Review by Andrew Patterson
Dog Day is a relatively unassuming band. So unassuming that I find myself wondering pessimistically if I even like them. Every time they release an album, I say to myself ‘Do I really need another Dog Day album?’. And then I look to my record shelf and I see that I own all of their records. So, whetted by the fond memories of albums past, I listen toFadeout, the band’s fourth album in a steady five-year run, and I am pleasantly reminded (fool that I am!) that I do need more Dog Day. In fact, I think everyone could use a little Dog Day here and there. Suddenly, I feel grateful that people like Seth Smith and Nancy Urich continue to make art that so effortlessly overcomes my hyper-critical listening habits.
Fadeout finds the husband and wife duo working in familiar territory, making evocative, moderate rock music: songs that sound deceptively simple because they are immaculately constructed, with much of the heavy machinery tucked inside. Moving seamlessly through classic-rock tropes, down into sullen, confessional songwriting, Dog Day have come to inspire the oxymoronic adage ‘always the same, always different’.
There is something beautiful about a band who understands itself well and continues to move gracefully through a career of their own accord, blissfully unaware of trends and industry. It’s the type of beauty that inspires ‘Favorite Band’ talk and, over time, results in a discography in which any given release may be argued best.
And so, having listened through Fadeout for the tenth time in as many days, I’m no longer wondering if I like Dog Day. Under the spell of the duo’s inspired writing and eerily detailed production, I’m starting to think that Fadeout may be the finest record in their quintessential catalogue.