Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Review: Dog Society “Emerge”


Recently covered in our “You Were Robbed” feature, Dog Society comes barking back with plenty of bite this September 25 with the long, long-awaited follow up to their 1993 debut album, “Test Your Own Eyes” (see our previous feature here). This New York band was critically acclaimed for their unique blend of rock, funk, and folk, and the new album, “Emerge” seeks to pick right up where they left off.

Dog Society has remained ever-present on the NYC rock circuit. Influenced by classic pop-rock artists such as The Who and The Beatles, their songs remain centered on melody with crisp production and warm harmonies. The band is often a tribute to the best of AM radio and “Emerge” contains a collection of well-crafted tunes that present elements of 70s songwriting in a contemporary framework.

The new record begins with the radiant “Being Here”, which is lyrically appropriate for a comeback, and it’s huge Beatles inspired chorus will be stuck in your head for days. The band quickly shifts to a mild bossa nova beat to begin “A Good Friend”, but come rearing right back with crunchy guitars to decorate another sugary chorus. First single “The Fuse Begins” shines with overtones of the debut record’s sound, and the pleasantly breezy acoustic verses are the perfect soundtrack to summer’s end. The Lennon inspired melodies resurface in a big way on “Pink Sun”, which could perhaps be considered a musical sequel to “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”. “Suffer A Smile” is also an irresistible little earworm. The album closes with “Salt”, which is just the right seasoning to top off this listening experience. There’s only a couple puzzling items, such as the distorted experimentation that blunts “Shade Grown” and the wildly dissonant “Spaceboots” - these are for the more adventurous listener. There is also less funk rock in the mix, but plenty of acoustic-based jams that stay focused on a good melody.

It’s remarkable to me how “at home” the band sounds after a near 20 year absence on record. “Emerge” will surely please fans of “Test Your Own Eyes” and should pull in some new recruits as well. Unlike a lot of reunion efforts that are just about the cash, Dog Society sounds genuine and fresh, passionate about the music...so go fetch!

Dog Society – Official site.

Check out the video for “The Fuse Begins”

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