American Dog-Poison Smile
It’s no secret that we at From Out of Nowhere love American Dog. They’ve provided our podcast theme music and opened their homes and shared their swill with us. When you have a personal relationship with the bands you cover, it’s tough to offer an objective review. Fortunately, with their latest release Poison Smile, American Dog has made it easy on us. Poison Smile is simply the best record the Columbus, Ohio based band’s best record yet.
Devil Dog kicks things off with a flash of drums and a killer riff from Steve Theado before the whiskey soaked and attitude to spare vocals of Michael Hannon kick in and makes it clear the band means business. There’s no letting up with Just Like Charlie Sheen, which will be the band’s first video from Poison Smile (directed by none other than the “Grand FOONbah” himself, Rob Kern). While Hannon sings you can’t teach an Old Dog New Tricks, he’s wrong about that claim. In the two and a half years since the release of their last album Mean, bass player/vocalist Hannon and guitarist Steve Theado added a new drummer, Michael “Hazard” Harris to the fold and spent time in clubs all over the world indoctrinating him to life as a rock & roll dog. The thousands of miles and countless shows paid off as Harris’ drum playing (you can pick up a punk influence) adds a new ferocity to the band’s sound. The new rhythm section of Hazard and Hannon allows Theado’s leads to soar and American Dog has never sounded tighter and more vicious.
The band breaks out the instrumental track and Theado showcase 2012 A.D. into the album’s title track (was that “from out of nowhere” reference a shoutout to your friends at FOON Mr. Hannon?). Hannon’s bass leads the way on Poison Smile and features his most sinister sounding vocals ever. On this one Hannon is the love child of an unholy union between Alice Cooper and Jim Morrison and it’s one of the best performances he’s ever given.
The horny and cocksure Hannon returns on the furious Lust and Greed and Bathroom Romance featuring a killer riff and dazzling solo from Theado and is destined to be a favorite on their upcoming tour. The whole thing wraps up with a cover of The Cramps Can Your Pussy do the Dog complete with a taste of Wango Tango. If there’s a better song for American Dog to remake than this one, I’ll be damned if I know what it is. It’s the perfect capper for a perfect album.
Like I said, the FOON crew is biased when it comes to American Dog so do yourself a favor and head over to www.americandog.us and buy this thing. If it doesn’t become a staple of your summer barbeques, campfire singalongs or bar mitzvah’s, you can make us buy you a beer when you see us out and about.
Rating: This one is a full six-pack folks. Its full-bodied taste goes down smooth with no champagne of beers headache.
The members of American Dog will be appearing on an upcoming episode of the From Out of Nowhere podcast to discuss Poison Smile in early June.