Halifax’s Dog Day Regroup As Quartet

Photo by Carolyn Hirtle
Photo by Carolyn Hirtle

Nearly a decade after forming, Halifax indie rock band Dog Day is returning to its roots. Originally formed as a quartet, the group pared down to the core of husband and wife duo Seth Smith and Nancy Urich for 2011’s acclaimed release Deformer.

In the time since Deformer, the members of Dog Day haven’t exactly been idle. Back in 2011, Smith began work on what would become a feature film, Lowlife , in addition to the accompanying soundtrack. The film premièred to a sold-out audience in Montreal and would go on to win the audience award for Best Feature at Halifax’s Atlantic Film Festival before being screened in 24 different cities across Canada.

Performing at Moncton’s Esquire Tavern tonight, Dog Day guitarist Urich says the time she and Smith spent performing as a duo had its benefits. She says that they simply chose to paint a broader picture with their new record Fade Out, due for release next week.

“In the time that we were performing as a duo, we learned how to make the band’s sound to be as full as possible,” Urich says. “We still employ some of those tricks now in the four-piece band. It was really great to work as a duo. Seth and I had fun jamming whenever we wanted.

“When we were making Fade Out, we decided that we would record whatever instruments and parts that we wanted for the songs. I recorded all of the drum tracks, except for one song, while both Seth and I handled the guitar, bass, keyboards and vocals. When it came down to reproducing the sounds on record live, we needed a few deadly players to help us pull it off and so we asked a couple of friends to join us.”

For their current Eastern Canadian tour, one that will bring the quartet as far away as Toronto over the next nine days, Smith and Urich are being joined by bassist Mark Grundy (Heaven For Real, Quaker Parents) and drummer Seamus Dalton (Monomyth).

For the moment, Urich is looking forward to getting back on the road with the newest configuration of Dog Day. With a few screenplays already in his pocket, she believes that her husband will continue his foray into the world of film. And that is alright with her. If anything, Dog Day has proven to be a security blanket of sorts for all involved, something they can come back to at a time of their choosing. Undertaking brief tours like their current jaunt is the most realistic option for them at this time.

If you have been delaying catching the group live for any kind of reason, take them in while you still have the chance. With a variety of projects in its future, when Dog Day might return to the Metro Moncton area for a show is a bit of an unknown at this stage of the game.

“We are not exactly sure what lies ahead for the group. We have some other stuff on the go this coming spring and so we don’t expect to be touring all that much,” Urich says. “We are always going to make music though. I am sure we will start touring again whenever it makes the most sense for us.”

What: Dog Day with John Jerome & The Congregation
When: Friday, Dec. 6, 10 p.m.
Where: Esquire Tavern, 2 Reade St., Moncton