Dr. Dog - Shame Shame
Philadelphia's Dr Dog have established a rabidly loyal following for themselves. I must admit that I haven't been among them. In the past I've found their Americana/folk rock to be a bit bland and indistinguishable from hundreds of other bands.
The band's new album, Shame, Shame (out April 6th), has certainly swung things for me though. This batch of songs are far more vibrant and diverse than what we've heard previously from Dr Dog.
On the new album the group have placed a much stronger focus on vocal harmonies and melodies. Songs like "Stranger", "Unbearable Why", and the title track rely heavily on multi-layered deftly arranged vocals to provide a pleasing punch.
The most impressive part of the record is that the band have managed to increase the vocal pop quotient without sacrificing their overarching rootsy focus. While songs like "Where'd All the Time Go?" and the Beatles-esque "I Only Wear Blue" border on trippy psychedelica, they are the exception rather than the rule. It's the country weeper "Station" and the twangy "Jackie Wants a Black Eye" that are more indicative.
It's nice to hear something fresh from Dr Dog. Shame, Shame may not be a masterpiece album, but it definitely helps to ignite my enthusiasm for this much beloved band.
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