My main question going into this show was if rising stars Dr. Dog could possibly follow up on the subtle brilliance of its last full length album, 2005's classic "Easy Beat". In the time since then the band’s earned glowing reviews, toured with several high profile bands (Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, the Black Keys, the Raconteurs.) and released an EP (2006's hidden treasure "Takers & Leavers"), so the guys have set the bar pretty high for themselves.
Once the band hit the stage in the backroom of Philly saloon Johnny Brenda’s they wasted no time diving right into their newest material, treating the packed crowd to a generous selection of short blasts from their newest release "We All Belong" before moving into highlights from its older releases. Backed at times by live horns & a string section songs such as "the Pretender", "California", "Goner" seemed made for the intimate room as vocalists Toby Leaman & Scott McMicken voices sailed to the roof. As Dr. Dog moved into its more familiar material the crowd began singing along eventually rushing the stage to join in the sing along climax of the campfire epic "Wake Up".
So, based on this set the answer is a resounding yes - at least live, Dr. Dog continue to impress with their hypnotic blend of psych-rock, melodic soul, & harmonious indie-pop all while avoiding any jam bandish bloat and self indulgence. If "We All Belong" captures the live energy of the tunes it should be another knockout.
about the pix: Just to switch things up a bit I shot these at 16:9 from the second floor balcony of Johnny Brenda’s. So the enlarged versions might look a little better than the ones above. So check out the enlarged versions in the flickr set if you're interested.
Watch & Listen:
Dr. Dog - video: "My Old Ways"
Fiddle While You Burn's 2006 Albums of the Year
11-01-06 CMJ Day 3, Dr Dog @ Bowery Ballroom
08-27-06 Dr. Dog @ McCarren Pool
Labels: Dr. Dog