The Dresden Dolls

fter reading my post about the Ditty Bops, jwz (yes, that jwz. Because I am totally that cool. Shut up! I am! Jeeze!) pointed me toward videos by The Dresden Dolls, specifically Coin-Operated Boy and Girl Anachronism.

Holy shit. I immediately went to the iTunes Music Store and bought their album.

This is another reason I’m so happy to be living in this age, with access to this technology. As recently as five years ago, I never would have heard of this band on my own, and even if I was fortunate enough to accidentally stumble upon them, I’d have to drive to a music store that not only carried their album, but would let me preview the album before I bought it. Instead, Jamie told me, "they’re your new favorite videos ever, you just don’t know it yet." and he was totally right. [I could put a huge rambling dissertation about the Long Tail and the
value of word-of-mouth marketing here, but I’ll spare you.] The thing is, the Dresden Dolls and the Ditty Bops sound nothing alike, and the only thing they really have in common (in this instance) is the visual style of their videos.But the music they make together, and the passion in Amanda’s lyrics grabbed me by the cerebellum and wouldn’t let go. The last album I had this sort of visceral oh-my-god-i-have-to-listen-to-it-over-and-over-and-over-again reaction to was Mike Doughty’s Skittish / Rockity Roll.

You’ve got to go to their website right now and read Amanda’s bio. Wow.

This is not music for everyone, but if it hits you, holy shit will it hit you.

27 thoughts on “The Dresden Dolls”

  1. You are so right about the dresden dolls. I bought their small single release for coin-operated boy. With a war pigs cover I was sold the first listen. I only bought the CD in the first place because I enjoyed the artwork for the cover. I am a fan now and will be.

  2. Cool band, but I’m a bit surprised you haven’t heard anything by them before…. I know Teh Kriss has mentioned them on more than one occasion–and if you can’t trust Kriss, who can you trust?

  3. I feel the same “isn’t technology great” feeling you described in relation to Doughty. I’m a Soul Coughing fan but I couldn’t find anything about his new music for sale last time I wandered across his website (you probably linked to it then too.) So your link today turned into a Christmas present for myself. Of course now I see that you have Doughty in the “Listen” box over there on the right side, but I didn’t see that earlier. And I’m still grooving on the Ditty Bops. That tall one is captivating. You have excellent taste in stunning women in corsets. :-)

  4. I saw them with NIN at the Soma in San Diego… they were AMAZING live. Brian’s talent is so under-represented on the CD. That guy is the best drummer I’ve ever seen, hands down… and I’ve seen alot.
    They’ll be in town in December I believe, at the Fonda.

  5. Wil! Glad you found the Dolls, they’re AWESOME, and really friendly, and did I mention Awesome?
    Our Sketch Show in San Jose parodied Coin Operated Boy back in July, and we sent it to them, and they were awesome enough to link to it from their website. We got HUGE compliments from them on it, and I’m blathering like a fanboy now because of how cool they are so I’ll just shut up and leave you with this:
    Beer Activated Girl (a totally authorized parody)

  6. I’m so glad you found The Dolls. They’re local Boston (but obviously bigger than Boston now) and have been very popular with a lot of my friends for years. Amanda grew up in the town I now live in (Lexington). My boyfriend’s co-worker/friend has done a lot of photography for them- pretty pictures! There’s more on his site if you start from the beginning.
    Oh, and if you see the DVD they put out, in the sea of goth audience, you may well see one obnoxious Hawaiian shirt: my best friend’s husband. Them crazy kids!

  7. Wil, I too am glad you have discovered The Dolls. I discovered them just over a year ago when I stumbled across their “Girl Anachronism” video on iTunes (when videos where still free) and was intrigued. A short time later I came across the “Coin Operated Girl” video on iTunes and I was hooked, I immediately bought the album on iTunes. I only hope they come to my part of the country sometime so I can see them live.

  8. I Love Music Discoveries like this.

    The Dresden Dolls: ” (Via WIL WHEATON dot NET: Where is my mind?.) I love music discovery via this method. There are a ton of bands I’d never heard of because they’re not marketed to death like some of the…

  9. I stumbled upon the Ditty Bops when they opened for the Dresden Dolls during their pre-Nine Inch Nails tour. Now *that* was a hell of a concert (they actually go together really, really well). I highly recommend seeing both bands in concert – Ditty Bops are a lot of fun, and the Dresden Dolls are about the best live act I’ve seen, ever. They’re even more intense than on the album – and that’s saying something!

  10. Aw, you mean I can’t take credit for this?? Someone else got to you before I posted my comment the other day? Damn. 😉
    I’m so glad you like the Dolls. You HAVE to see them next time they play in L.A. — their shows aren’t just rock concerts, they are circus-type Events.
    Trivia: Amanda and Joss Whedon went to the same college, but 10 years apart. :) (I went there too, somewhere in between.)

  11. The Dresden Dolls are absolutely excellent live, especially when they headline clubs like the Viper Room. Glad you finally got in to them.

  12. I love the Dresden Dolls. I actually wrote a review on one their CD’s for a college mag I worked for about a year ago. Been listening to them ever since.
    I wish they’d come to FL so I can see them live.

  13. Yes, the Dresden Dolls are teh awesome. Though they *almost* overplayed “Coin Operated Boy” on the indy station here in Phoenix. I am surprised you hadn’t heard them before. Great album. And the chick has a cool name 😉

  14. Love the Dresdent Dolls, though I’ve never seen them live. I first heard them last year on Kingdom of Loathing’s RadioKOL.
    Really enjoyed the Ditty Bops video–I hadn’t heard them before. Oh, and I’m listening The Trade right now–thanks for a great opportunity for folks like me who didn’t stand much of a chance of getting there to see you.

  15. Hey — thanks so much for the link to Dresden Dolls — I was so taken with their music and presentation that I immediately ordered their DVD & CD. (Yay word-of-mouth advertising:-)

  16. the Dresden Dolls have gotten a fair bit of airplay on boston radio, and they did a live show a couple of years ago at arisia, a local SF con. (the picoreview of that show from folks unfamiliar with them was “loud”.)
    they’re pretty fun, tho.

  17. really thoughtful…

    I found these lyrics after reading Wil Wheaton’s blog entry. I really like them, be forewarned, these are not for all people, lettme know what you think! The Dresden Dolls – Lyrics…

  18. Like iceberg above, I also saw them open for NIN in San Diego at SOMA back in May. Absolutely. Incredible.
    If you like their CD, you will absolutely love their live performance. So make sure to see them the next time they swing by (or near) your ‘hood!

  19. Have you checked out Pandora? It is done by the guys who did the Music Genome Project.
    Reason I ask is because I tried typing in “Wishful Thinking” by the Ditty Bops, and one of the artists it played on that station was the Dresden Dolls.
    It’s a pretty neat service, actually.

  20. Thanks for pointing me in their direction. What an amazing band. Possibly the best drummer I’ve ever seen. I bought the DVD (the CD was sold out) and was glad for it. Their “live” performance is nothing short of stunning.
    God bless the internet.

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