Dumbo Gets Mad
(Elephants At The Door )
Psychedelic rock, Experimental
Of Montreal, The Flaming Lips, Animal Collective
Duo turned foursome, Dumbo Gets Mad is a bit of an enigma. The band seems to be some sort of obscure side project of a side project. There is not much written about DGM and they seem to pop up randomly at European festivals. DGM's debut album is a diverse acid trip that ebbs and flows between beauty and grit. The diversity is tied in through the use of erotic saxophone work throughout. This album is full of 60's influence and cheese infested synth work that is well balanced.
The second track "Plumy Tales" features guitar pop accompanied by unique choruses providing a grand entrance to a very unique album. "Why Try" and "Harmony" are staples for the album providing some eerie undertones and subtle vocals. The lyrics are consistently odd and strangely entertaining. In "Sleeping Over" a fueled and funky baseline lead the way through more mysterious pop that provides for their definitive sound and bizarre ode to the chipmunks.
After several listens the bass tends to become a bit overwhelming, but with a unique touch with the introduction of stomping elephant sound effects. "You Make Me Feel" the last track provides a strong and vibrant ending featuring some sloppy aggressive sax work.
All in all we were impressed with Elephant at the Door, finding it an interesting psychedelic indie pop trip much akin to some of the gems put forth by the Flaming Lips. Unlike the Flaming Lips, however, DGM lacks confident vocals. Instead, Elephants at the Door falls somewhat flat as there is no real driving force behind the unique backdrop. The vocals are distant and unfortunately fall flat. Throughout the album we found ourselves yearning for some vocal punch or melody to provide direction. The mood and style circulate throughout the album never really taking full flight.
DGM, has delivered a diverse piece that flows very naturally yet lacks that oomph or punch to make it a work deserving of heavy rotation. Worth picking-up if you enjoy unique psychedelia, but ultimately this one may grow tiring as flails into never never land.
Standout Tracks: Plumy Tales, Why Try