Lost and Found

by Dave Urbanski

CCM Magazine November 1999

Christian music's top Dogs hit the studio and stage on a new label.

Lock your doors. The Lost Dogs have escaped from the pound. The eclectic combo featuring frontmen from Christian alterna-rock's most influential bands - Terry Taylor (Daniel Amos), Gene Eugene (Adam Again), Derri Daugherty (The Choir) and Mike Roe (The 77s) - is back.

After debuting with 1992's Scenic Routes, the Lost Dogs released two other rootsy pop records - Little Red Riding Hood (1993) and Green Room Serenade, Part One (1996) - but have been silent for the last three years. Enter Brandon Ebel, who signed Lost Dogs to a three-album deal on his BEC label earlier this year and got the foursome to come together this summer (between their other projects, including a new indie project from the 77s and Daugherty's first solo album) at Eugene's L.A.-based Green Room studio. The foursome were there to record it's BEC debut, Gift Horse, which is due on the streets Nov. 2.

"We needed the songs to breathe a little more," said Taylor, who composed all the tunes for the Lost Dogs initial, week-long session in June. "Part of the approach was to break down the arrangements and color them by some unexpected [instrumental] thing."

"When everybody comes here from different cities, we get a heck of a lot done," Eugene explained. "The amount of studio experience between us is mind-boggling."

"We wanted this record to be a really solid piece of work. Simpler. Less is more, " Roe said. "It's not the potpourri of styles from our last records, but our fans won't feel out of place listening to it." Added Taylor, "It's gonna be folkish in approach. More back to our first couple of records." Along with, he noted, "slice of life" lyrics.

With the Lost Dogs, the truth is that no one, not even the band, knows what's going to happen next.

"What's most remarkable about the Lost Dogs is that we're the kings of procrastination, the kings of how-to-destroy-your-own-career-without-really-trying," Roe explained with his famous candor. "We're all from bands that have fallen apart. We've been through tragedies and pain, self-inflicted and otherwise. And we [represent] four disparate musical styles. And yet we have the ability to come together in a very short time and creat something cohesive and beautiful. Anytime I see anything like that I consider it miraculous - a God-thing. The band's a gift to us that we can't refuse. As far as I'm concerned there's no good reason it should have worked, consistently, after nine years, every time."