Darlings of Chelsea stalk Bruno's Grill
Thursday, Oct 06, 2011 06:00 am
The Darlings of Chelsea, a Toronto-based punk band, will be rocking out this Sunday (Oct. 9) at Bruno’s Bar & Grill in Banff.
The group consists of four members, three of whom have prominently played in other bands: Jay Millette, guitarist from The Black Halos; Robby Ruckus, bass player from Robin Black; Chris Nova, drummer from Kill Cheerleader and lead singer and guitarist Paul Thompson.
The Outlook spoke with Ruckus last week, when the Darlings were stopped in Thunder Bay.
“We were all playing in our different previous bands, and it was just kind of the time for all of those bands to end, and we were still hanging around the rock bars in Toronto and saying that the rock bands out there don’t rock that hard any more,” said Ruckus, explaining the origin of the band.
“We thought there was a missing void in rock ‘n’ roll. and in honest rock ‘n’ roll – just plugging in some instruments and going.”
The music they play is straight up rock ‘n’ roll, he stressed.
“First and foremost, we want to entertain and put on an exciting, fun show, and if you sit and listen to the record and really listen to the lyrics, then you’ll realize that even though we’re a party band, there’s actually quite a few political undertones,” said Ruckus. “Maybe not quite in your face, but they’re definitely there.”
The band has released two albums, first The Mimico Sessions EP in 2009, followed by this year’s Panic Is Worse Than The Emergency.
“There are things we’re passionate about, our songs are not all drink beer drink beer, and every single lyric on that record represents some kind of personal experience that someone in the band has had.”
For this tour, the Darlings are heading west as far as Victoria, then back to Montreal, with lots of stops in along the way.
“It’s definitely the excitement that keeps us on the road,” said Ruckus. “We love playing; there’s nothing we’d rather be doing than be on the road touring, playing different cities, meeting different people.
“That sound when you first plug in your guitar when you’re 10 years old… we still get to do that when we’re older.”
While the band has never played the Bow Valley before, Ruckus has toured the region with a previous band.
“I’ve played in Canmore, at the Canmore Hotel, but I’ve never played Banff. I’m really excited to,” he said. “It was pretty interesting, I was on the road with another band, and the lead singer at the time ended up tearing the ceiling out and I think we had a $500 repair bill afterward.”
Darlings of Chelsea has toured extensively in the east and in Europe, but this is their first thrust into Western Canada.
“We’ve done lots of the rest of Canada, but we haven’t made it all the way out to the west,” said Ruckus. “We’re super excited, people have been asking since our first show when are we going to play out west, and we’ve wanted to and now it’s finally happening.”
The show was organized by Tyson Maiko, who plays with the local band Archimedean Groove, when he saw that the Darlings of Chelsea would be passing through.
“I reached out and told them they should come play in Banff,” he said. “I ran around town trying to find a place for them to play, and Garry (Gonis) offered up Bruno’s.”
Maiko formerly played with the punk rock band Gob. Archimedean Groove will also play at the show, along with Vancouver band The Lifetakers.
“The Lifetakers, they just started their band in the last year or so, and they’re doing a very Johnny Thunders-esque ‘70s New York-style rock,” he said. “A little bit glamy, almost like the Faster Pussycat stuff.
“And the Darlings of Chelsea are pretty much straight up rock ‘n’ roll.”