Posted by: will | July 25, 2006

The Format…

The Format “Dog Problems” (The Vanity Label/Nettwork America)

Buy it at Insound!

Sometimes a good pop record sounds great even to a jaded music listener like myself. The Format have delivered just that with their second album, Dog Problems. The band originally signed to Western Tread which is the label owned by Jim Adkins of Jimmy Eat World. After The Format’s debut EP on the label the band made the jump to the major leagues with 2003’s Interventions And Lullabies. While that album was a fun pop record it hit on some cringe worthy cheesy moments. That’s not to say that Dog Problems does not have some of the same drawbacks though. However, those moments are fewer and far between. Dog Problems quite simply shows The Format maturing into a smart pop group with actual substance.

The first three tracks are all it takes to realize that Dog Problems is a much different beast for The Format. The opening track “Matches” really catches you off guard. It echoes the orchestral pop of Elliott Smith. “I’m Actual” also shows the tremendous growth for the band. It emphasizes the different instrumental flourishes of horns and strings that are found throughout Dog Problems. “Time Bomb” is the infectious third track with a wonderful chorus that sounds like Queen! The album’s title track “Dog Problems” is an outstanding experimental pop song that is led by a jazzy horn refrain. “Snails” is a sweet downtempo song with a country vibe that reminds us that sometimes it’s best to stop and smell the roses every once in awhile.

The only complaint I really have with Dog Problems is that I wish The Format would fully indulge their senses more often. Sometimes the band falls back into just writing simple and straightforward pop songs. And while they sound good, frankly they just do not have the magic of the more eclectic material found on Dog Problems. That being said, one wonders what in the hell is wrong with the music industry. If it was not such a corrupt machine The Format would be dominating the charts cause this is pop music the way it was meant to be.

RIYL: Jimmy Eat World, Motion City Soundtrack, Travis Morrison


The Format – She Doesn’t Get It (mp3)

The Format – The Compromise (mp3)



  1. […] Original post by soundaslanguage and software by Elliott Back […]

  2. […] Original post by soundaslanguage and software by Elliott Back […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: