Tuesday, August 21, 2007

News:: The Golden Dogs Release Album in US, Return To Halifax

Out here in Halifax, folks can be quite sensitive about the fact that we don't have many major "events". We don't have any major sports here, and we're not exactly on the map for most major concerts. And it's the music thing that most people complain about. The Maritimes being an area that prides itself on being musically rich, the fact that we don't get "big" concerts here seems to chap our collective asses. Thing is, we do get plenty of great live shows here, if you've willing to take time out of your Facebook campaign to bring the Timbersnake here, and look for them. Case in point, The Golden Dogs, who are playing The Attic September 6th.

The Golden Dogs call Toronto home and what even the laziest bit of research will tell you is that they are quite well known for their energetic live shows. Although I'd heard of the band (they played The Marquee's New Year's Eve show this year with Joel Plaskett), I hadn't actually heard anything from them until I got a press release for their latest Halifax show. And now that I have a copy of their latest full-length, Big Eye Little Eye, I'm realizing I slept on a great band. Vocal duties are handled by the husband and wife team of Dave Azzolini and Jessica Grassia, with Dave handling the majority of the work and Jessica providing some capable backup vocals and even taking the lead for one track (Construction Worker). The band's former bassist Taylor Knox mans the skins while Neil Quin and Stew Heyduk round out the roster on guitar and bass respectively.

After my first listen to Big Eye Little Eye, I had a good idea why their live show is so highly regarded. The Dogs make raucous, energetic pop music that remains very catchy from start to finish. Not only that, but the album is eclectic, running from 80's electro influenced sounds to straight ahead indie rock, all the while still being enjoyable as hell.

The up-tempo DYNAMO kicks things at a frenetic pace with guitar and keys alternating to create a mighty catchy song. Never Meant Any Harm is currently my favorite song. 80's synth blips and bleeps mixed with a solid kick drum and some guitar make for an addictive combo. The highly singable chorus doesn't hurt either. Jessica takes over lead vocals on the Dog Day sounding Construction Worker, which asks the questions anyone who's ever had a house built is all too familiar with "When will it be done/Will it ever be done". Forget Green Day and that other band, The Golden Dogs could have the new theme song for my Saints with the thumping, piano-infused Saints At The Gates.

Those first 4 songs are good enough alone to check out Big Eye Little Eye, but there's plenty of goodness left in the album. The bass-driven Runoutaluck is kind of dance-punkish and certainly makes it hard to sit still when it's on. The mellow Theresea is a beautiful tribute to Brian Wilson. Nineteen Hundred and Eighty Five pays a different kind of tribute to another musical legend, as it's a fairly faithful rendition of the Wings song. It is not only faithful, but plenty enjoyable as well. I'm not sure if the original version has a ripping facemelter in it, but this one does, and I'm all for it. Dave and Jessica share vocal duties on Force Of Nature, a classic modern pop song that opens with piano, closes with horns, and is excellent in between.

So to recap: The Golden Dogs are great, I did not know this. Their latest album Big Eye Little Eye is great, I now know this. The Dogs play Halifax September 6th, now you know this (tickets you say? Get some here). As for our American friends, as of this month, there is no reason for you to sleep on the Golden Dogs, as their album has just been released on Yep Roc records. Yep Roc is currently Sloan's American home, so you know they know Canadian goodness when it mashes them into the boards. On top of that, the Dogs will be embarking on a lengthy US tour this fall, including Jack Rabbits in the hill's favorite Northern Florida city, Jacksonville. We'll have to check with T-Dizzle Dreher to see if Jack Rabbit's is near the Smokey Bones or the parking lot where they race r/c cars on Sundays. Either way, you can check the Dogs tour schedule on myspace. If you get the chance, check out the Golden Dogs in your area.

mp3:: The Golden Dogs - Never Meant Any Harm

mp3:: The Golden Dogs - Construction Worker

Posted at 7:02 AM by naedoo :: 0 comments

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