Dr. Dog has been creating music in various incarnations in their hometown of Philadelphia for nearly six years now. From the humble beginnings of THE PSYCHEDELIC SWAMP, a concept album realized in the damp ruin of a flooded basement, through the critically acclaimed EASY BEAT (2005) the band has cultivated a strong national following through their energetic live shows. They spent the better part of 2006 in the studio cooking up two new releases: a six song EP called TAKERS AND LEAVERS, which will be released worldwide on Sept 12, 2006, and WE ALL BELONG, a long player that will see the light of day February 27, 2007.
The early years of Dr. Dog were spent largely in and around Philadelphia until the spring of 2004, when the band was invited to tour with My Morning Jacket after MMJ front man Jim James heard Dr. Dog’s first non-concept album TOOTHBRUSH. Using the money they raised on the MMJ tour, the band added a microphone to their home studio and recorded their second album EASY BEAT.
The band first released EASY BEAT on their own, selling it at shows and through the mail in cases where a generation of emailers were willing to put a check in an envelope and buy a stamp in return for a copy of the album. While not the most technologically savvy means of delivery the method worked to build a fan base outside of Philly for Dr. Dog and even caught the attention of a few journalists along the way.
Along with Rolling Stone, Spin, Alternative Press, Fader and many others, The Philadelphia Inquirer raved EASY BEAT is an“ infectious debut album ... Beach Boys-style three part harmonies layered over skewed bouncy rock songs." The New York Times went on to call EASY BEAT an “ extraordinary catalog of off kilter ballads and light-headed riff rock ... All nine songs, filled with breezy vocal harmonies and unexpected digressions ... epic."
The later half of 2005 and the beginning of 2006 saw the band on tour in the United States and throughout Europe before entering the studio in the Spring to work on their next two releases. Both works will be released in North America on Park The Van records, a Philly-centric Indie label that shares the band’s passion for promoting the city’s rich and growing music scene. Rough Trade records will handle the two releases in the rest of the world.
The recording sessions for the band’s new album WE ALL BELONG yielded material that the band did not feel worked with the album as a whole but seemed to work as an excellent bridge between EASY BEAT and WE ALL BELONG. Dr. Dog released this material as a six song EP, TAKERS AND LEAVERS, this past September. Rolling Stone raved the EP “matches the Shins with smart, retro psych rock.”
Abandoning their usual method of production and opting for a new experience, Dr. Dog recorded WE ALL BELONG on a 24 track, 2-inch tape machine as opposed to their previous releases, which were recorded on their faithful 8-track. A band that thrives on using creative muscle to overcome the inherent limitations of a minimal amount of equipment, the 24-track introduced new possibilities as well as new challenges. Taking full advantage of both, Dr Dog managed to make an album that at once captures the organic spirit that is so important to the band while introducing new layers of vocal harmonies and textured instrumentation the band had only been able to imagine prior.
WE ALL BELONG was recorded for a good part of 2006, in-between headlining dates and a European tour with Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and US dates with The Strokes.
The fall of 2006 marked the beginning of the most exciting stage in Dr. Dog’s career to date. The band toured in support of TAKERS AND LEAVERS beginning with a co-headline run up the west coast in early September with Cold War Kids. After that, the Dogs made their way to Houston, Texas to begin a tour supporting The Raconteurs. In addition, Dr. Dog toured the UK with the Magic Numbers and toured America with The Black Keys.
WE ALL BELONG features all the charms of Dr. Dog’s critically acclaimed album, EASY BEAT, but introduces the listener to a rich complexity only hinted at in the band's earlier work.
Dr. Dog will tour extensively in support of WE ALL BELONG in 2007.
Live On Stage:
Alright we're down to my last profile and its for probably my favorite band at the moment. If you haven't heard of or seen Dr. Dog please do yourself a huge favor and A) go out and pick up We All Belong - it's my favorite album of 2007 and B) GO AND SEE THEM AT BONNAROO - they are absolutely fantastic live. I don't think I've ever seen a band play with as much energy as them. They dance around and genuinely look like they are having a blast on stage. I've seen this band about 5 times already have left with a grin from ear to ear each time. Check them out for yourselves, here they are with an in-store performance of the "The World May Never Know"....
And we'll go with this pretty cool acoustic, impromptu, street performance of "California"....
Got one show for you, which I have actually downloaded awhile back and it's great....
Dr. Dog - 2007-03-21 - The Waiting Room - Omaha, NE
Dr. Dog has two music videos so we'll just go with both. First up is the kind of creepy, video for "Fool's Life"....
And to counteract that the animated one for "My Old Ways"....
For more on Dr. Dog head over to their official website.
Set Time: 6/16, This Tent, 12:45 PM - 1:45 PM
Monday, June 11, 2007