Dr. Dog

Live albums used to be a big deal when I was growing up. Like Kozelek, I watched The Song Remains The Same along with listening to Exit…Stage Left, Live At Leeds, The Last Waltz, etc., etc. They seem to have gone somewhat out of vogue recently. Well either this is coincidence or they are making a comeback as some HearYa faves are releasing some live albums in the early part of 2015.

Dr. Dog – Live At A Flamingo Hotel will be out on 1/13/15. “That’s always what we’ve wanted to do,” says bassist/vocalist Toby Leaman. “We’re one thing on a record and a different thing live. Somebody goes to a DR. DOG show and they come back again and they bring more people with them. Our live show is vital to how we view ourselves as a band.” Agreed, Dr. Dog shows are outrageously good. Songs take on a whole new life.

Ty Segall Band – ‘Live in San Francisco’ Series LP Out Jan. 26. I am typically hit or miss with Ty. Some stuff I love, including his last album Manipulator. Some stuff doesn’t connect. But no denying, the man is prolific and talented.

Phosphorescent – Live At The Music Hall on 2/17. Their shows are fucking epic. Matthew Houck has been keeping with the same band for the last few tours and the results have been fantastic. The version of Los Angeles below is outrageously good. “Playing those four shows, it was clear something special was going on,” says Houck. “After eight months of touring, we’d gotten to a really good point where we weren’t quite exhausted yet with the material, but we’d had enough time to really grow with the songs. So we were in that sweet spot where we were pulling something great out of the songs every night.”

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa

Dr. Dog is here Phosphorescent is here Ty Segall is here


Dr. Dog – B-Room

by Woody on October 1, 2013


Last time I took a cross-country flight, I slipped myself a Xanax with a glass of wine and I was gone-goodbye. I had set myself up with a quality playlist comprised of some choice tracks from Dead bootlegs and entered into some sort of fugue state. A few hours later when I was awoken by the flight attendant, I was all but convinced I was venturing into the Garden to catch me a Dead Show – could practically smell the patchouli and marijuana. Took me a few minutes to get my bearings to realize I was landing at ORD instead.

You’re probably asking yourself, “Self, what does this have to do with the new Dr. Dog album?” Great question. My answer is – I wonder if the boys from Philly had a similar experience but substituted Motown for the Dead. B-Room has the chill vibe that harkens to a period from years ago with spot-on production making it an absolute brilliant listen. Scott McMicken’s bass rumbles along throughout the album and along with Eric Slick’s drumming lays the foundation for an album that never gets overly worked up or caught up in itself.

The recording of B-Room coincided with the band renovating an old mill outside of Philly being transformed into their new recording space. The band has commented in interviews that being around each for some time before recording allowed them to be more at ease with the process as there was no re-acclimating needed once they flipped on the record button.

B-Room contains all the trademarks of Dr. Dog albums. The opening tracks The Truth, Broken Heart and Minding The Usher set such a nice tone. The songs ease out of the speakers, dripping with harmonies and soul. The twangy Phenomenon and stripped down folk-ballad, Too Weak To Ramble are a nice interlude in the middle of the album. Rock & Roll and Love help close the album on high notes.

I’ve always said 2008’s Fate would be a tough act to top and it remains one of my favorite releases in the last 10 years or so. B-Room is the closest they have come in three albums since.

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa

Dr. Dog is here


Dr. Dog set to release B-Room on October 1

by Woody on September 4, 2013


Dr. Dog are set to follow up the phenomenal, Be The Void, with B-Room. It will see the light of the day on 10/1/13 via Anti Records.

The lead track, The Truth, is below. Like the video full of old Philly footage, the tune definitely harkens of yesteryear. B-Room was recorded in the band’s new studio that they built out of scratch in an old silversmith mill. Talking with Shirk during the time he set up his new studio, I can attest of the ordeal that must have been. Here’s their take on the process:

By building a space first and releasing all of that emotion, the band was then free to engage in their creative process without the expectation or preconception that they admittedly had brought into other sessions. Recorded primarily in live takes, the songs seamlessly fuse the spontaneity of the band’s live performances with the intricacy of their kaleidoscopic composition. Both Leaman and guitarist Scott McMicken credit their sonic evolution with relying less on the pre-produced demos and more with a reliance on the musicians surrounding them.


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.

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Dr. Dog – That Old Black Hole from new album, Be The Void [New Video]

November 29, 2011

Dr. Dog (one of my personal favs) are releasing their new album Be The Void on February 7th via Anti- Records. They just released a video of “That Old Black Hole” and it features a hamster exercising. Tweet

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Dr. Dog play gig for elderly roller skating daredevils. [New Video]

October 13, 2010

Not quite done with Dr. Dog yet. They recently the video for “Shadow People” last month and we forgot to post it. It features experienced roller skaters. Very experienced. Video: Dr. Dog – Shadow People Tweet

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Dr. Dog releases Nobody Knows Who You Are [new mp3]

October 13, 2010

Dr. Dog are releasing a deluxe edition of their latest album, Shame, Shame on November 2nd in digital format. It’ll include four new songs and will also be available as a 7″ at upcoming Dr. Dog shows. You can find Shame, Shame listed as on of our best albums of 2010 so far. Here’s one […]

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Dr. Dog ex-drummer Justin Stens offers Free EP [Free Album]

July 31, 2010

Justin Stens and The Get Real Gang are offering their debut EP as a free download via Park The Van Records for a limited time. It’ll be available for about a week and a half. Justin was the drummer for Dr. Dog for six years and five albums and has decided to move on to […]

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Juston Stens – Goodbye Dr. Dog, Hello to Himself

May 25, 2010

Don’t you love it when you stumble upon a myspace music page where the songs have only been listen to a couple hundred times? You never know what you’re going to get. 90% of the time it’s complete crap, 5% of the time it’s great, and the other 5% of the time it shows promise […]

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Dr. Dog releases Stranger from captivity [new mp3]

March 10, 2010

Dr. Dog are releasing Shame, Shame on April 6th. With the exception of The Drive-By Truckers upcoming release, this is my most anticipated album of 2010. “Stranger” is available below for your downloading pleasure. Dr. Dog – Stranger Tweet

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