Dr. Dog: Dogos with Doctorates

*I would like to go ahead and say that this is not a review of Dr. Dogs complete discography*

Dr. Dog released a new album in November of this past year and it has only just now made its way to Spotify which is where I do all my music streaming. So am I a little behind the curve, yes I am. I am very excited about this album so I am going to write about it for the uninformed much like myself.

If you havent heard of Dr. Dog I wouldnt be surprised. They are a lo-fi folk outfit with very little mainstream  presence. The only reason I even know who they are is because a friend of mine happened to stumble upon them one night. Their most recent album “Abandoned Mansions” is a wonderful chilled out trip from beginning to end. I would go so far as to say that it will be my go to album when summer rolls around.

The album starts with a slow build and repetitive chorus that will slide its way into the back of your mind and linger there for hours after you listen to it. The lyrics at first just fall into place without second thought but the more it repeats itself the more weight the words bare.

“I’m what I am, instead of whatever I’m not”

This line followed with “falling so casually” so subtle in their delivery of their belief of drifting through life. We are all just trying to enjoy all the good moments and this song reminded me of this. The next track “Ladada” takes its place picking up the pace and easing us along into track number three “Jim Song” which sounds like it was torn straight from Bob Dylans head. What really sets me up to think this is of how the singers voice is so raw and exposed not to mention it opens with a smooth harmonica solo. Love lost and love you wish would leave is a theme touched up on a few of the tracks though it’s most obvious in “Jim Song”.

Survive” The fourth ,and my favorite, track is probably the most upbeat and is the biggest cause of my Summer envy. I find my self bouncing along to its plucky guitar and train like drums. “I Saw Her for the First Time” reals the mood back in with its string section backing and sweet lyrics. A true love at first sight track that has me even now pinning for this emotion.

“I’d never seen a room light up like that…”

Like damn… If I were ever told that I light a room up i’d be swooning  to the moon. “Peace of Mind” is a powerful nearly ballad that tightens up the middle of this album with a firm length of rope. “Could’ve Happened to Me” has the simplest rock organ part that reminds me of the best stuff out of the sixties.

From here “Both Sides of the Line” tells a tale of self conflict with an incredibly western sound. “I know” for me personally fell by the way side; It’s a pretty song sure but it didnt stand out for me. This leaves us with the final track (title track) “Abandoned Mansion” which does a great job of trying everything together. All the built up emotions come trickling out in five minutes of sustained chill vibes. To sum it all up I dont think its possible for Dr. Dog to falter even a bit. I give this album one great big thumbs up.



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