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Dr. Dog have been a band for over a decade now, Philadelphia-based throughout. Their hometown hasn’t factored much into their sound, which throws back to the Beatles-era of the classic rock school, or their themes and lyrical schemes. That’s changed with “Shadow People,” the first single form the band’s forthcoming, fifth LP Shame, Shame, a track they’ve called a “full-on West Philly diary.” The sound’s the same, decidedly not of their hometown in this time or even a past one, but the scenes painted by guitarist vocalist Scott McMicken are documenting his neighborhood, now, a section of Philly that can be shoddy, dangerous, and artistically vibrant, in turns but often at once. He says:

It’s a weird, insular little community, and there’s a lot going on and a lot of crazy, flamboyant characters and a lot of porch life and coffee shops. But for me, it was kind of overwhelming, and I had overextended myself into the lives of a lot of wacky people, because those are the type of people that I gravitate towards the most. But sometimes I bite off more than I can chew and get taken advantage of. I was exhausted with my neighborhood and I let it into me a little too much … Philly has been such a big part of our lives, and I feel like on this record it finally took over and made its way into our music. There’s a line that says, “I stole a bike from the Second Mile and saw a band play in the basement.” The Second Mile is this thrift around the corner from my house, and there’s so many basement shows in West Philly, like noisy, artsy bands. I wanted to write something about the people and places around me.

It’s here:

Dr. Dog’s Shame, Shame is out 4/6 via Anti-. MMJ’s Jim James turns up for some vocals on this record, so keep ears out. As far as tours go, Dr. Dog’s in for Bonnaroo, and a lot of other dates, too:

02/09 – Rock Island, IL @ Rock Island Brewing Co. #
02/10 – Cleveland, OH # @ Case Western University #
02/11 – Bloomington, IN @ Video Saloon #
02/12 – Columbus, OH @ Newport Music Hall #
02/13 – State College, PA @ State Theatre #
04/14 – Toronto, Ont. @ Lee’s Place
04/15 – Ann Arbor, MI @ Blind Pig
04/16 – Chicago, IL @ Metro
04/17 – Minneapolis, MN @ Fine Line
04/19 – Aspen, CO @ Belly Up
04/20 – Denver, CO @ Gothic Theatre
04/22 – Boise, ID @ Neuolux
04/23 – Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom
04/24 – San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall
04/25 – San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall *
04/27 – Los Angeles, CA @ Henry Fonda *
04/29 – Santa Fe, NM @ Santa Fe Brewing Company *
04/30 – Dallas, TX @The Loft *
05/01 – Austin, TX @ Emo’s Outside *
05/02 – Houston, TX @ Warehouse Live Studio *
05/03 – Fayetteville, AR @ Majestic *
05/05 – Birmingham, AL @ Workplay *
05/06 – Nashville, TN @ Cannery Ballroom *
05/07 – Louisville, KY @ Headliners *
05/11-12 – Boston, MA @ Paradise *
05/13 – Philadelphia, PA @ Electric Factory *
05/14 – Washington DC @ 9:30 Club *
05/15 – New York, NY @ Terminal 5 *
05/23 – Berlin, Germany @ Magnet
05/24 – Koln, Germany @ Blue Shell
05/25 – Amsterdam, Netherlands @ Paradiso
05/26 – London, England @ Tabernacle
05/27 – Paris, France @ Nouveau Casino
05/29 – Barcelona, Spain (Primavera Sound)
06/11-13 Manchester, TN (Bonnaroo)

# w/ The Growlers
* w/ Deertick

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Comments (52)
  1. Sweet. I was waiting for this. Hopefully get to catch them on one of their dates.

  2. Matt  |   Posted on Feb 9th, 2010 0

    Great new song. I’m very excited for Shame, Shame. Make sure to still join their facebook page to help get them out there!

  3. VLAD  |   Posted on Feb 9th, 2010 0

    I’ve tried many times, but I have yet to find a reason to get excited about these guys. Everything they do, some other band does far better.

    • In my opinion Dr. Dog capture a lot of the crunchier, rockier moments of the White Album while still being incredibly melodically inclined. Their harmonies may not be revolutionary, but they rock me just right. What bands are you thinking of that out-do the Dog?

    • Veg  |   Posted on Feb 10th, 2010 0

      Vlad, are you drunk. Everything they do someone else does better?? No one can come close to what they are doing, in fact, no one does what they are doing…..4 part harmony, 27 different instruments, mind blowing guitar riffs, etc.

    • VLAD, I felt the same way a couple years ago and I now feel stupid for it. Listen to Fate twice and you’ll never look back. “The Ark” is a good song for beginners just because it’s fucking dark and gnarly. But they’re actually quite a bright and inspiring band.

      I have to take issue with the introductory blurb here though, like Joe below, as I’ve always thought that Philly factored very heavily into their sound and themes.

    • name someone who does it better then these guys then? Please …

  4. mike  |   Posted on Feb 9th, 2010 0

    Great new tune, guys! …..and thanks for the shout out to us here in Baltimore!

  5. Sorry, Mike, but Baltimore the city is not the recipient of the shout-out. It is Baltimore Avenue, in West Philly. I live a block away, so I’m pretty sure I can claim that shout-out for myself. I win!

  6. Strawberry Letter  |   Posted on Feb 9th, 2010 0

    Charlie Kaufman’s gonna win an oscar yet…

  7. andy  |   Posted on Feb 9th, 2010 0

    god this is good

  8. Josh  |   Posted on Feb 9th, 2010 0

    I love this band.

  9. VLAD, watch this and tell me it doesn’t rock—www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNTt6SPyJrs . Then listen to the albums We All Belong, Takers and Leavers, and Fate, and tell me they don’t rock too. If you aren’t a fan by then…well, you’ve got questionable taste.

  10. Joe  |   Posted on Feb 9th, 2010 0

    The comment about Philly not factoring much into their sound is a little funny, because that sort of Beatles-esque, psych pop has been a huge part of the Philly sound for the past decade; their are so many bands like that here. Of course, a lot of that may be BECAUSE of Dr. Dog.

  11. Delroy  |   Posted on Feb 9th, 2010 0

    Is it true that Vlad lost his ears in a tragic Sum 41 marathon listening session? That’s what I heard.

  12. linus  |   Posted on Feb 10th, 2010 0

    this is stellar i can’t wait for the new album

  13. Great new song!!! Cheers!!!

  14. I’m really digging this track and am super excited for a new album. I do hate that their not coming near me.

    http://cigarettesandludes.wordpress.com/

  15. Phil McGowan  |   Posted on Feb 10th, 2010 0

    This song is incredible!!! I’m so happy, but how can I wait until April 6th? By the way, screw you Vlad, go rock your Linkin Park cds.

  16. Joe  |   Posted on Feb 10th, 2010 0

    The new song is impressive. Can’t wait to hear the rest of the album.

  17. Alex  |   Posted on Feb 10th, 2010 0

    This has definitely got me excited for the album. Great song

  18. zeebo  |   Posted on Feb 10th, 2010 0

    I love Dr. Dog, one of my favorite bands, and I am very excited about their new album, but reading that Jim James is lending his vocals to the album pisses me off…….hopefully only one song, but even if, that is one song too many. I am getting tired of him and his large ego (Yim Yames, etc..), and Dr. Dog does not need him featured on their album….EVER!!

  19. VLAD  |   Posted on Feb 10th, 2010 0

    Sum 41?! Linkin Park?! Just what year do you people think it is right now? I would have thought that kind of lazy shorthand went out of style years ago. Then again, you are all Dr. Dog fans, so clearly you don’t care much for relevance.

  20. jim james was instrumental in springing dr. dog, offering them an opening slot on some shows with him and mmj which they used their earnings to buy the microphone needed to create easy beat. scott’s also made a point of saying his favorite band is jim’s my morning jacket. the guy has an amazing voice. i think it’s awesome that he contributed to shame, shame. i wish i was going to bonnaroo now.

  21. Delroy  |   Posted on Feb 10th, 2010 0

    Just to clarify Jim James adds vocals to “shame, shame” the song, and it’s just harmonizing the chorus. And Vlad, how about you get really “into” a band for five minutes and disown them when your friends find out about them.

  22. Jon Andersen  |   Posted on Feb 11th, 2010 0

    ERIC SLICK

  23. I can’t believe I missed this premiere until today. Being an aspiring musician, (loser with sales job)I have been wasting my time at Pitchfork with VLAD catching up on “what’s hot and unlistenable” and “who’s wasting our time being derivative.” I fucking love Dr. Dog, they are all that is good about rock and the vicissitudes of modern electronic innovation. If The Band, CSNY, Beatles were recording today they would be proud to sound like this. I’m not saying that Scott’s voice is as sweet as Paul’s or Stephen Stills, but Toby can hang with Helter Skelter anyday. And bottom line, Jim James is great, and he’s lucky to be singing on this, Yim Yames sounded like he recorded it hammered at different speeds.

    Now I will anxiously await another 5.5 review of this album over at Pitchfork, c’mon VLAD, let’s go listen to the new Four Tet and snark together.

    • Agreed completly, bands like Dr. Dog literally keep getting dogged on by Pitchfork, yet Lady gaga’s ratings go up (7.8?) Really glad Dr. Dog is back, can’t wait for the album to drop, keep it up.

      • Cale  |   Posted on Feb 16th, 2010 0

        Bands like this get dogged by Pitchfork because they suck! Bad Romance is better than anything I’ve ever heard from Dr. Dog! And Four Tet Slays Dr. Dog as well!

  24. Marc   |   Posted on Feb 11th, 2010 0

    The new track is fantastic. I’m glad we get something to enjoy while waiting for the new album. April 6th can’t come fast enough. Thank you Dr. Dog!

  25. Dr. Dog is officially on my radar. Does anyone feel the singer here sounds a little like Wayne Coyne? No Flaming Lips comparison’s here though seeing that the music does have that beatle-esque feel to it. Definitely a great track though.

    • adam  |   Posted on Feb 12th, 2010 0

      ya totally! i’ve been listening to them for a few years now and never drew that comparison before, but sounds just like he’s singing she don’t use jelly. you could almost interchange the lyrics during the verses

  26. Wes  |   Posted on Feb 11th, 2010 0

    They did not disappoint! Fantastic work guys, but now I can’t wait any longer for the album!

  27. Marc Amibros  |   Posted on Feb 11th, 2010 0

    A fantastic song. Sounds very autobiographical, Great subtle psychedelic textues and of course angelic harmonies. Can’t wait for April 6th. Cheers to Dr. Dog!

  28. Marc Amibros  |   Posted on Feb 11th, 2010 0

    A fantastic song. Sounds very autobiographical, Great subtle psychedelic textues and of course angelic harmonies. Can’t wait for April 6th. Cheers to Dr. Dog!

  29. Easy Beat continues to be in my top 5 “Getting drunk to and singing to” Cd’s. I live a foooollss lifeeeeeeee, and now i’m dead”

  30. here here  |   Posted on Feb 12th, 2010 0

    dr.doooog good to hear they are getting part of what they deserve (as my arm pit leaves a single drop of sweat down the back of my arm) i am also glad pfork pans there albums = dr.dog doesnt need em.

  31. I really love this band. Glad to see they still have that great classic sound.

  32. Got my ticket for the NYC show woo! Now i gotta wait til May aww. But at least the album will be out before then.

  33. Nickdabombomb  |   Posted on Feb 13th, 2010 0

    This is so amazing. Great track.
    The folks at Pitchfork must feel like a bunch of tools.

  34. zeebo  |   Posted on Feb 13th, 2010 0

    Okay, if MMJ helped them get recognized early on, then I can understand Jim James singing on a track, my bad, I did not realize that—and especially if it is only 1 track and only during the chorus, I can live with that. But to say Jim James has a great voice is quite a stretch. Not a terrible voice, but I wouldn’t consider his vocals to be great—if they were, he would not use reverb for every song. Sorry, I am venting, but the MMJ lovefest just gets under my skin. I don’t mean to offend anyone, and to each their own anyway.

    Back to the subject at hand, I cannot wait for this album to come out. Fate is one of my favorite albums to come out in the 2000s, and I look forward to many more great albums and shows from this band!

  35. j s arrrrrtttt  |   Posted on Feb 14th, 2010 0

    flaming lips – she don’t use jelly

    all i gotta say

  36. zeebo  |   Posted on Feb 14th, 2010 0

    j.s., I see the comparison, but only right at the very beginning of the song……..after that, it’s all Dr. Dog!

  37. iheartFitchPork  |   Posted on Feb 18th, 2010 0

    totally unexpected and completely awesome, Shadow People assuages my fear that dr. dog was going to sound lame once they signed to a major. I can’t wait to hear the rest of the album!!

    and um.. i love bad romance for what it is, a pop single that will be cool for a while and then get obnoxious. isn’t lady gaga just recycling the madonna sctick? how do you compare lady gaga to dr. dog?

  38. NoNeArEtHeSaMe  |   Posted on Feb 20th, 2010 0

    I love it!!!!!! :D I have listened to this pretty much everyday since it was posted! lol :) Was a little sad that they didnt sing this when I went and saw them Feb 12 but it was a fantastically awesome show none-the-less!!!!!!!! :D Hell I drove 3 hours to see them!!! So worth it! :)

  39. love it!! and the fact that they’re from Philly doesn’t hurt either, seeing as that’s my hometown as well. =]

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