Dr. Dog/ Deer Tick: Terminal 5, New York, NY 5/15/10

Before jaunting across the pond, Dr. Dog brought their rambling road show to Terminal 5 in NYC, making it the largest venue they have yet to headline in this town, and by the packed house of chanting fans, bigger things may be in their near future. 

Rhode Island’s Deer Tick opened the show in full drag, which didn’t take away from their heartfelt rock based around singer John McCauley’s appealing voice.  Opening with the drum rolls of “Easy” from Born on Flag Day, Deer Tick got the crowd bopping and cheering from the start.  At times soulful (a killer saxophone fill made an appearance) and at times country twanged the group shined in their brief slot.  Their straight ahead rollicking cover of Chuck Berry’s “Maybelline” was an excellent homage and for a group wearing dresses and over doing the makeup, they obviously don’t need gimmicks, the tunes and playing speak for themselves.

Dr. Dog strolled onto the staged with neon ringed guitars and air of excitement.  Opening with “Stranger” from the Philly native’s new album Shame, Shame the crowd simply ate it up, chanting the group’s name post song.  “The Old Days” was banged out with power from the percussion crew (and extra 6th member joined the band to help out for the full set) and “Mirror, Mirror” exploded with a flashing build up.  A set highlight was the muscled up version of “The Rabbit, The Bat & The Reindeer” off of the excellent Fate, as were the huge crashes contained in the newer “Shadow People”. 

The groups live act is finely honed with perfectly timed lighting and an added rhythmic force that isn’t present on their warm studio releases.  Playing over 20 songs with a heavy focus on the groups newest two releases found the band clicking all over the stage, bouncing and strumming with joy.  Tonight’s encore saw a cover of Architecture in Helsinki’s “Heart It Races” and a successful marriage proposal by a fan.  Before closing with “My Friend” the group mentioned that “love was in the air”, it certainly was as Dr. Dog was deservedly loved tonight.

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