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The San Francisco duo of Meric Long and Logan Kroeber have been keeping things steady over the past decade or so as The Dodos. In that timespan they’ve released an impressive six albums. At no point did I ever worry about the quality of the record, as the duo seem to always find a way to impress. Their most recent album Individ was just released last month via Polyvinyl Records, and it’s unsurprisingly another wonderful addition to their discography. This Friday night they brought their tour to Music Hall of Williamsburg, with their tour mates, Springtime Carnivore.

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As if seeing The Dodos wasn’t enough to get me excited about the show, getting to see Springtime Carnivore live made the prospect that much more exciting. Their debut album dropped rather quietly late last year, and it shamefully went overlooked by a lot of people. But make no mistake, it was one of the finest albums that 2014 had to offer. The group is the new project of Greta Morgan (previously of The Hush Sound and Gold Motel). They make sugary indie pop-rock in the same vein as Tennis, that will make you sway and feel all of the feels. Live they were tight and efficient, vividly bringing each of the albums memorable cuts to life. With only one album’s worth of material, the fun was over way too quickly. Here’s to hoping they come back to play soon.

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It was hard to believe that the last time I saw The Dodos was in 2008 for the Siren Music Festival (now known as 4Knots). Since then, they’ve released five albums, went through two live vibraphone players (Joe Haener + Keaton Snyder) and lost touring member Christopher Reimer (also of Women), who tragically passed away in 2012. This year they’ve returned with the rather energetic and exciting Individ, an album that finds The Dodos seemingly in a new place, revitalized.

Immediately upon hearing opening number “Goodbyes and Endings,” I was hit with a wave of familiarity, with feelings from that Siren show returning to me all at once. The deadly good Individ lead single “Competition” had everyone in the crowd bobbing their head to frantic riffage/drumming. It’s the sort of song that demonstrates The Dodos at the best. The fast paced strumming of Long, and the out of control percussion of Krober somehow find a way to click and become one wholesome powerful sound. In recent years they have incorporated electronic guitar to their sound, adding a more well-rounded nature to their live show, something I didn’t get to experience previously.The Dodos really are a band meant to experience in the live setting.

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For me, 2008’s Visiter is still their finest achievement, so it appeased me to hear them dig back and play tracks such as “The Season,” “Joe’s Waltz” and “Walking”/”Red & Purple” which were played back to back with an expert transition. There was disappointingly no “Fools” played, but getting to see Greta Morgan join the band for a show-closing performance of “Don’t Try and Hide It” was perfect (Neko Case sings on the original).

If I had one minor complaint, is that the show was over way too soon. The 13-song set was exciting, bold, and efficient, if not a little too brief hour runtime. Even so, I left being completely reminded of why I fell in love with this band so many years ago. This great performance was a rediscovery of that love. For anyone needing a reminder of why The Dodos remain one of the more underrated around, pick up a ticket to see them live.

Find photos and setlists for both The Dodos and Springtime Carnivore posted below. I’ve also included video for “Competition.”

The Dodos – “Competition” Music Video:

Springtime Carnivore Setlist:

1. Creature Feature
2. Keep Confessing
3. Two Scars
4. Last One To Know
5. Other Side of the Boundary
6. Sun Went Black
7. Collectors
8. Name On A Matchbook

The Dodos Setlist:

1. Goodbyes and Endings
2. Competition
3. The Season
4. Confidence
5. The Tide
6. Walking
7. Red & Purple
8. Black Night
9. The Current
10. Retriever
11. Pattern/Shadow

12. Joe’s Waltz
13. Don’t Try And Hide It

Springtime Carnivore:

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The Dodos:

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