The Dodos get a dose of electro, but don’t lose their folky intensity, in Time to Die.
Despite its ominous title, the Dodos’ third album, Time to Die, is a vibrant follow-up to the San Francisco band’s powerful 2008 release, Visiter. With the addition of Keaton Snyder on electric vibraphone, the Dodos are no longer a guitar-and-drum duo, but their disjointed folk dynamic still revolves around rhythm and strings. Time to Die shares the sleek, organic sound of other Phil Ek–produced bands like Fleet Foxes and Band of Horses, but the refinement eliminates some of the expressive rawness that made Visiter so engaging. After all, the Dodos are at their best when hummingbird-paced finger picking flies around the turbulent, blooming beat of the drums. While Time to Die doesn’t kill with every track, it’s hard to get catchier than the beautifully sprawling sequence of “Longform,” “Fables,” and “The Strums.”