Dr. Dog – Be The Void [Album Review]

by Woody on February 8, 2012

Soon after receiving my long-awaited advanced copy of Be The Void, Oz asked me what I thought. “I’m digging it. It’s old school Dr. Dog. A return to the We All Belong years.” I liked their last record, Shame Shame, but it felt like they were trying to outdo its previous record, Fate, which is the high-mark in their catalog. On this release, it feels like the band stopped over-thinking – just cut themselves loose and let things come more naturally. Be The Void harkens back to the day when they were banging out tracks on an 8-track with a devil may care attitude.

“We worked quicker and trusted our gut more than ever before, and at times it was scary and almost panic-inducing,” says guitarist/vocalist Scott McMicken. “All of a sudden you’d be aware of a feeling like, ‘This is really working, so don’t mess it up.’ And then the song ends and your heart’s pounding and you realize you haven’t taken a breath in three minutes. It was like riding a rollercoaster and wishing you could get right back on again.”

Be The Void is a collection of a dozen tunes that are are crisp, full of bounce and lacking any over-production that would cloud the gobs of talent that these guys possess.The opening track, “Lonesome,” is a boozy romp that wears The Beatles influence on its sleeve. From there Scott McMicken and Toby Leaman trade vocal duties over an excellent collection of songs. And then on “Warrior Man,” Dr. Dog shows their love for another influence – The Kinks.

Much like Rocky in Rocky V, these Philly rockers had to get back to their roots to find out what makes them a truly special band. Watch out Tommy Morrison. And if you ever get the opportunity to see them live, make it happen. I’ve taken people to see them in concert who didn’t know one song going in. In both instances, they were floored.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Matt Bialer February 9, 2012 at 6:00 pm

I really like the new record. If you like Dr. Dog you like the new record. Period.

I read Pitchfork’s review which gave me a good laugh. I guess Dr. Dog is not as cool as the ultra cutting edge Vampire Weekend.

Don’t miss Dr. Dog live. They are a great retro band AND they have their own sound AND they rock. It spells FUN.

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