sherinian comes in near the start, he’s instantly recognizable. His solo work here is lyrical, and the perfect compliment to the song. Not to mention Polychuck’s own lead work, which is both impressive and melodic. All the playing here is just awesome, period.
“Hero” is an impressive construction. It’s complex, with several different sections including one at the end that reminds me of the keyboard part in “No More Tears” by Ozzy. Importantly, all the sections work together like chapters in a story, and the flow is natural. Best of all, “Hero” never stops being great through its 3:26 length.
Support up and coming talent like Polychuck and buy “Hero”. If you love that Dream Theater vibe, you will absolutely dig it.
2021: the year of the hamster wheel. It sure felt like we were spinning our tires all year! Sometimes inching a little forward in the mud, only to slide right back. What a year. But we did get some great music out of it.
Here at LeBrain HQ, if you go strictly by the numbers, there were two bands that dominated the year, both oldies acts from the 1980s: Coney Hatch and Iron Maiden! They (or members thereof) appear numerous times in the lists you’re about to read. Not so “oldies” after all eh? Five appearances for Iron Maiden, and a whopping seven for Coney and its members!
Even I was surprised by the lists this year! All my favourite things, and the stats of 2021, are curated below.
Polychuck’s back. The diverse Montreal musician / singer / songwriter / shredder has returned to cap off 2021 with a followup EP to this year’s Shadows Exposed, and it’s a step into a larger world. Everything seems bigger and bolder. According to the man himself, these two new songs are a closing of the Shadows chapter, as he moves on to prepare his full length album debut — a concept album.
Of this new release, Polychuck explains: “Those were the two songs that originally didn’t make the cut because of their darker, more aggressive sound. These are the heavier tracks that were written and recorded at the same time as the other ones on the EP.”
The progressive “Scarred” has elements that harken back to classic Alice Cooper. Haunting keyboard touches, cinematic dialogue in the backdrop. The song soon evolves into a chugging metallic stomp, with double bass setting an aggressive tone. The icing on the cake is the second solo, a guest guitar spot by 17 year old Justus Hajas. Wait until you hear this one!
The second track, “Lay a Claim”, stirs more ingredients together, including 80s pop and record scratching. This classic-to-be brings us out of the Shadows with positive lyrics and outstanding melodies. “I’m here to fuckin’ stay,” sings Polychuck with intent.
With talent like this, he’s sticking around!
Indeed, Polychuck has a vision, and it’s going to be cool to watch him unfold it. As his sound grows we can assume his forthcoming album will be even bigger in scope.
From Montreal, with a do-it-yourself attitude and all the know-how, Polychuck is ready to be heard. His new EP Shadows Exposed has something for everyone, and that’s not just a cliche this time. Five deeply personal songs, from the wellspring of modern popular music, heavy metal, progressive rock, and all the classics. Polychuck is a musically intelligent individual who pulls no punches on guitar, lyrically, or in the ring. He’s also an MMA fighter!
Lead track “Beating Myself Down” has the vintage piano bop vibe, complete with scratchy vinyl playback. Before you mistake it for a Billy Joel record, Polychuck brings in the modern influences and blunt lyrics. Synth horns give you an idea of where Polychuck is coming from. Performed on keyboards this time, he wants to use a real horn section on his next album. Creative use of vocoder, and a smoking guitar solo with some insane sounds are the icing on a very sweet cake.
“Exposure” has a modern urban feel, before the heavy metal drum beats kick in. This is augmented by some pretty awesome record scratching. The Styx-like keyboard solo reveals Polychuck’s progressive side, which he also wishes to explore further next time out.
Another strong tune, “In the Dark”, binds the heavy beats, some creative keyboard construction, and a solid guitar riff. This riff transforms into a wailing solo. Fans of Linkin Park will find something to love here.
Light beach-ready guitar plucks away on “Driving Me Mad”, a song for the summer that sounds like a holdover hit from ages past. What sets it apart is, again, the guitar. At one point Polychuck hits upon a melody something like “Rough Boy” by ZZ Top, and it’s the perfect fixture for the song.
The last song “Lights Out” tackles a number of subjects: the inner critic, nostalgia, old friendships, and more. Light 80s keyboard is paired with heavy drums and guitar, ending the EP on a positive note.
When Deke and I talked to Polychuck, he told us he was very much looking forward to making everything bigger next time out, with more real instruments and much more prog. We look forward to what he has in store, but check out the EP for a taste. It’s available on iTunes and all the usual streaming platforms. Shadows Exposed makes a splash but it’s just the inception. More to come from this gifted artist.
2021’s musical selections are strong. Lee Aaron proved she has the album necessary for a good-time summer, and Polychuck played well in the car. ZZ Top was obviously spun in tribute to the late great Dusty Hill. When Afterburner concluded, we played “I Got the Six”, and “Sharp Dressed Man”.
On the Sunday drive home, Jen slept while I got nostalgic for the year 1989 with:
My feelings this time out were that Dr. Feelgood is tremendously overrated while Pump is not. Pump is solid and probably the last time Aerosmith nailed it front to back.
On the front deck this weekend, I spun a lot of music. Most notably Guns N’ Roses’ new song “Absurd” about six times in a row. I also listened to a new album by group out of Halifax called War & Sin that you will be hearing about. The album is called The War Within and it hits all the bases, like good heavy metal with diverse influences. The singer reminds me of Blaze Bayley, but in a good way. You can check out the album on iTunes.
I had a couple good fires this weekend, and the soundtrack of Kiss went well in that setting. A cottage weekend without Kiss just isn’t right for my soul. This weekend I chose Dressed to Kill and Destroyer. I brought the laptop over to the fireplace and let Kiss do the rest.
It was a solid three day weekend anchored by music, fire, food and swimming. On Saturday I believe I went for five swims total. The last was a sunset swim and we got some pretty cool video footage that you can now enjoy with me.
Lots of laughs and musical wisdom from the inspiring Polychuck on today’s episode of the LeBrain Train! Influenced by everybody from Yngwie J. Malmsteen to Post Malone, Polychuck strikes from Montreal with his new EP Shadows Exposed. Deke and I had a blast talking to the man about topics such as:
The LeBrain Train: 2000 Words or More with Mike and Deke
Episode 77 – Polychuck
We’ve been talking about Montreal’s multi-instrumentalist Polychuck for a few weeks; well now it’s time to talk to the man himself! His new EP Shadows Exposed features five new tracks, including “In the Dark” and “Beating Me Down”. Introspective songs with modern urban beats and shredding guitar solos. A unique combination to be sure. Polychuck has been shredding since age 13! We can’t wait to find out what makes him tick. His use of striking visuals and unique influences are sure to come up in our conversation.