Having been lucky enough to see these lovely chaps last year at what was an exceptional gig, I was keen to hear the latest from the five piece indie band. Hailing from Nottingham they are a pretty standard indie band and this track is nothing extraordinary. That does not however make it necessarily bad, doesn’t take away the fact they are a brilliant live band, nor does it stop the bass player looking bizarrely like my younger brother (WEIRD). The track comes from their debut album All Our Favourite Stories
which is out now to buy.
The track is a chilled, laidback affair with a nice catchy melody and it builds at a good pace to a pleasing climax. I don’t entirely understand the meaning or emotion behind the song, perhaps I am a simple creature but without a story or feeling behind a song I do find it hard to attach myself to a track. It is, however, very pleasant to listen to and is well written. There may be nothing technically wrong with the track, but I just don’t feel it. This makes me a bit sad because they are a band I’ve really liked over the past year, but I guess that’s one of the worst (and best) things about music. It either gets you or it doesn’t. Therefore I am giving this track a 4/10 as I am not a great fan, but I am not going to give up hope with Dog Is Dead as I know they really can be so so brilliant.
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I had anticipated this gig to be good after a brief stalk of Dog is Dead before I went along to see them. However before I get to the awesomeness that is Dog is Dead I have to mention the amazing support. First up was Steven Milne frontman of The Little Kicks, with just his acoustic guitar and powerful earthy vocals he really set the mood for a night of uniquely talented acts. After the chilled atmosphere set by Steven Milne, Kyla La Grange brought a whole new component to the atmosphere, a darkly magical vibe. With impressively powerful, albeit strange vocals, tiny Kyla la Grange wowed her audience. Her songs were supported by haunting instrumentals that built with intensity, which created an atmospheric energy and the expectation of dry ice. She has a unique sound, one I can only describe as dark folk, with poetic lyrics infused with passion . Despite what she called a “whisky and Lemsip situation” Kyla La Grange was on top form.
After both these amazing acts I was starting to feel that the night had probably reached its peak, however it just continued to get better. Dog is Dead are a five piece indie pop band from Nottingham. From the looks of this band they appear to be your average group of chums, a bit of a motley crew to be honest. Yet on closer inspection they are a group of talented artists who infuse a lot of passion into their songs. They engaged the crowd beckoning us all forward to make a more comfortable friendly group, and were pleased to see they had a few dedicated fans singing the words back at them. Their harmonies were excellent, almost reminiscent of choir boys as they hit their high notes. The songs that I had already heard sounded ten times better live owing to their great stage presence, and the songs that I hadn’t heard were so easy to bop along to and enjoy, not to mention they had many girls squealing with lust with their dramatic hair ruffles. All in all, I think I may have found a new favourite band crush.
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So here we have another dose of infectious, truly British indie-pop by the eclectic five-piece, Dog is Dead, who have well and truly made their entrance onto the British indie stage. But they are not the most typical indie group. Probably because they are not characterised by wearing clothes likely to be worn by your grandparents. Hailing from Nottingham, this group is well on its way to becoming a classic part of the oh-so-fashionable indie scene of the now. Having played at Glastonbury in 2010 and supported the Bombay Bicycle Club on their tour earlier this year, its unsurprising they are quickly becoming an integral part of fashionable youth culture. And their latest single, ‘Hands Down’ is certainly a representation of this.
For a start, I expected this indie band to be like any other, with music that often makes me want to fall asleep. The track begins with a very relaxing heartbeat of repetitive strumming and a light drum beat. But as it continues, the drum beat, guitar riffs and even the vocals become considerably stronger and more interesting. The vocals certainly remind me of folk singer Benjamin Frances Leftwich, who I have reviewed previously, but I do think that lead vocalist, Robert Milton, has a much greater range than poor Benjamin. Strangely, there’s even a slice of Matt Bellamy in there, which is just far too confusing! The chorus is sure to be a popular sing-along, with the whole band seeming to be chipping in with the vocals. The much stronger beat of the whole song does make you want to dance around much more than most indie songs do, which is just like I think they should be. And towards the end there is quite a lot of distortion of the guitar, which adds another dimension to the song and keeps you pretty interested. This track is certainly truer to their indie roots, with some evident rock elements and strong vocals (although I don’t really know what he’s saying half the time – but hey, just enjoy the moment). Its good to hear some newcomers that really understand the indie genre, and are certainly not over-produced.
With the band currently working on their much anticipated debut album, which is to released in 2012, I expect that even more frenzy will arise around Dog is Dead. And with their biggest headline show being played in their hometown on the 17th of this month, it seems as though the best is yet to come…
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