Dr. Dog's seventh studio album doesn't exactly reinvent the wheel. To be fair though, Dr. Dog has never really reinvented it at all, wearing their 60's influences quite well throughout their career. Be the Void does find Dr. Dog with a new sense of purpose, mixing their accessible melodies with a little bit of a rougher edged sound and mix. As in previous releases back and forth lead vocals of Toby Leaman and Scott McMicken are consistent throughout this LP. I prefer McMicken's vocals, their especially good in "That Old Black Hole," but Leaman really shreds it in "Vampire." This change in lead may lead to a lack of album flow in lesser bands, but all the songs are full of catchy hooks and great harmonies, it really works for them.

There are some pretty cool sounds throughout the record, and Dr. Dog try to keep it interesting for the listener. The standout track for me, "How Long Must I Wait" has a kettle drum type guitar lead, and the singers share vocal duties. The chanting singalong chorus of "Run Away" injects a little 'indie' into the song. The saloon piano keeps the fantastic "Do the Trick" from losing steam. This album supposedly captures their live performance's intensity better than any previous record. I've never seen them live, so I wouldn't know, and they even played LouFest this year. Shame, shame for sure. They do play loose, but sound very cohesive which helps sell the songs that have a few 'mistakes' in them, and gives it a live recorded sound.

Dr. Dog does borrow heavily from the sixties artists, the lyrics of "Warrior Man" could have easily been written by Ray Davies. But also swim in the same waters as some of their contemporary jam bands, like the tongue in cheek "Big Girl" which sounds like a Black Crowes outtake. Then, they mash vintage and modern all together for a solid closer in "Turn of the Century."

I can't say that I was ever a big fan of Dr. Dog, but if Be the Void is any indication of where the band is headed, I probably am now.