For a duo, San Francisco’s Meric Long and Logan Kroeber, aka The Dodos, can certainly make a lot of noise. It’s a special, softer kind of noise, however, and on their French Kiss debut Visiter, the band delivers a sprawling folk record. Quiet fingerpicking shares equal billing with thunderous drums to form unique, rolling waves of sound.
Long, the principle songwriter of the group, is as eloquent in lyric as he is in instrumental constructs, and the band’s sense of song structure keeps Visiter an interesting listen. Songs of six or seven minutes are followed by those barely skirting sixty seconds, resulting in a form that revolves more around the song’s feel than around conventional timing.
It’s a good bet that Visiter‘s content is best heard live, and an even better one that this duo will spend the better part of 2008 on tour to give listeners just that opportunity. In their absence, however, we are left with a rollicking redefinition of the phrase “folk duo” that does the trick all on its own.