Magnum Dopus is an indie rock band that broke into the live Memphis music scene in January 2019. They quickly gained recognition in their hometown for their new wave indie groove rock sound. Drawing on a wide range of musical influences, their music has been said to display traces of inspiration from bands like Talking Heads, Joy Division, David Bowie and The Smiths while never quite being able to place a finger on any one. They are uncanny in their ability to diversify their beats, harmonies and progressions in ways that can go from disco to pop to classic rock as well as taking small detours through punk and even country town. They do this however, while still being able to manifest their sound on the whole in a patently and undeniably “Dopus” rock way.
The band began as a dynamic duo between vocalist Andrew McCarty and guitarist George Cole who met through friends in a previous music project. The matchup was an interesting one. Andrew was a young drummer very much a product of the age of rock dominated by Stone Temple Pilots, Pearl Jam and Smashing Pumpkins while George emulated a guitarist much more influenced by a punk and classic rock style of playing. After a year of tinkering the two were able to record a full length album, titled Hizumi, which established the foundation of what is now the Dopus sound.
Live performances were not an option for Andrew and George at the time, but as fate would have it, a new found ability to fill the void opened up in the life of Andrew’s friend and workmate Lance Yarbrough. Former rhythm guitarist turned bassist, Lance joined the band upon Andrew and George’s completion of their first album. Being a former rhythm guitarist, Lance’s bass picking style is more fluid and rhythmic and has a less choppy scale driven vibe. As a three man band now they were still one drummer short of being able to perform live. The only thing left to do for the time being was to continue writing music.
As a newly hatching three piece, creativity began to skyrocket, inspired songs began to drop like bombs and they began to sense that they were on to something special. Inspired song writing however was met with a spout of troubling experiences in finding a talented and reliable drummer; after which the band managed to find their way to John Floyd, a drummer whom Andrew had met years prior at a recording session. John easily had more live performance experience than the rest of the band members which boosted their confidence in their music when he said he loved it and wanted to help get their album stage ready. During rehearsals John also fell in love with the new music being put together by the three members and quickly dove head first into the writing process with his adaptable ability to know how to give a song exactly what it needs in the beat department.
The band was stage ready by January 2019 and has since been lighting up the Memphis music scene, turning heads and gaining notoriety with their hooky and memorable tunes. The Magnum Dopus sound, while definitely rock, is uniquely palatable against a wide variety of musical genres. This band has done away with your typical rock distortion, choppy riffs and rough vocal tones. They have instead opted for softer tones for both guitars and vocals; coupled with simple yet unpredictable progressions. They do this while still managing to deliver them with drums and bass that can kick like a mule and guitar tones and vocal melodies that’ll melt your face. Above all Magnum Dopus brings songs with hooks.