Why Darlene Shrugg Rules by Justin Gordon (2015)

 In Why This Rules
Darlene Shrugg

Darlene Shrugg

Hey world, you want to know why Darlene Shrugg, or should I say “Darlene My Queen”, rules, huh?

I have an obvious bias formed from being a close friends with drummer, Simone TB for the past 17 years. She and the people who play in Darlene Shrugg (which comprises of members from US Girls, Slim Twig, Ice Cream, Tropics + + +) sort of set the example of what “art punk” is as an inner city culture and rearranged my pre-teen limbic system. They were some of the people who helped shape the ideas of what I hold to be cool, what having healthy politics meant, the importance of not being a jerk and what being creative was about. Buy Simone and the people from Darlene a beer when you see them, they are a constant embodied reminder that people can be artists and don’t owe anybody an explanation.

They will interrupt you with a real cool stare, you know what I mean?

They are the rockers who’ve been working together since high school. They rule because they are made up of some of the realest people and most prominent musicians in Toronto. They are underground and experimental, they are above ground, and they also don’t care about ground all at the same time. They’re the group who plays cards on Sundays listening to Q107’s Psychedelic Sunday broadcast, as they decompress from weeks of daily, back to back practices in their industrial studio lined in forest wallpaper. I saw the 5 piece play their second show on Independence Day, where the $10 admission also covered you for a can of beer and a hot dog. They assembled, dressed in disco attire and Toronto Public Library merchandise, to lay down a double set that rang out in such heavy, refined layers of noisy psych-rock that were so compelling, that you could use their sound waves as a guide to find your way home hours after the show. After they knew you made it home safely, they vanished for a brief time to record demos in a bunker in New Mexico.

Darlene Shrugg is hot, look out for them. They’re looking out for us, in this way of composing a sound that could dissemble a brick wall with an air of ’70s pop-music, to then offer up a pair of earplugs in a hand printed box as band merchandise.

There’s no need for a conclusion, not yet. See you at the show.

Justin Gordon is one of the founding printmakers behind silkscreen collective, Raft & Map, and will be presenting a series of painted figures entitled The Sun Comes Through The Glass (Somebody To Be My Eyes) at Kazoo! Fest 2015.


Advance tickets for Darlene Shrugg, Deerhoof and Baby Labour (Friday, April 10th) can be purchased HERE.


darlene show promo


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