Underground punk legends THE DOGS have unleashed a new digital single ‘Under The Coast’ that was co-written with and features fellow rock ‘n’ roller Frank Meyer (The Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs, James Williamson & The Pink Hearts) on guest vocals and guitar. The socially conscious, topical song is available now through Chicanery Chick Records/Die Laughing Records on all digital formats and deals with the chaos and dissonance of modern times.
“Frank and I go way back,” says THE DOGS front man Loren Molinare. “His band The Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs and THE DOGS have been in the trenches of the rock ‘n’ roll wars for years together, playing cutthroat gigs side by side. We had always talked about collaborating on a song one day. Then right at the beginning of the pandemic, Frank texted me and asked if I was recording at home at all. I told him just had a few riffs in my phone, but I’d send them over. Next thig I knew he took them into GarageBand and wrote a full realized song around all my parts! And it was a really strong song.”
“Loren sent me these killer riffs that had a punk thing going on but also had this power-pop meets surf rock twang to ’em,” adds Meyer, “and since society was just starting to fall apart with the pandemic and riots, I started writing about that. But I wanted the vibe to be kind of happy like ‘Hey, the world’s falling apart around us and the apocalypse is near, so let’s head to the beach and surf!’ Sort of a west coast punk rock take on Prince’s ‘1999’ in a way.”
So Molinare took the demo to THE DOGS — bassist Mary Kay and drummer Tony Matteucci – to work it up and all the trio gathered at Pawnshop Studios with producer Richard Duguay to cut the tracks, sending Meyer the mixes to record his vocals from his home studio since Southern California was on lockdown at the time.
Bassist Mary Kay says, “it’s a strange time and Loren and Frank did a great job of capturing the tension and hypocrisy in the air these days.”
“As soon as Loren mentioned doing a video, I had this idea of project images over the band members, sort of like a ’60s go-go dancing’ flick meets David Lynch-style art film. The images needed to move along fast and match the song too, so they needed to reference both the SoCal happy-sunny beach vibe plus the violent underbelly of modern city life and the politics that keep us all paranoid. So basically, it’s a sunshine apocalypse!”
Front man Loren said we booked a soundstage to shoot the video but then I tested positive for COVID-19 and went into a 14-day self-isolation. We asked Frank with his film directing background if there was a way to shoot the video under the COVID restrictions and he knocked it out of the park with his concept.
Formed in Lansing, Michigan in 1968, THE DOGS started as proto-punk band playing alongside The Stooges, MC5, and KISS before eventually moving to Los Angeles in 1976 and joining the ranks of the emerging west coast punk scene. The trio’s appeared on the Killed By Death compilation and the notorious “Slash Your Face” 7″ single cemented the band’s way-ahead-of-it’s-time status. After a breakup, the band reformed to release the 2000 Compilation Fed Up album Suburban Nightmare on Dionysus Records and have been going strong ever since.
Die Laughing Records will also issue ‘Under The Coast’ on vinyl later this year as the B-side to The Dogs’ previous digi-single ‘Welcome to the Revolution.’
Stream/buy Under The Coast HERE