Dory of Souls, the debut from Sea Dogs, rips and roars through eight tracks that thoroughly treads through a throng of inspirations.
Its versatility and musicianship should come as no surprise; the scurvy-riddled crew that chugs, beats, and wails through the savage shanties include St. John’s veterans Dale Drew (Lunge, Physical Graffiti), Dan Moore (Sheavy), Darren “Doc” Reid (Clay Mason), Jeff Devereaux (Electrikompany) and Karl Hawkins (Wizards of Kaos).
It’s also produced by the legendary Don Ellis, the man behind the board on countless St. John’s classic albums. It sounds exactly like what this formula should concoct; tight, raw, riffy, and really fucken heavy. Being seated within the royal lineages of bands like Sheavy and Wizards of Kaos may be daunting, but these hounds nobly take up the cause.
They have spent their years growing a strong scene of hard rock bands in St. John’s, amalgamating their disparate sounds with Sea Dogs. They’ve built a barge of an album that begs to be blasted at an obscene volume. An album that’s best basked in alongside a bottle of the kind of moonshine that could be easily mistaken for pure gasoline. It’s a big sound for big riffs.
While some of these riffs fall a little short of real ingenuity or innovation, there’s plenty that are bold enough to hold their own. Elsewhere they’re either backed by a solid rhythm section, or emblazoned with Drew’s dastardly deceiving range.
Able to switch on a dime from low growls to the highest howls, Drew breathes life into some of the more repetitive parts of the album. But there’s plenty of room for everyone to shine; “Same Old Story” shreds in the most old-school way possible, invoking both thrash metal and good ole rock n’ roll. “Wanted Man,” the captain of the vessel, reverberates the best of Alice in Chains, complete with a penchant for quaint verses and strong harmonies.
There’s the Kyuss-esque “On the Run.” Most blatantly, there’s a deep love of Sabbath that permeates every inch of the LP.
Do you like your music heavy? With ruthless riffs and wolfish cries? If you do (and you should), this album is the right brew for you. It seizes all the right pieces from the right influences and makes sure it can weather any storm. It’s a bounty of chaos. Dory of Souls ain’t no fool’s gold.