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Riffs, Rants and Rumors: Getting Drunk and Stupid With Dots Will Echo

Dots Will Echo is a computer programming term and a duo from New Jersey. Dots Will Echo are melodic power-poppers and Crazy Horse-backing-Captain Beefheart sonic provocateurs. Dots Will Echo are a brand new band that’s been around since the ‘80s. Dots Will Echo are wild-eyed rock & roll maniacs and amiable suburban family men. Dots Will Echo are Nick Berry and Kurt Biroc, though Dots Will Echo was once Nick Berry and a bunch of other guys, and has occasionally just been Nick Berry. Dots Will Echo has a double-length album coming out July 24 on Sufjan Stevens’ label, Asthmatic Kitty, entitled Drunk Is The New Sober/Stupid Is The New Dumb.

To make sense of all the above, let’s go back to the beginning with the stalwart tender of the Dots Will Echo flame, singer/songwriter Nick Berry. “I started writing songs when I was nine,” remembers the Garden State native, “maybe younger. I remember being a little kid, I had a friend down the street, and we wrote songs as a kind of competition, I didn’t even play an instrument at the time.” But Berry’s interests took a more outré turn while he was still in high school. “I was in an avant-garde band,” he says, recalling that group’s theatrical onstage escapades, “My friend Roy had built a gigantic instrument he called a Googis…he had rented a truck to get it to this one gig, and the guy [the truck driver] had taken off. He had no way to get it home, so he took a hammer and destroyed the thing onstage. We had a song called ‘Rubella,’ which was just all guitar feedback and oscillators, and at one point we would just lean the guitars up against the amplifiers and then run out into the audience screaming. And every time we did it, it was the kind of thing nobody could process [laughs], these people just had the look of a deer in the headlights. One gig there was a dog there, and I started chasing this dog around the audience…blowing free jazz on a clarinet while this dog is barking. And the guy that owned the dog joined the band.”

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