Dog Society – Emerge Album Review

New York band Dog Society are to release their new album Emerge as an independent release 19 years after their well-received debut, Test Your Own Eyes which was released by Atlantic/East West Records. They explain the gap simply as: “…life getting in the way”.

Dog Society’s newest record, Emerge, was co-produced by Rob Schnaapf and Tom Rothrock (Beck, Elliot Smith) meaning Emerge is the sound of the band recapturing their spirit.

Dog Society are tricky to pin down in terms of musical style and genre. They definitely are American rock yet a Beatlesesque Sgt Pepper style seeps through occasionally as in the opening track Being Here and later track, Pink Sun.

The second track A Good Friend slightly oddly combines a sweet accessible vocal and acoustic guitar in the verses but dropping into heavy rock for the choruses. This combination works much better on Scraped which has echoes also of Nirvana with tortured lyrics: “Crawling round a white padded room..”

There’s musical talent here and Dog Society are not afraid to use it. But perhaps the 19 years account for a coming together of too many ideas all at once. The mix of songs on the album can be confusing, almost experimental. Shade Grown is reminiscent of some Pink Floyd numbers and the Bowie style Spaceboots is possibly close to genius if the production could only keep up with what this track has to offer.

The Fuse Before and Suffer A Smile are more cohesive and accessible, the latter is rather sweet and catchy in a groovy Californian fashion.

The album artwork is delightful. This band has a lot to offer but perhaps they just need taming a tad.

Emerge is out on November 19.

By Kate Dexter

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