Bands to Watch: All Dogs ready to come unleashed

Andy Downing, Columbus Alive

All Dogs, like Drew Barrymore or the potato battery standard to every grade school science fair, has grown up under the spotlight.

Following the 2013 release of its debut cassette, the garage-pop crew received praise from national media outlets (including tastemaking websites Pitchfork and Stereogum) and fellow musicians alike. Waxahatchee's Katie Crutchfield, for one, even took to Twitter to hail the powerful emotions brought about by the band's music, writing, "all dogs made me cry."

Rather than rushing a follow-up to capitalize on the growing buzz, however, the musicians exhibited admirable patience, opting to step back to allow the material to develop more naturally.

"I really wanted the songs to be crafted and taken care of and thought out," said singer/guitarist Maryn Jones, who also plays in Saintseneca, seated in the booth of an Old North diner during an early January interview. "I love the old songs, but they're definitely [more impulsive], like, 'We're going to play these songs together, and, whoa, people like them?!' With these it was like, 'People are listening, so I want to say something.' They're a little darker, and a little more of a representation of things it's not easy to talk about."

In early 2014 the band also recruited a new member into the fold, guitarist Nick Harris of NONA, and the past dozen or so months have been essential to helping the Philadelphia-based musician build chemistry with the original trio of Jones, bassist Amanda Bartley and drummer Jesse Wither. Now with All Dogs operating in peak form, the band is finally set to begin work on its highly anticipated full-length. In early February the musicians are scheduled to decamp to Philly for two weeks of recording alongside producer Kyle Gilbride (Waxahatchee, Swearin') with an eye on a late spring/early fall release on Salinas Records.

While the addition of Harris has allowed the material to blossom sonically - "His parts really … make the songs feel so much bigger," Jones said - the lyrics still remain intensely personal in nature.

"I have a lot of trouble writing about things outside my brain and outside myself; I'm pretty self-aware, and I spend a lot of time in my own head," said Jones, who has plans to release a "quieter, weirder" solo album dubbed The Offer under the name Yowler in March. "That's what I feel most strongly about: my feelings and how they manifest in my life."

It's an open-hearted approach that helps explain the strong connection between band and audience - a bond the musicians intend to develop more fully over the coming year.

"The internet shit is weird and hype is weird," Jones said. "Really what matters to me is when people come out to the shows. That's my favorite part, and that's been going well for us."

Columbus Alive's Bands To Watch 2015

Skully's Music-Diner

9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 31

1151 N. High St., Short North