Dr. Dog: Bowery Ballroom 17 January 2015

This ticket was purchased back in September. violaleeblue suggested the show – I’d never heard of the band but thought I’d take a chance. Turns out they’re pretty popular. They sold out four shows at Music Hall of Williamsburg and four shows at Bowery Ballroom. This was the last of their eight nights in NYC.

I’m still not feeling well, although I’m seeing a light at the end of this depression tunnel. Good friends and finally getting my meds back (lost them because of loss of health insurance and then my new health insurance company not getting the proper information to my pharmacy in over two weeks) are helping me on the road to recovery. But I managed to get myself out of the house to meet violaleeblue for dinner at the One Mile House next door to the Bowery Ballroom. We ran into Kenny while we were there and spent some time listening to his very funny stories. Once again Kenny came through and reserved a table for four of us – violaleeblue’s friend A and Mrs. Devereaux were joining us at the club. Later we found out that Mrs. Devereaux would not be coming and that was a disappointment but she was there in spirit.

Dinner was very good. One Mile House serves bar food but it’s good bar food. The place with packed with drinkers and diners but fortunately we did not have to wait long for a table.

Kenny had warned us about the tiki lights but I don’t think I was prepared for the entire set-up. There were lights strung over the floor, palm trees in the corners, a huge flamingo backdrop and lights that took up a lot of the stage. The opening act had barely the lip of the stage for their performance.



Field Mouse was the opener. Their bios only list four musicians – founders Rachel Browne (lead vocals/guitar) and Andrew Futral (lead guitar), Saysha (bass), and Tim (drums). Also on stage was Rachel’s sister on keyboards. Their Facebook page lists them as post-goth/melodic gentle-metal and Wikipedia lists them as dream pop. What I got from them was a sort of 80s/Breeders sound. Anyway, they were pleasant enough to listen to.


Dr. Dog is Toby Leaman (vocals/bass), Scott McMicken (vocals/lead guitar/piano), Frank McElroy (rhythm guitar/vocals), Zach Miller (piano/vocals/guitar), Eric Slick (drums), and Dimitri Manos (percussion, electronics, guitar). They are a lot of fun. All the guys were wearing saddle shoes and some were wearing sunglasses throughout the show.

Interesting postscript to the t-shirt etiquette conversation – many in the audience were wearing wool hats that said, “Dr. Dog” with a pom-pom on top. It was like Where’s Waldo? except there were more Waldos than not. So, yay or nay on wool hats with the band name on them?

Dr. Dog is like Vampire Weekend mashed with the Red Hot Chili Peppers and a little jam band and twee indie rock thrown in. They will remind you of The Flaming Lips. The band was dancing all over the stage and not really looking where they were going – several times I thought someone was going to be bashed with a guitar neck or head.

Some of the songs had abrupt endings and every time there would be roar from the crowd the likes of which I’d never heard before. It was louder than the band. When the band simply faded out there would be the usual clapping and “whoahs!”

Two standout songs for me were “Jackie Wants a Black Eye” and “Shadow People” both of which are less representative of the live band as a whole I think. These were ballads and most of what they played last night were higher energy and dance songs.

The audience knew every word to every song and threw their fists in the air and roared for the entire two hours that the band played.



By Carene Lydia Lopez