No lemons, no melon.
If you read the previous two statements, you’re probably scratching your head. First, what in the world is a “Dopapod” and second, how exactly are the two related? To answer the masses: the statements are palindromes, meaning the letters mirror each other from start to finish, beginning to end. The masters of palindromes are Dopapod, a Boston-raised jam band that has been defying the genre by producing some of the most unique sounds through their album titles, which are all palindromic, including “Never Odd or Even” and “I Saw Live Dopapod, Evil Was I.”
Celebrating their 10-year anniversary in 2017, Dopapod has made sure to continue their decade long party where they began, with genre-bending sounds that mix the progressive whims of electronica with the intricate stylings of a jam band.
“We always try and switch up the show, especially if it’s within a four to five hour drive radius,” said Eli Winderman, keyboardist and vocalist for Dopapod. “At this point, we have enough songs that we can do four nights in a row of completely unique setlists.”
Winderman noted that this notoriety over the years has grown from a welcoming fanbase, one which contains fans that are willing to travel eight or more hours in order to catch a run of three to four shows. He has attributed Dopapod’s recent climb to the barrier between fans and the band being broken by social media, specifically through Facebook.
“They [fans] are really accepting of pretty much whatever you want to do,” said Winderman. “It’s not like in other scenes where there is a sort of pretentious attitude towards the band.”
“It’s almost like a high wire act, it’s okay if you fall because you’re taking chances and that’s what people like,” added Winderman.
While their fans keep selling out performances and catching the band at highly-respected music festivals including Peach Fest and Camp Bisco, Winderman noted a change in the jam band sphere as a whole. Winderman explained that it is now a scene relies on pop-infused tunes to catch the audience’s attention and in addition, a changing landscape of music festivals, specifically the Gathering of the Vibes Festival in Bridgeport, Conn, which was discontinued in 2016, which ran annually for over two decades. The keyboardist also commented on the irony that without the Grateful Dead, much of the electronic music and festivals, such as Electric Daisy Carnival, would not exist.
“Especially now with EDM and the other electronic side of it, it is interesting to see how it has evolved from the Grateful Dead to Phish, and then Phish was doing all their festivals, then they stopped and that started Bonnaroo, and Bonnaroo started all these other festivals,” said Winderman.
Just as EDM primarily relies on the instrumental experimentation with frequencies, so did Dopapod initially, only experimenting with vocals during the past few years due to their inclination to perform live covers. “It’s a whole other instrument and a whole other level of deeper meaning that you can add to music, which I believe can be really powerful,” said Winderman. “You have to evolving for yourself, not for the audience.”
Outside of the performance sphere, Dopapod has been hard at work producing a new record, which is due out in the fall, as well as a new live record, “II Saw Live Dopapod, Evil Was II,” which is set to drop on March 31.
Dopapod will play at the Warehouse in downtown Fairfield, Conn. on Sunday, April 9.