The Dodos (Treasure Island Music Festival, 2008)

by Mehgan Logue

The Dodos being interviewed by SomaFM

Listen to the interview:

Meghan: This is Meghan with the Dodos at the Treasure Island festival. It's Sunday and it's a beautiful sunny day outside. How are you guys doing today?

Dodos: Soma FM! [laughter]

Meghan: Holler! Can I get you guys to introduce yourselves and let me know what you play?

Meric: I'm Meric I play guitar in the Dodos.

Logan: I'm Logan and I play the drums. In the Dodos.

Joe: I'm Joe. I play vibraphone and percussion. In the Dodos.

Meghan: This is a question specifically for Meric. You started originally recording solo as the Dodos. Or as Dodos.

Meric: As my name.

Meghan: Oh as Meric? Why did you guys choose the Dodos as your name?

Meric: Um, well, when I was little, my mom used to, my mom's French for those of you who don't know, out there, and she used to tell me "Fait Dodo," which is a French expression which means, "Go take a nap," when you're bad. So she told me that, and here we are, taking naps for being bad.

Meghan: Because you've been bad. [laughter]

Joe: Very bad.

Meghan: Well, we hope to reform you soon.

Meric: Logan's been the worst today.

Meghan: What have you done?

Logan: I just have a bad attitude today. That's all it is.

Meghan: But it's so sunny and warm!

Logan: It's not that I'm not happy, I just have a bad attitude.

Meghan: It's rock star syndrome, right?

Logan: No, that ain't it either, 'cause I feel like a worm. But...[laughs] Yeah. Bad attitude.

Meric: He's upset that he's not married.

The Dodos being interviewed by SomaFM

Meghan: You're not married?

Logan: No, man.

Meghan: Are you looking to be soon? Should we let our listeners know?

Logan: Kind of.

Meric: You know when you go to a wedding...

Meghan: Tried match.com? [laughter]

Logan: I got a lady, but we're not married. And I just went to a very beautiful wedding so maybe I have wedding envy.

Meghan: Well, you could just buy a tux and pretend like it's your wedding, right?

Logan: That today's the wedding?

Meghan: Well, not today, but just in general.

Meric: Yeah. We're getting married to rock n' roll. [laughter]

Logan: Yeah, it's time to let my true feelings show.

Meghan: Married to your music.

Logan: Not just my music, everybody's music.

Meghan: Music in general. So you guys just released your sophomore album in March, right?

Meric: Yeah.

Meghan: So how was round two? Round one sounded really good for you guys. Tell me a little bit about how things were different.

Meric: Well, there were a lot more, how do you say, more bakers in the kitchen for round two. That's a little metaphor for you, I dunno, we'd been fighting in the ring a lot longer. We knew what we were doing. We came out to really do our best. It's like Rocky I versus Rocky IV.

Meghan: Do you think Rocky IV is better?

Meric: No, but Rocky IV, Stallone, his buddy gets his ass kicked, dies actually, and then he comes back and he's kind of old and he needs to like, go to Russia. And that's what we did, we went to Russia and we worked out and got to where we needed to be and came back and...

Meghan: Ate some raw eggs, maybe.

Meric: ...We won, we totally fuckin' won! I'm sorry, we didn't win anything.

Meghan: That's a significant victory for the Dodos, right?

Meric: Sure.

The Dodos being interviewed by SomaFM

Meghan: So Joe, you're pretty new, right?

Joe: I'm the new guy.

Meghan: Not to call you out.

Logan: Harsh, bro!

Meghan: What made you guys decide to bring Joe on? Is he just a really friendly guy?

Logan: We lost a bet. [laughter] Sorry, I have a bad attitude to day. I love Joe. I love Joe.

Meghan: Joe, do you love Logan?

Joe: Oh, usually. I like today's attitude. He's getting a little sassy.

Meghan: While we're on that vein, Meric, why did you decide to expand, branch out?

Meric: I have no idea.

Meghan: Are you regretting that decision now?

Meric: Uh...

Joe: Too late now.

Meric: I'm all about expansion. That's really what I'm about. No, not really. It was always the idea I wanted a band but nobody was dumb enough to want to play with me.

Meghan: So you found a couple of suckers and now it's going strong?

Meric: Yeah! Pretty much.

Logan: I saw this dollar bill blowing down the street but it was Meric with a fishing line and it just went into his apartment and he was like "Hey, man!"

Meric: It was the poo dollar.

Logan: That was the first time I heard that. That was a poo dollar? You never told me that.

Meric: That's why you went for it. I knew that I could only get somebody who would pick up a dollar with poo on it. Sorry, this is getting....

Meghan: He's already in a bad mood!

Meric: Yeah, let's talk about this more.

Meghan: Or we could move on.

Meric: Yeah, expansion, let's move.

Meghan: Okay, so you guys have a lot of touring coming up in the next couple of months.

Meric: Oh yeah.

Meghan: Are you still excited about touring or are you over it?

Meric: No, it sucks, man. No, well, there are elements that I'm very excited about. It's very nice to be home, have a little bit of a break. It's been pretty insane, the schedule, so...and we were touring England, and touring England's always kind of hard. Nothing against England, for you English listeners, but...

Meghan: Is it because of the weather?

Meric: Uh, well, the weather's just a piece of the puzzle. There's a lot of things that... I think we just have a thing with England that's just not our spot, like we're just kind of fish out of water and we don't operate well. I need the sun.

Meghan: Replenish your vitamin D stores. That's important.

Meric: Yeah, that kind of sounds spoiled, but it's more than that. It's just that England's kind of hard on this band, usually, so we just got done with that tour and we're like, 'we're home, let's chill out, eat burritos, relax.' And we're going to go to Australia, we're going to go back to Europe. It's going to be awesome.

Meghan: A lot on the bill.

Meric: But that part of it's amazing. We're going to see places we've never been to and meet people we've never met. And expand.

Meghan: Do you guys prefer playing in the city or do you like going to new and different places? And if so, what's your favorite venue?

Joe: Generally?

Logan: Like a major city as opposed a smaller town? Be it in America or in Europe?

Meghan: When I say 'the city' I mean San Francisco. Sorry, I should be more clear about that.

Joe: Ah, gotcha. So the city versus everywhere else.

Meghan: This seven by seven mile square versus everything else out there in the world.

Joe: The seven by seven square is pretty good. The home town thing is pretty awesome, but nothing beats expansion [laughter].

Meric: That's a club, Joe.

Meghan: Oh yeah, the Expansion, right? Sounds awfully familiar.

Meric: Yeah. That's like a dirty club. Like a sex club.

Meghan: I've never been there. Have you?

Meric: I have. I love it.

Meghan: So Meric doesn't want to get married.

Meric: I do, actually. I went to a wedding last night. I was like, fuck man, everyone's gettin' married and I'm doing this shit?

Logan: Let's put out the call.

Meric: Who wants to get married. And then divorced.

Logan: The circle of life and death. [laughter]

Meric: No, fuck marriage. It's retarded.

Meghan: That's a pretty strong view, don't you think?

Meric: Well, I dunno, I think it is kind of retarded. I'm not against monogamy at all. Just the institution. Except when it's fun and great and all those married people...what were we gonna...expansion...oh yeah! Montana! Montana is one of the best places to play. That's our country.

Meghan: Why is that?

Meric: It's beautiful. The people are nice. They're not jaded and they never get live music from California so when they hear a band like us they think we're actually like original and creative?

Meghan: You don't think that you are original or creative?

Meric: Hell no.

Logan: Pretty soon we're gonna play all those places in the states and we're going to have to play Papua, New Guinea. And people are gonna be like: "Wow! This new music!" We'll be like: "Yep. Totally awesome and new." We're gonna have to start digging deeper for people who've never heard anything good.

Meghan: Well, you'll have to expand, right?

Logan: Right. That's the moral of the story.

Meric: At this point it's more like: "Run away!" We're not really expanding. We're like a virus, we've totally ruined our host. We have to move to a new area and infect that innocent population.

Logan: Don't get too close!

Meghan: Next host is Australia. Australia look out for the Dodos! They're dangerous people.

Logan: We'll be like those frogs that got introduced and took over Australia.

Meric: Or like the algae that's growing all crazy under the water.

Joe: Yes!

Meric: Fire algae, dude.

Meghan: Wow. I wasn't aware of the algae. Sounds like a bummer.

Logan: No. It's bad. It's horrible. Fisherman pulling up their nets and get it on their hands and end up going to the hospital because it's just like burns their...yeah, it's horrible. And it grows really easily in water and it just takes over shit. Like an algae bloom. You know, pssssssh! Expansion!

Meghan: They're also looking to expand. Can you guys tell me a little bit about "Visiter?"

Joe: What do you want to know?

The Dodos being interviewed by SomaFM

Meghan: Is there anything particular you'd like to say about it? What's it about? Does it have a theme?

Logan: Buy it! [laughter] Buy our new record! 2008!

Meghan: Where can people buy it?

Logan: Dodosmusic dot com. Safeway. Albertson's. Whatever.

Meric: Go to your nearest Warehouse and pick up the latest records, Dodos 2008, Visiter, spelled with an e.

Logan: BMI record club. Through the mail. Old school.

Meghan: For a penny?

Logan: Yeah. Or a couple if you got another.

Meghan: Are the songs a collection of songs with similar themes or is it kind of all over the place?

Meric: Um...they're all over the place. Yeah. I dunno. Have a listen, find out.

Meghan: Okay. Tell our listeners. You'll be infected.

Meric: Buy a couple. Give 'em away.

Logan: Everybody needs coasters.

Meghan: Okay. Well let me ask about one particular track. Can you tell me about the single "Fools?" What is "Fools" about?

Meric: "Fools" is about, uh...[laughs]. Well, that's it right there.

Meghan: Alright.

Meric: I don't know what it's about, actually. It's just a piece of crap that we put together.

Meghan: Don't you do most of the writing, Meric?

Meric: Yeah, but you know, it's like, I don't know what I'm writing about. I'm just, like, taking a dump. Seriously.

Logan: That's what we call a 'metaphor.'

Meghan: You're full of them.

Joe: That's why he's such a good song writer.

Meghan: Exactly.

Meric: "Write now, think later." That's my motto. My other one.

Meghan: So you guys get a lot of support from SF music blogs like the Bay Bridged and things like that. What do you think about that, for starters, and how do you feel it's contributed to your success? Is that a really big, terrifying question?

Logan: No, I appreciate and love those guys. We recently did a show where they were promoting it as well. They sort of popped up and started doing a really awesome, well organized thing and it's really cool to see a lot of my friend's bands and smaller bands pop up in there with the same face time as other, larger bands and I like their website. It's a good thing and it's awesome that they've chosen to...

Meghan: Have you ever discovered new bands on the Bay Bridged, ever?

Logan: Kind of. I usually only click on stuff I've heard about or I know a friend is in or...

Meghan: Stuff that you're in.

Logan: Well, yeah, I love hearing myself talk, obviously.

Meghan: Well, we can get you a copy of this.

Logan: Yeah, please. Make ten.

Meghan: Well, a little bird told me I should ask you guys about your relationship with the Akron family? Do you want to talk about it?

Meric: Yeah.

Logan: For sure.

Meghan: What would you like to say about it?

Meric: About our relationship with them?

Meghan: Yes. How do you know them, first of all, and who are they?

Meric: We met them, we opened up a show two years ago and then when they came back, just from opening up for them. Then we did a tour with them on the West coast and they were doing another tour on the West coast and one of their members had left and they were looking for friends to fill in and do different....

Meghan: So do you guys work together?

Meric: Yeah, we did this crazy thing where we went and played Coachella with them, which was kind of insane.

Meghan: What year?

Meric: Last year.

Meghan: '08?

Meric: It was supposed to be two days, but it was more like one day to rehearse. I was playing electric guitar, which I haven't played since high school. Seth, who's like a crazy ripping solo guitarist was teaching me all these parts and I almost started crying from trying to absorb all this music.

Meghan: But did the set go okay?

Meric: The set was great. It was a lot of fun. We pulled it off and we did a bunch more shows with them and it was great to get out of our little shell and play on some other people's stuff, learn how other bands work, and it was like a super educational, inspiring experience. It was crazy in terms of those guys. I'd like to say 'what up,' and Dana, I'm sorry for what I did, and Miles...."

Meghan: That's kind of cryptic.

Logan: I'd like to say that recently I read an interview with them on Pitchfork where they talked about our little stint with them and it's been very satisfying because at the time it was like, we just had to get it together and play these shows. Nobody really talked about how it was crazy, except me and Meric when we were alone. It was nice to hear them be like 'Yeah, we had the Dodos come and we practiced for five hours and it was probably pretty stressful for those guys.' It was nice to hear them admit that because it was such a crazy time.

Meghan: They realized what it was like for you.

Logan: But we were all in it together.

Meghan: A team effort.

Logan: For sure.

The Dodos being interviewed by SomaFM

Learn more about the Dodos at dodosmusic.net.

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