CD REVIEW: Dog Society - Emerge
By: Cyrus Rhodes
Blues/Rock, Alternative Rock
Formed in New York 4 piece band Dog Society just released their latest CD entitled Emerge in 2012. Band members includeBruce Erik Brauer (guitar), Guerzon (Bass) and Joe Ranieri (Drums + Percussion). Dog Society found the ultimate mouth-piece in Colorado based vocalist Brian Schnaak.
The CD kicks gets off the ground nicely with “Being Here” a smooth flowing intro piece that serves up slamming rock groove against walking bass lines, effective harmonies and soulful melody from Schnaak and company. Track 2 “A Good Friend” keeps thing moving in the right direction with heartfelt vocal delivery from Schnaak with steady flowing acoustic guitar rhythm and hooky chorus making for an impressive follow up piece. Track 3 “The Fuse Before” is another impressive groove that dishes out full tilt rock rhythm and thought provoking lyrical content that flows and ebbs it’s way through to emotional fruition. The CD makes a great first impression dashing out 3 amazing songs in a row. The musicianship of everyone involved is above the bar. I would classify this music as classic R&B, Americana, with brief touches of psychedelic Rock of the early 70’s. Music is reminiscent of classic Led Zeppelin, Cream with brief splashes of The Black Crows and even Yes to The Rolling Stones. Along the way besides the four piece standard you will notice lush instrumentation with things like impressive solo guitar, well placed percussion, and lush harmonies layered everywhere. What I like the most about this band is how well they seem to groove together, testament to hundreds of hours of writing and rehearsal time no doubt. Now turning our attention over to singer Schnaak - as for his vocal abilities well – he’s amazing! His voice goes down smooth & fills the space peacefully and unobtrusively with a timber that is simply infectious. I suspect some of his vocal influences are – Robert Plant (Led Zeppelin) Chris Robinson (Black Crows) and even John Rzenik (Goo Goo Dolls). I might add he takes some impressive vocal risks indicating to me a confident vocal ability. All songs are extremely well crafted and consistent across the board. This CD from Dog Society delivers 12 solid tracks all providing musical enjoyment filled with strong musical variety and diversity. The music of Dog Society has everything you would expect from a rocking musical production. From psychedelic “Scraped” and Pink Sun” to upbeat “Suffer Smile” to melodic “Spoken Word” to trippy “Space Boots” this CD has something for just about everyone. The CD ends with Track 13 “Salt” the perfect finale statement for a CD like this.
All songs over 3.5 minutes tend to drag you to the finish line. CD tends to sound a tad bit dated reminiscent of productions released in the late 90’s. I would advise Dog Society slightly modernize their overall sound a bit. I fully realize this is a subjective art form but some of the aforementioned does effect the bands overall marketability.
From start to finish “Emerge” is an amazing collection of music from Dog Society. The songwriting – world class, all consistent musical experiences, each one possessing a unique personality, flair and signature groove. Note for note, song for song there isn’t really weak piece on this fully loaded catalog. The writing and playing abilities of this 4 piece and is rock solid. The melodies and harmonies are well crafted and the lyrical content is packed