On a frigid Friday night in March, Dopapod graced the stage in Syracuse, NY. Warming up the crowd at the Westcott Theater was The Manhattan Project, a killer synth and drums duo, who broke the ice incredibly with their creative vibe that falls somewhere between Dr. Fameus, Break Science, and an uptempo dub group. Next, Dopapod took the stage.
One amazing facet of any Dopapod show this reviewer has ever attended is the convergence of people from every part of the musical spectrum. There’s some metal heads, some jam band kids, some techno dancers, your everyday Dead heads, and more. Why is this? Dopapod’s appeal is about as wide as it can be. They have the uncanny ability to mix Metal and Jazz, Funk and Electronica, and so much more into almost every track. It’s never boring; there’s something in it for everyone. Especially now, since dropping their third studio album, Redivider, with the addition of vocals to their previously instrumental sound, Dopapod is pulling in bigger and more diverse crowds than ever.
Dopapod wasted no time kicking it off with a heavy metal riff, and in their ever so unique manner, dropped the beat directly into a heady instrumental jam, and rounded the verse off with a break down that sounded like The Strokes with Les Claypool singing.
Dopapod’s “Freight Train” (Live)
One thing that cannot go without mention is the impeccable musicianship of every member of this band, which was being easily communicated on this night in Syracuse. No one ever stood out over the others; there’s no ‘lead’ anything, it’s just four guys tearing it up: always. Their ability to stay on the beat was impeccible, the bass growled out a stack of Orange amps, the guitar work should have PRS asking for a sponsorship, and the keyboard work was incredible and diverse. Even when the music slowed down and began to feel like a trip to Wonderland, Dopapod’s cohesion never failed.
Some highlight tracks of the night include ‘Turnin’ Knobs,’ off their last release, Drawn Onward, ‘Bubble Brain,’ and ‘Trapper Keeper’ from Redivider, and not to mention their encore: Alanis Morissette’s 1995 classic featuring Dave Navarro and Flea of Red Hot Chili Peppers, ‘Oughta Know.’
Of course, ‘Turnin’ Knobs’ got everyone dancing, as it cannot fail to do. ‘Bubble Brain’ was a shreddy wonder, and ‘Trapper Keeper’ brought the rage out in us all. Of course, their cover of Morissette’s ‘Oughta Know’ took a second to recognize, and then the crowd erupted. Apparentally everyone in the crowd who still had a voice left remembered yelling those angst-ridden lyrics over the radio way back in the day. But on this night, there was no anger, no angst, just passion with a tongue in cheek attitude about the song, as if the band knew it would be fun, but also rock. It seemed somewhat reminiscent of The Disco Biscuits encoring with Men at Work’s ‘You Can Dance if You Want to.’ Not that the covers sound anything alike, rather they fit the bands’ style, are suitable throwback songs, and the crowds love it.
One thing is for absolute sure: Dopapod is incredible live. They put on a sincerely amazing show. There’s something for everyone in their music, and everyone comes out to hear it, and knock on wood, this band isn’t going anywhere except to the stars.
Written by Peter DeStefano
OurVinyl | Contributor