Dr. Dog – B-Room Album Review

On October 1 Dr. Dog released their highly anticipated new album B-Room which RollingStone.com is currently streaming offering listeners a chance to hear the record in its entirety. In addition the site is featuring an interview with the band who have just announced a new series of 2014 live dates.

In recent years the Philadelphia band has emerged as one of the pre-eminent rock bands around, attracting a rapidly growing fan base with their imaginative song writing and a now legendary live show which the New York Times Magazine blog 6th Floor recently described as “the best house party ever.”

Dr. Dog

Dr. Dog

The previous months have been a time of enthusiastic construction for Dr. Dog. First they built a new recording studio in an old mill and then set about assembling a supremely soulful new album in B–Room which delightfully mines and expands upon the surrounding landscape of Philadelphia soul. The tracks on B-Room were captured primarily live in-studio. As a result the rollicking groove and beloved musical interchange which has been delighting live audiences resonates throughout the disc.

B-Room is a wonderful album that offers you everything. There’s soul, rock, pop and ballads among many more genres. Not one song sounds the same and at times, the songs don’t even sound like the same band is performing them. Dr. Dog manage to sound completely different in every song on B-Room making it an album that you will never get bored of listening to.

Track one The Truth starts with a pumping drum beat which is gradually accompanied by a string melody and keyboard. The song is calming with its slow stuttered guitar riffs and soft vocals. However, previous release Broken Heart spices the record up instantly. It’s a track that has a danceable beat. The chorus, “She really loved him/But I couldn’t see it though/He really loved her/But I don’t believe it oh no” is catchy with the music’s fast tempo and quickly sung lyrics adding to the lively nature of this track.

Minding The Usher brings in slightly Jimi Hendrix inspired soulful guitar riffs against a backdrop of deep bass and soft drums. The vocals sound entirely different from the previous tracks making it hard to recognise this track as part of the same album but this is what makes it so fantastic to listen to.

Phenomenon introduces some country into B-Room. The banjo plays at the beginning with the drums and fiddles slowly kicking in. This song has a great rhythm and melody that will leave it floating around in your head long after you listen to it. After Phenomenon’s upbeat colourful explosion on B-Room comes Too Weak To Ramble, the first ballad on Dr. Dog’s newest album. The vocals intensify all the emotions that the lyrics help to portray. The verse, “Too weak to try/Too drunk to stay up/Too grown to lie/I always told myself I would make it harder here alive/But I’m too weak to ramble” shows true emotion being expressed through the strained, almost tearful vocals.

Cuckoo, on the other hand, sounds like its sauntered straight out of the 70s – this sort of authentic, old rock sound isn’t always pulled off very successfully but Dr. Dog are an exception. Cuckoo has soulful rock vocals that resemble Jimi Hendrix and guitar riffs, drum rhythms and harmonies that place this song snugly in the 70s where it belongs. The harmonies resemble those of Neil Young in Cowgirl In The Sand and Southern Man.

The AV Club has recently premiered a new lyric video for the song Love from B-Room. The new video combines footage from vintage toy commercials with the song’s bittersweet lyrics. Love is a beautiful modern love song with the chorus’ lyrics, “Love can it/Last all my life/As it passes…” highlighting this.

Dr. Dog have produced a more than perfect album in B-Room. There isn’t a song that doesn’t live up to your expectations of this band. B-Room is a superb record and by far one of the best released in 2013. It’s a true triumph from musical genii.

You can catch Dr. Dog live on the following dates with Lumineers:
October 4 Chaifetz Arena St. Louis MO
October 8 Mud Island Amphitheatre Memphis TN
October 9 Tuscaloosa Amphitheater Tuscaloosa AL
October 12 Ryman Auditorium Nashville TN
October 13 Ryman Auditorium Nashville TN
October 14 Ryman Auditorium Nashville TN
October 16 UNO Lakefront Arena New Orleans LA
October 18 St. Augustine Amp St. Augustine FL
October 19 USF Sun Dome Tampa FL
October 20 Sunset Cove Amphitheater Boca Raton FL

Dr. Dog’s headline dates for 2013:
October 11 Atlanta, GA The Masquerade
November 01 Pittsburgh PA ,Stage AE
November 02 Louisville KY, Headliners Music Hall
November 03 Asheville NC, The Orange Peel
November 05 Richmond VA, The National
November 06 Charlotttville, SC Jefferson Theater
November 07 Columbus OH, Newport Music Hall
November 08 Toronto, On Phoenix Concert Theater
November 09 Detroit MI, Majestic Theater
November 11 Cleveland OH, House Of Blues
November 14 Boston, MA, House of Blues
November 16 Baltimore MA Rans Head Live

Dr. Dog headline dates for 2014:
Jan-25 New York, NY Terminal 5
Jan-27 Buffalo, NY Town Ballroom
Jan-28 Burlington, VT Higher Ground
Jan-31 Philadelphia, PA Electric Factory
Feb-01 Philadelphia, PA Electric Factory
Feb-03 Cincinatti, OH Madison Theatre
Feb-05 Milwaukee, Wi Turner Hall
Feb-06 Minneapolis, MN First Avenue
Feb-07 Minneapolis, MN First Avenue
Feb-20 Houston, TX Warehouse Live
Feb-21 Austin, TX Stubb’s
Feb-22 Dallas, TX House of Blues
Feb-24 Phoenix, AZ Crescent
Feb-25 Phoenix, AZ Crescent
Feb-26 Santa Ana, CA Observatory
Feb-28 Santa Cruz, CA Catalyst
Mar-01 San Francisco, CA Warfield
Mar-03 Portland, OR Crystal Ballroom
Mar-04 Vancouver, BC Venue
Mar-05 Seattle, WA Neptune Theater
Mar-07 Salt Lake City, UT Complex
Mar-08 Boulder, CO Boulder Theater
Mar-10 Lawrence, KS Liberty Hall
Mar-11 Omaha, NE Slowdown
Mar-14 Washington, DC 9:30 Club

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