Dora Flood

We Live Now

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Dora Flood's latest album of psyched-out fuzz is, indeed, just that -- and there's no sin in doing it very well. Taking the tack that one can be massively heavy but can still find the pop in it all -- something that Josh Homme has long since demonstrated is an entirely feasible approach -- Dora Flood's own long career hasn't been as celebrated but deserves an ear; We Live Now is a good entry for the curious. (It also doesn't hurt that they know to call the first song on the album "Phoenix Rising," and that they make it sound like that, a slow epic rise of a song with a killer guitar solo that's pure skybound-from-the-desert majesty.) If Dora Flood have a reliable standby it's soothing but stoned harmonies mixed with exultant guitar, something that inevitably calls to mind everything from the Association and late-'60s Byrds to proto-metal like Steppenwolf. Classic tripping out is unsurprisingly in evidence, thus the blend of light falsetto and rising and falling keyboards on "Atlantis," spiked with a total guitar snarl on the chorus. Even the more straight-up pop moments aren't really that; a song like "Everywhere We Go" keeps things on a calmer and generally brisker tip (not quite motorik but not too far removed), but the layered arrangement, massed vocals, and spiraling, spindly solos and more make for a thick end result. No question that Dora Flood are out to revisit a past that never quite was rather than projecting where things might go next, but with this as a given, We Live Now is a pure treat, full stop.

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