This Dilly Dally article was written by Max Litchfield, a GIGsoup contributor. Edited by Natalie Whitehouse
Canadians Dilly Dally have delivered a debut LP that is worth paying attention to. Their mix of grunge, garage and indie rock make ‘Sore’ sound jagged, punchy and striking – but all in a good way.
The screeching vocals from Katie Monks are the epicentre of the four-piece. Her voice screams and dive bombs consistently through each and every song, each one sounding more strained and emphatic than the last. She possesses the harsh power of Courtney Love but the restrained and thoughtful delicateness of Kim Deal in her vocals.
This is not to say that the rest of Dilly Dally are lacking musically. Liz Ball, childhood friend of Monks, roars throughout the album; with filthy grunge riffs, alongside the sure footedness of Jimmy Tony on bass and Benjamin Reinhartz on drums, both relatively new members of Dilly Dally. Together, the band creates the perfect scuzzy backdrop for which Monks can display her invigorating, at times angry and strained, vocals.
In terms of memorable songs, Dilly Dally do not have a problem. Album opener ‘Desire’ is arguably the best track on the LP. Monks’ elongated screeched countdown of “1, 2, 3, 4!” followed by the crushing grunge/scuzzy shred of the instruments brings excitement to the ears, unlike many other bands around at the moment. Similarly on recently released single ‘Purple Rage’ there is an insight into how loud and angry Dilly Dally are, again using the flawless dynamic of Monks’ screams and shrieks whilst the rest of the band replicates the fury and rage of the vocals with their instruments, creating an infectious and gripping track.
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Towards the end of ‘Sore’ there is more evidence of the control that Dilly Dally have in their repertoire on these tracks. ‘Green’ manages to combine the grunge elements they favour on the first half of the album, with perhaps a softer, more indie rock direction. Here we see Monks’ balance with her voice giving equal space for her roaring shrieks but also her softer subtler vocals.
Last track ‘Burned By The Cold’ brings the album to a close again in more of a softer, calmer style. A slow piano plays while Monks displays the more vulnerable sound of her vocals, giving ‘Sore’ a poignant and emotive ending away from the sludgy grunge and raw power that largely makes up the rest of the album.
The mix of styles on ‘Sore’ shows the proficiency of the Canadian four-piece. The balance exerted throughout is gripping, with Katie Monks’ colossal vocals exhibited in every song, and the rest of the band battling and succeeding in providing the platform for the delivery of these vocals. It’s clear to see that this one of the best debut’s of 2015, and Dilly Dally are a band going places with venom and passion.
‘Sore’ is out now via Partisan Records.