It all started with a wedding gig. When Andrew Broder's best friend tied the knot in 2008, it brought together all former members of cryptic art-rockers Fog. Together for the first time in five years, frontman Broder, drummer Martin Dosh, bassist Mark Erickson, and guitarist Jeremy Ylvisaker had a decidedly different set of musical marching orders. "We were told to only play Tom Petty and Creedence Clearwater Revival," recalls Dosh, seated on the Icehouse patio alongside Broder and Erickson. "We ended up having a blast, and it was an important step in the realization of this new band." Inspired by the loose and rollicking gig, the reunited friends began crafting viscerally charged post-punk under a new moniker reflective of their ascendant aggression: the Cloak Ox. The antithesis of the obtuse, sample-driven work of Fog, the band's thorny debut EP, Prisen, kept the pedal to the metal. Equally raucous gigs cemented the group as a local scene lynchpin, and they topped the City Pages Picked to Click poll in 2011. Rather than ride the buzz, they went into hiding for nearly 18 months, reemerging with a full-length album, Shoot the Dog, that finds the restless quartet expanding upon their formerly primal sound. "Andy is maybe the only person I've ever known that's gotten younger the longer I've known him," says Erickson, only half-joking. "When I met him he acted like an old man. Now it's 12 years later and he actually seems younger. [Fog's 2003 album] Ether Teeth sounds like some weird outsider artist that's been around for a long time. There's a more youthful energy to the music now. I think the ideas are as complex as they've always been, we're just putting them out there with more verve."
Wed., Nov. 27, 8 p.m., 2013