BY LEE ZIMMERMAN
The Dodos have never been an easy band to categorize, and yet it’s likely they prefer it that way. As with certain forebears – Steely Dan comes to most immediately to mind – they generally opt for the unusual, foregoing likelier pop mores in the process. It wouldn’t be entirely accurate to call them “prog” per se, but the overall intelligence and indulgence in their music – and the imaginative arrangements that accompany it — attests to their elevated mindset.
After joining forces in 2005, the core of the Dodos – vocalist/guitarist Meric Long and drummer Logan Kroeber – went on to release five full-length albums and a handful of singles and EPs, but they’ve yet to produce the vehicle that will deliver the audience eluding them so far. In fact, it’s unlikely that Carrier will be the offering that brings that promise home. Yet it is a superb showcase for the pair’s ample prowess, and on songs such as “Transformer,” “Confidence,” “Family” and “The Ocean,” the swirling set-ups, tangled tempos and consistent shifts in sound will more than likely find favor with anyone weary of today’s usual radio-ripened melodies. Suffice it to say there’s nothing here of the hum-along variety, although the contemplative tones of “Death” and lush accompaniment given “Stranger” ought to sway any listener who’s otherwise adverse to these challenging tomes.
DOWNLOAD: “Death,” “Stranger” “Transformer”