Office Dog: Spiel (New West) - review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Saturday, May 18th, 2024  

Office Dog


New West

Mar 08, 2024 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

The Auckland-based trio Office Dog—consisting of Kane Strang, Mitchell Innes, and Rassani Tolovaa—wield their impeccable chemistry to rewarding ends on their debut album, Spiel. Their sound is rooted in grungy guitars and indie rock sensibilities yet pushes beyond these touchstones at almost every turn. That the trio arrives with a fully-formed sound makes sense. With the goal of collaboration in mind, Strang formed Office Dog with Innes and Tolovaa, who both have previously played with Strang (through touring and as a member of Strang’s previous band, respectively). Produced, engineered, and mixed by De Stevens, Spiel’s 12 songs never hold still, and are always looking for new ways to highlight Office Dog’s abilities. Melancholic melodies drive songs like “Hand in Hand” while the marching rhythms of “Gleam” and “Big Air” add an urgency to their dense, layered sound.

Yet these punches are only part of what Office Dog offers on Spiel. The glistening strums on “Tightropes” work like sunlight hitting ripples on a murky pond while Strang’s gentle vocals on “Warmer” might recall Alex G. “The Crater” borrows from the indie sway of Built to Spill but still delivers on Office Dog’s full sound. This is all to say that Spiel is a solid example of a band that bends influences to their will, and not the other way around. (

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 6/10


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