“Dogs In Ecstasy will never die.”

That’s the final line of the “new” Dogs In Ecstasy album, Clear The Decks: Demos From The First 100 Years (Long May They Reign). We’re putting “new” in quotes because, as the title suggests, it’s a record of demos and random ditties from the art-damaged synth group’s long and delightfully goofy career (closer to 12 years than 100, but who’s counting). But hey! It’s a new Dogs In Ecstasy release! The band’s first since 2020’s Welcome Back! It’s a cause for celebration!

To make that celebration even sweeter—and to further prep folks for the March 16 record release show at Cactus Club—Dogs member Willy Dintenfass has shared the extensive liner notes for Clear The Decks. If you’re looking for, say, the inspiration behind “Ballad Of A Future Chad,” or the gear used on “Tiffany Fed Me An Edible,” look no further.

Welcome back, Dogs In Ecstasy. Never die. (Also, we’re big fans of the “pervert’s riff” in the song “Podcasting.”)


This mid-tempo grunge take on “Hey Nineteen” features the iconic “Dogs 1” synth preset from the Ensoniq ESQ-1, which was critical to phase 1 of Dogs In Ecstasy. We’ve only recently made the switch to a synth that has knobs in addition to buttons.


Recorded in the heady pre-COVID days of winter 2020 by Andrew Jambura at Silver City Studios, this song has a lot going for it: airhorn, bubble sounds from the Line 6 FM4, and Tony [Dixon] on the congas. This is one of my all-time favorite vocal performances from Molly [Rosenblum], and, if my math is right, I’ve been playing in bands with her off and on for half my life.


More bubble sounds from the FM4. There’s a version of this song that would be included here featuring some great Moog work by Jeff Graupner but I lost it. We’re playing with Jeff’s new synth-punk band Tension Pets at the Cactus Club on Saturday, March 16, 2024. Tickets available HERE.

Some emotions are best expressed through chipmunk voice. Children intuitively understand this. Speaking of children, the sticker tiger featured in the artwork for this release was made by my 2-year-old nephew Leon. To my mind, it bears some distant relation to work by Jacob Ciocci of Paper Rad and Extreme Animals. Extreme Animals are obviously a big influence on this band. Somehow it only occurred to me recently that “Dogs In Ecstasy” is sort of just a worse version of their band name.


Some emotions are best expressed through autotune. Children intuitively understand this.


Recorded by Andrew Jambura at Silver City Studios pre-The Bear. Tony D on the congas. What more do you want?


It’s always great to hear about musicians setting up and recording a part in a bathroom to get that classic sink sound, so I’d like to note that the acoustic guitar on this song was recorded in my bathroom. Later someone pointed out that it’s the guitar part from “Friend Of The Devil.” The funky drums on the outro are by Mike Birnbaum, with whom I played in Juiceboxxx’s Thunder Zone Band for a long time. Mike now makes music under the name Sickpay and the man fka Juiceboxxx is the proprietor of John’s Music Blog. It’s a great blog and it probably inspired me to write these liner notes, so if you don’t like them, blame him.


This band writes a lot of very topical songs and operates very slowly which is an interesting tension or classic self-sabotage. Our last release Welcome Back includes a song, “First Band On The Blockchain,” that had been kicking around so long I had to Google one of the lines—”Let us drink the liquid from the sarcophagus”— to see what meme it referred to when we were preparing to release the record. I’ve since forgotten again.


This one I remember: it’s about THIS article.

The music and backing vocals for this song were recorded a fourth down, then pitched up in Audacity before the main vocal was recorded. More recently a friend showed me how to do this using varispeed in Logic Pro, but sometimes you just want that shareware sound.


If anyone can find the YouTube video that inspired this song, please send it to me because I’m beginning to think I dreamt it. It includes a poignant scene in which John 5‘s aspiring YouTuber son films his mother tenderly applying his father’s corpse paint for his Rob Zombie gig. The main guitar sound in this song comes from the potent combo of the Boss PS-3 and the Line 6 FM4.


Once a year I try to write a song in the style of the self-titled album by Miami doom-pop trio Floor. I learned about this album, and a hundred other things, from legendary Cactus Club sound engineer Alex Hall. The title is from Mike Birnbaum; the synth sound is from a Dave Smith Instruments Mopho that I bought from a stranger in the parking lot of a Jimmy John’s and wish I hadn’t. I also hear The USAISAMONSTER in this.


This song features the controversial “pervert’s riff” in the first post-chorus and throughout the bridge. This riff has an amount of hammer-ons that only a pervert could stomach. It took years for Molly and Tony to convince me that this riff was okay to share in public, so if you’re disgusted by it, blame them.


In the early part of this century Tony and I played in a “speed grunge” band called Possible Fathers. At a show in Chicago someone broke a Miller High Life bottle while I was holding it and I had to go to the hospital to get stitches in my hand. Later, probably out of guilt, they gave me a Behringer multi-fx unit, which is where the reverb on this song comes from. It sounds good on the FM4.


One of the things I learned from Alex is the power of monophonic sound. One category of Dogs In Ecstasy songs features both monophonic guitar and synth bass. This song takes it a step further by hard panning each element, like might have been done in pre-stereo mixing. What can I say? I love rock ‘n’ roll.

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Feel the pain of the new economy with Dogs In Ecstasy’s buzzy “Scale 2 Infinite”

Watch children ride, get pummeled by sheep in Dogs In Ecstasy’s “Do Me Ronnie” video