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The Dodos

At their recent concert at the Maroquinerie, through no fault of their own, quality was lost in a sound that lacked clarity. We were left with mixed feelings – far from the passion that they had managed to arouse in us two years ago, with their first concerts in Paris and the release of their album Visitor. This would soon be rectified.

The band give a lot of praise to their new member, Keaton. A tall Californian man, with a huge vibraphone. Clearly an essential addition in their eyes.

In a converted garage in Montreuil – a huge space with exposed beams, filled with books and art – we left the abundant furniture as it was, respecting the band’s wishes to keep things close and cosy. The drum kit was covered with a sheet to quieten it. Logan was amongst the public. Meric faced them.

Not even for a moment can one deny the pure energy that emanates from their concerts, and despite the location and lack of amplification, tonight was no exception. After a brief bit of chatting, they suddenly sprung into action.

It was especially nice to witness the workings of the mysterious vibraphone. The importance of the instrument in the musical arrangements was palpable, even before Meric joined Keaton for the beautiful introduction of Fools, which opens the film.

The concert was great. They played lots of their old songs – some well known, others lesser. We agonised a little over whether we would let them end the concert without an encore. But we needn’t have worried. Season progressed into something wonderful. Meric rose and began hitting the kit next to the vibraphone, before inviting myself and an audience member to join in. I’m not exactly sure what happened, but it lasted 16 minutes. A quarter of an hour of improvisation; improvisation that built up such incredible power that it left everyone buzzing with excitement.

Unfortunately we couldn’t possibly have fitted this epic improv into the final video. It would have meant sacrificing several other of their actual songs.

The Dodos gave an unforgettable performance that night. One that only further confirmed that we should definitely continue to follow this band. As should you.