There is an old proverb dating back to the year two thousand that goes something like “If Dr. Dog didn’t play a show, did summer ever really begin in Philadelphia?” And though it’s a rhetorical question, don’t doubt the power of a good doctor. Case in point – everything in my technological wheelhouse stated that we were due for a storm, probably a big one. Scott, Toby, Zach, Eric, and Frank had other plans, and the rain that was threatening to cancel their show never showed up. It’s a rare ability, and quite frankly impossible to prove, but there were nothing but believers in the house at Festival Pier on Saturday night. Continue reading →
Maybe it’s those 90+ degree temps. Maybe it’s just that a lot of the best gigs are sold out. But it’s a quieter week than we’ve seen in a while for live music here in Philly. But that still means shows almost every day, including the possibility of setting up camp at Festival Pier on Friday night and staying straight through Paramore on Sunday. Here are nine concerts to see in Philadelphia in the next seven days. Continue reading →
Great news for people who like to look at Dr. Dog: you can watch three new videos of the beloved Philly rockers playing (and dancing to) songs from their recent album Critical Equation.
Last month, they celebrated the album’s release with a first-time-ever Free at Midnight concert at World Cafe Live, which you can check out a recap of here. Before the show, the band ducked into the XPN library to warm up with some acoustic renditions of songs from the new album. Fortunately for all of us, NPR was there to capture the intimate performance and has now released that footage as a part of their Night Owl video series, which you can watch below. Continue reading →
To cap the release day of their tenth studio album Critical Equation, Philly rockers Dr. Dog took the World Cafe Live stage at the stroke of midnight to a packed house of fans. WXPN’s first-ever #FreeAtMidnight concert saw the band stretching out across a 90-minute set, highlighting seven of the album’s ten songs. Continue reading →
In a way, Dr. Dog has returned to its roots through a process of reinvention.
On the surface, Critical Equation — the tenth album from the Philadelphia rock band, which you can take an early listen to down below — sounds like another true-to-form installment in their catalog. Its uplifting vocals and left-of-center tones and textures could have sat easily alongside the psych-tinged anthems of 2008’s Fate, or 2010’s Shame, Shame, or 2012’s Be The Void. It doesn’t necessarily feel “new”; maybe we could say it’s refined, an older/wiser take on Dr. Dog’s younger selves. But the way the band arrived at this point was hardly direct. Continue reading →
Hometown heroes Dr. Dog are back after a three-year hiatus, with a new album Critical Equation, out April 17th. After releasing 2016’s Abandoned Mansion and The Psychedelic Swamp, they were able to use their time off for a period of collective soul searching which led to a creative rebirth. Continue reading →
After a quiet year and change, Philly rock five-piece Dr. Dog is back with a new single, a new album on the way and a tour that has the band headlining Festival Pier at Penn’s Landing on Saturday, June 23rd; Philly house show scene favorite (Sandy) Alex G opens the night.
The new single from the band’s forthcoming tenth album Critical Equation, out on Thirty Tigers on April 27th, marks a surprising first impression from the band; “Listening In” is dark, it’s pensive, unrelentingly so. As I wrote on NPR Music’s Songs We Love this morning, “It’s the moment of realization just before emotional trauma hits home; it’s a sadness so profound that it can’t be spun into a lighthearted song.” Continue reading →
Surprise! There’s a new Dr. Dog album out today that no one knew existed (except the band and I’m guessing some of their friends). To sweeten the deal even more, all proceeds from the album go toward the Southern Poverty Law Center.
The album, called Abandoned Mansion, is what the band described in an introductory missive as “Easy Peasy listening.” That’s to say that, as opposed to the “blips and bloops” of the band’s February release, The Psychedelic Swamp, Abandoned Mansion takes a more simplistic, traditional approach.
Drummer Eric Slick, who doubles as one-third of Philly’s Lithuania, said that the band actually recorded Abandoned Mansion before The Psychedelic Swamp, but had to let it sit on the backburner for a bit.
“We recorded it before we went into the studio to record The Psychedelic Swamp with the intention of getting it out before The Psychedelic Swamp,” he says.
In contrast to Swamp’s complex layering and production ambition, Abandoned Mansion is pretty much just the band playing live with mostly acoustic instruments.
“The intent of the record was to make something simple and elegant,” Slick says. “I think we’ve kind of gone into different trends in the band. We’ve moved toward this more psychedelic, noisier side—an experimental side—and then we’ve got this simpler side. So it’s just another exploration of our simpler side.” Continue reading →
Happy Record Store Day everyone! Tonight, San Fran folk rockers Thao and the Get Down Stay Down take on Underground Arts with support from Saintseneca and Little Scream. Thao Nyugen and company are touring to celebrate the release of their recent album A Man Alive. For tickets and more information, check out the XPN Concert Calendar.Continue reading →
It’s not often that a band can achieve a certain cult-status in their own lifetime before fading into either cheesiness or obscurity. A road diverged in the woods for Dr. Dog, and instead of falling by the wayside or chalking the whole thing off, they became living Philadelphia legends. Coming up on a decade and a half of jamming hard, the road warriors returned from a long haul and celebrated in style on Thursday night at The Fillmore—one of the few Philly venues they’d left to conquer, by virtue of its youth. Continue reading →