Album Review: The Dodos – No Color

No Color By The Dodos

don’t memorize all of your locations
you are nowhere, you are nothing vacant

On “No Colors” the San Franciscan folkers return to their roots as a duo. A decision that serves the band well after the flop(pish),  “Time To Die”, which felt a little too glossy and forced throughout. On “No Color”, the band once again sounds ‘rustic’ and substantive. The end result of  the simple (minimal) ingredients seems far greater than the sum of it’s parts. Like a good soup that’s been allowed to have it’s flavors simmer and develop over time, “No Colors” really maximizes the effect of drums, jangly guitar and vocals.

While Meric Long’s singing is more than capable of carrying most songs, the thing that sets the Dodos apart from other folk rock outfits is, and always has been percussion. The frenetic, in your face drumming style really pounds it’s way to the forefront of every song on “No Color”. In tracks like “Black Night” and “Going Under” the drums serve as more than a dependable back bone of a song. The Dodos use drumming as well as any band I can think of to provide their songs with a jolt of raw energy and liveliness that sets them apart from most other folk pop type groups.

“Good” is one of those tracks where everything just strikes a really nice balance for the Dodos. Long’s voice/exuberance, his guitar and the electric elements all hold up to the whirlwind of drumming by Logan Koeber. Also there is a perfectly placed lull/gentle drum solo fit in at the 3:50 mark that gives you a chance to catch your breath.

While “No Color” doesn’t feature any major breakthroughs for The Dodos it does find them returning to what they do best. And as time has progressed I think that the duo now has a better grasp on just exactly what that is.

No Color: 4 out of 5

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