Show – 9PM
For over 15 years, The Dodos have been careening, almost recklessly, towards some perfect ideal of how The Dodos should sound. First formed with the intention of creating a record that felt and sounded how the inside of a guitar might, the band have spent the intervening years sprinting towards that platonic ideal. The propulsion of that chase has always been palpable, even in the duo’s strangest, quietest moments — a gasping thrill conjured as if metallurgically from the interplay between virtuosically fingerpicked guitar and bracingly intricate drumming.
Now, after so long, finally: Grizzly Peak. The eighth album by Meric Long and Logan Kroeber still plays as if in freefall, but things are different this time. Meditative and sometimes painful in its emotional excavation, over the course of ten anthemic, gorgeously-rendered tracks, Grizzly Peak reveals itself as that place Long and Kroeber were always desperately trying to find.
As he was toying with the beginnings of what would become Grizzly Peak, Long began to feel the early twinges of arthritis in his fingers. Anyone familiar with Long’s style — an aggressive, rhythmic, weighted approach to fingerpicking developed and perfected over the past 15 years — will understand that this is akin to a runner feeling their legs wear down beyond repair, or the lungs of a brass player beginning to atrophy: an unfair, natural decay that bears immense, life-changing weight. “Guitar has always been my ticket out from feeling worthless, insecure — perhaps I never quite grew out of that moment in my adolescence where I discovered playing the guitar made me feel better than what my mind or others told me,” Long says. “It also became such a huge part of identity, that I probably latched on to it a little too much, and I guess feeling the beginnings of arthritis was sort of a sign of the impermanence of that identity. If I can’t play the guitar anymore — the way that, at least in my own mind, defined me so much — then what else am I?”