Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Dø @ The Bootleg Theater

Olivia Merilahti of The Dø performs at The Bootleg TheaterIt’s hard to pin down the music of The Dø. A Finnish band making waves across the pond, they stormed our beaches like a thief in the night. Like a record playing in reverse, there’s an uneasiness yet pleasing sound to their music. Wailing guitars in despair, methodical drum beats, dirty pop arrangements laced with Olivia Merilahti Bjork-esque sharp vocals. The Dø is everything in between, balancing between pop, rock and sometimes bordering rap and folk-rock. Mix all these ingredients together and you get The Dø. Their first English album, aptly titled, "A Mouthful" pulls from all genres of music. They were the first French act to score a #1 record in France with an album sung in English.

And last week, they ended their North American tour at The Bootleg Theater, a venue on the outskirts of downtown Los Angeles, away from the bright lights of Hollywood or Sunset Blvd. You knew the neighborhood was pretty rough when the bouncer of the venue asked us not to linger outside too long, rather to take it inside to the back patio. You wouldn't know from the outer appearance but the inside told a different story. People shoulder to shoulder, nearly filled to capacity awaiting The Dø's final U.S. show. The show, this particular night was paced perfectly, their trance-inducing sounds, especially "On My Shoulders" turned the crowd into hypnotics with mesmerizing beats and barbed guitars cutting through the air. And with Dan Levy's guitar landscaping the melody in "The Bridge Is Broken," Olivia's edgy vocals are free to envelope the crowd. By the end of their set, they didn't disapoint, leaving fans wanting more after leading the crowd singalong to "Stay Just a Little Bit More."

Although The Dø didn’t cause waves stateside, it was clear they did manage to cause ripples that will, no doubt, leave a lasting effect here in the US.