The Dodos + Alberta Cross | Mercury Lounge | 01.28.2008

Dodos"More with less." That’s one of the themes of the current, final season of The Wire. In that world, it’s all about downsizing and budget cuts. But with The Dodos, "more with less" is a good thing. The San Francisco duo pretty much wowed the crowd at Mercury lounge.

The more comes from singer-guitarist Meric Long, who used two microphones, a looping pedal, and a heavy wash of reverb to do the work of two, possibly three rocking people. The less came from mustachioed drummer Logan Kroeber whose minimal kit didn’t include a kickdrum or hi-hat, though he did have a tambourine duct-taped to his left foot. He more than made the most of, though, and together the Dodos made an awesome ruckus.

What is it about duos that make them work so much harder than bands with more members? From House of Freaks and Chickasaw Mud Puppies through the White Stripes, Viva Voce, Mates of State… there’s a long history of the power of two. Nine songs, about half of which are on their upcoming second album, Visiter, also equally divided between prettier Magnetic Fields-ish pop (Long sounds a lot like frequent Mag Fields contributor John Woo) and stomping — literally stomping — blues rock. Listening to the album, I wasn’t expecting them to be so loud. Or even so good. Horrible name, though.

MP3: The Dodos – Fools

Golly, it was Blog Central at Mercury Lounge last night and I spied Brooklyn Vegan, Matt Music Slut, Abbey from Punk Photo (she got some nice video) and Jerry Yeti though there were probably more than that.

They’re playing again in New York on Saturday at Union Pool (not Hall) with Phosphorescent — and insanely good double-bill that I wouldn’t miss if I didn’t already have tickets to Hot Chip at Highline. And the Dodos will be touring now pretty much though April. Catch ’em if you can:

Feb 2     Union Pool/Brooklyn NY    
Feb 15     The Blank Club/San Jose, CA    
Feb 28     Cafe Du Nord/Noise Pop
Mar 8     The Smell/Los Angeles
Mar 9     Bar Pink Elephant/San Diego
Mar 11     The Line Bar/Juarez, Mexico
Mar 12     French Kiss Showcase @ The Mowhawk/Austin, TX    
Mar 13     American Songwriter Day Party @ Tap Room/Austin, TX
Mar 14     Leafy Green Showcase     Austin
Mar 14     Hot Freaks Day Party @ The Mohawk/Austin, TX    
Mar 15     SFXSXSW Day Party/Austin, TX Austin
Mar 19     Lola’s/Ft. Worth, TX      Ft. Worth
Mar 22     Ballroom/Marfa, TX      Marfa
Mar 23     Mink/Houston, TX      Houston
Mar 24     Baton Rouge TBA     Baton Rouge
Mar 25     The Bottletree/Birmingham, AL      
Mar 26     Atlanta TBA     Atlanta
Mar 27     Harvest Records/Asheville, NC    
Mar 28     Bull City Headquarters/Durham, NC    
Mar 29     Tea Bazaar/Charlottesville, VA      
Mar 30     DC 9/Washington D.C.     Washington D.C.
Mar 31     Johnny Brenda’s/Philadelphia, PA    
Apr 2     Cafe 9/New Haven, CT     New Haven
Apr 3     Terrace Room @ Princeton/Princeton, NJ    

AlbertacrossLondon via Sweden band (or is it the other way around) Alberta Cross played a stripped down acoustic set before the Dodos and while I like their album and enjoyed them as a rock band during CMJ, this unplugged approach did nothing for me. I spent most of the time admiring their expertly tailored jackets, though I would think it would be hard to play your instruments in such tight-fitting clothes. Not that I’ve ever tried.

They’re playing a full electric set on Monday at Bowery which might be worth checking out.

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