Dog Society’s Back and Better Than Ever Before

Written by on October 23, 2013 in Gigs / Tours / Events, Interviews, Music and DVD Reviews, News To Shout About!, October 24, 2013 - Comments Off on Dog Society’s Back and Better Than Ever Before

Dog Society

New York City’s pop rock n’ rollers Dog Society have returned after a long hiatus keeping them away. Now that they are back in the spotlight they have written and recorded all new material off their latest album “Emerge” and single “Salt”. The whole band got together to discuss their return and the all new music that they have been working so hard on.

All Access magazine, AAM:. Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Dog Society, and how long the band has been together.

Band: Bruce Erik Brauer, Guitarist / Richie Guerzon, Bass, Brian Schnaak, Vocals +Guitar, Joe Ranieri, Drums + Percussion. Dog Society has officially been together 20 years and we are headquartered in New York City.

AAM. Can I get a backstory on the band/ band biography?

Bruce: I met our Richie in College. I first saw him running through campus with a huge Bass Guitar case under his arm. I asked to see the guitar. A friend told Richie about this drummer we should check out and the two of us went to the club to see Joe play and were blown away. The last puzzle piece was getting a front man / singer / songwriter. We were lucky to find Brian through a professional Musician referral service. I remember my wife listening to his audition samples, she turned to me and said, “He is the one!” We flew him out to NYC from Colorado after a few phone interviews and the four of us clicked. It was a perfect fit. I promised Brian that we would be signed within a year.* We rehearsed 4 nights a week in a private studio in Queens. We recorded demos of our songs at a studio in Brooklyn. The owner liked our material and hooked us up with management and they connected us with the Showcase at Montana Studios Studio A for the executives at Atlantic records. *From meeting Brian to getting signed was a one year venture. We signed contracts and received actual checks to buy our music equipment and tour gear. We were like children in a candy store. Then the US tour began playing places ranging in all shapes and sizes from CBGBs to large arenas and the Shrine Auditorium in LA.

AAM. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

Bruce: We originated and stayed in New York City. 3 of the 4 of us are Queens boys. Brian was a Gypsy. It’s New York City. There are a million fuckin’ bands here of all shapes and sizes. Island Twins + American Darlings from Brooklyn and Queens NYC.

AAM. How did you guys come up with your band name?

Rich: We wanted a name that represented what we were trying to create with our sound. Dog Society seemed to fit perfectly. It was inspired by the plains tribes of the Cheyennes. Few in number, they overcame or held in check most of the peoples who opposed them, and when the westward movement of European civilization began, they made more trouble than all the rest combined. Each society had its own songs and secret ritual, and exacted certain observances and standards of its members. Our music is a journey into the soul, our performance is a ritual for all of us.

AAM. What bands have influenced your band and its sound?

Brian: I grew up passionately listening to Rush and Zeppelin. Any album by those two bands was good to me. The Song Remains the Same was the first album that I ever purchased and I drove 100miles to get my copy of Exit Stage Left. Those bands, no doubt, left a lasting impression. I also, however, had Sex Pistols, the Police, Circle Jerks, and Al Di Meola albums in my collection. All of those things contributed to the personal taste and flavor that I have today. Brian drove uphill both ways to get that album : ) (Bruce)

AAM. Are you guys signed to a label or unsigned? Which way do you prefer your band to be? Do you hope to eventually get signed (again)?

Brian: We are not signed with any management, agent or industry label. We are truly independent but open to the fact that representation can help us with distribution. If we had the right fit with the right motives we would sign a deal.

AAM. What lyrical theme do you guys use in your music? What message do you want to send?

Brian: It varies with each members song, Personally the lyrical theme is anything that I feel compelled to write about. “Spoken Word” was a song about love and adoration, “Suffer a Smile” was a song written about being left to rot on Staten Island when first moving to NYC and “A Good Friend” was written in third person and expresses the fear of having 2 different worlds collide. The lyrical theme always changes with the moment

AAM. This is your first release since your debut came out 20 years ago – why such a long gap to release new material?

Bruce: I left the band due to personal reasons and years went by. I simply missed my friends and the collaboration we had. I made the initial phone call to Brian after a long while and we booked a studio in Manhattan. We all walked in and hugged each and Joey counted off 1 2 3 4….It was as though zero time passed. We were tighter and sounded great. The excitement and feel was still there after the long hiatus.

Rich: We had all been doing the mid life shuffle, starting families, making music on our own and with others. “Test Your Own Eyes” was a great experience for us all. We felt a little sided that the record did not get the attention we thought it deserved by our management or the label. I believe that was hidden inside all of us and left a hunger to prove ourselves. Deciding to do the follow up CD after so many years came naturally and easily. A few phone calls, laughs and drinks and here we are.

AAM Who produced Emerge and what was it like working with them?

Bruce: The band Co-produced Emerge with Rob Schnapf and Tom Rothrock. Four songs were recorded and mixed in New York and the remainder were recording in California. Working with Tom + Rob was a great experience. We learned alot in the process and they brought out the best in us.

AAM. Is there any story or concept behind the Emerge title?

Bruce: It was a song title Brian came up with. The song wasn’t mixed in time for the release and we loved the word for the CD title. It had a significant meaning to me…Emerging or returning back onto the music scene after a hibernation.

AAM. Who did the cover art for Emerge and how much input did you have on it?

Rich: We had 100% input. Our Guitarist Bruce had the idea of doing a “Dia de la Muerto” style skull for the cover art. Day of the Dead is a Mexican Holiday that focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died. Using a real Dog Skull with some symbolic imagery surrounding it kept it similar to our first CD cover “Test Your Own Eyes” designed by Hans Neleman. Bruce was responsible for the final creation which we all loved.

AAM. Select two songs from Emerge and what inspired the lyrics.

Bruce: I tend to like “Being Here”, because of its melody and positive message of not taking life for granted. (Rich) And I like Daymare. A Sci-Fi fantasy about feeling alone and wanted to get back home.

AAM. What should labels/zines/promoters know about your band? Why should they be interested in it?

Band: This is a second chance story. Atlantic records alumni makes good as independent band. This is the real deal. Good production, great songs

AAM. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

Bruce: Google Dog Society and most songs will pop up in your browser.

AAM. What can the fans expect to see from you in the future?

Bruce: We’ve been playing shows in the New York City Tri-State Area. We’re playing the legendary Beacon Theater in New York and recording new material for a third release yet unnamed. Follow us on Facebook and twitter @DogSocietyNY to find out more gossip!

AAM. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

Bruce: The lyrics, the beats, the melodies. Take in the assorted flavors of each song and savor them.

AAM. Any final words of wisdom?

Rich: If you are in it for money don’t bother LOL! If you love making music, be true to yourself and give it 200%.