When the reunited that dog announced that founding member Petra Haden left the band, we didn’t have high hopes for their new album, Old LP. Although Anna Waronker has always fronted the group, part of the band’s charm was Haden’s violin playing and the sibling harmonies with triplet sister Rachel. They finished their new album several years ago; we feared it had been shelved. (Shortly after completion, Rachel said on Facebook that the album had a distinctly orchestral Pet Sounds vibe. This revelation only made the delay even more agonizing.)
We needn’t have worried, as Old LP is an impressive comeback. While they’ve replaced their youthful punk-rock angst with a more graceful, nuanced approach, it’s not hard to envision this as a natural progression from their previous album, 1997’s brilliant Retreat From The Sun. Instead of worries about boys and the stresses of young adulthood, Old LP captures what adulthood offers. Offering crunchy punk (“If You Just Didn’t Do It,” “Down Without A Fight”) next to drop-dead gorgeous orchestra pop (“Your Machine,” “Alone Again”), that dog. charms the listener as much now as they did then.
So welcome back, that dog. We’re glad you’re back.
Purchase that dog Old LP: Amazon / Bandcamp