Dogleg come ripping out of the gate with the emotional banger “Fox.”
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Stream: “Fox” – Dogleg
On “Fox,” the first single from their debut album, Dogleg devastate listeners with a heart wrenching take on losing touch, with a song that’s thrives on leaving blood on the page. The band, who are expected to release their debut album next Spring, take a power pop approach and then distort the hell out of it. While the feelings of loss and confusion could resonate with anyone, few artists could deliver a song on the subject with as much energy as Dogleg.
Along with the high energy video, “Fox” rips with an epic level of engagement that most modern pop-punk lacks. The song puts an emphasis on intensity, but it also has the dynamics of an early Taking Back Sunday song or a Nimrod-era Green Day track. While so much of the enjoyment comes from the screamed gang vocals and fast, punchy riffs, the song is set in the soft bass breakdowns, where you’re reminded that you’re listening to a song with more emotional resonance than just your standard emo track. While this is clear to anyone who heard Dogleg’s Remember Alderaan EP, “Fox” takes the interesting parts of that release and smoothes out the creases.
Alongside the great build and release of the band, lead vocalist and guitarist Alex Stoitsiadis has a range that leaves other singers to shame. The way he both builds from a hushed, sweet voice to a raspy yelp and the quick transitions between the two are what give the song an emotional backbone. He has moments that resemble early punk vocalists like Johnny Ramone, somewhere he sounds like he could be in Hawthorne Heights, and others where he sounds like his contemporary Kory Gregory from Prince Daddy & The Hyena, and this is all in one song.
As his voice walks you through the range of emotions that come with losing touch with someone, the most devastating moment comes as Stoitsiadis repeats the breakdown:
Any moment now, I will disintegrate
You’ll make your move and I will fade out
As he repeats this, he goes from a soft and sad voice to shrieking to a point where it sounds like he’s trying to not let his memory get washed away. While we all are always changing, it’s hard to notice that someone you’ve known has changed. One of the most devastating lines is “You’re making an offering to a god you don’t believe,” because you can hear the sentiment of “What the hell are you doing?” in it, with a resigned acceptance that this is just the way that things have played out.
What makes Dogleg’s latest single so unique is how complex it is, while seeming incredibly simple. They reach levels of emotional depth that few bands can deliver with this much energy, and it’s done without any sort of goofy wink and nod. They’re just a band making thoughtful, great and catchy rock music. “Fox” is a great introduction to what will surely be an excellent full-length.
Stream: “Fox” – Dogleg
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