The Dodos

The Dodos are landing in Denver.

The San Francisco band is creating an underground stir with its fusion of indie rock and West African drumbeats. It sounds like an unusual marriage of musical genres, but this group pulls it off and leaves fans begging for more.

Thursday night, the Dodos will show off their unique sounds at Denver’s Bluebird Theater.


Who: The Dodos, with The Ruby Suns

When: 8 p.m. Thursday

Where: Bluebird Theater, 3317 E. Colfax Ave., Denver

Cost: $13.50

The Dodos basically consist of guitarist Meric Long and drummer Logan Kroeber, but it’s amazing how many sounds come out of this indie-rock band.

“I started out in San Francisco working as a line chef,” Long said. “I worked as a chef for seven years — if I wasn’t a musician I’d be in the restaurant industry. I’m not necessarily good, but I like to light things on fire and I’m fast.

“I even love watching ‘Top Chef.’ I watch the show during the band breaks and it’s been really fun this season.”

Long was cooking up a storm, but he was also honing his musical skills. The performer worked on his acoustic guitar techniques, and learned how to finger pick and play percussive-style.

“I really wanted to take that sound and amplify it,” Long said. “I thought of each string as a drum and I tried to make the sound louder and more bombastic.

“I wanted to add interesting rhythms to the music. I liked the premise of African drumming and how the drums fill the spaces to create all these polyrhythms”

In 2005, Long was introduced to drummer Kroeber and the duo started developing the Dodos’ intricate sounds.

The band’s musical premise was so intriguing that the Dodos got booked on tours before the act’s first record came out.

Three CDs later, the Dodos are touring behind their 2009 release, Time to Die. The new disc shows off the band’s dynamic beats and melodic songs.

“Our sound developed because we played, jammed and improvised for a long time,” Long said. “We were finally happy with where we were, so we added Keaton Snyder on vibraphone.

“We now have this huge sonic range and we’re getting headlining tours. I think there’s a buzz about the band because we don’t fit into a category and we constantly tour.”

Long said the Dodos are gaining a solid reputation for their energetic live shows.

“There’s a lot of sweat, tears and blood at our shows,” Long said. “We try to be really passionate about what we play. When we tour, we’ll play six nights in a row.”

All the Dodos’ hard work is paying off.

The band had a song placed in a Miller Chill commercial, and the Dodos are moving up to larger concert halls.

“We’re probably going to have another record out next year,” Long said. “We’re also working on an orchestra project. We’re going to re-write our songs and have these orchestra students perform them live.

“We’re really excited to see what happens. It’s going to be really good.”

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