Polvo is an American indie noise rock band from Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The band, formed in 1990, is fronted by guitarists/vocalists Ash Bowie and Dave Brylawski. Brian Quast plays drums, and Steve Popson plays bass guitar. Eddie Watkins was the band's original drummer, but did not rejoin the band upon its reunion in 2008.
Polvo is widely considered to be standard bearer of a genre which came to be known as math rock, although in interviews the band disavowed that categorization. Their sound was defined by complex and dissonant guitar harmonies and driving rhythm, complementing cryptic, often surrealist lyrics. Their sound was so unpredictable and angular that the band's guitarists were often accused of failing to play with correctly tuned guitars. Polvo's songs and artwork frequently featured Asian/"exotic" themes and references. The band's name means "octopus" in Portuguese and "powder" or "dust" in Spanish; in Spain it also is a slang word for sex.
The band was critically acclaimed from the outset, at least among those critics who were into nontraditional/ underground rock. Additionally, their music had a pronounced Eastern feel that came not only from the Indian and Middle Eastern-style drones in their compositions, but actual Eastern instruments like the sitar as well.