Dilly Dally – ‘Heaven’ review

Continuing the trend of positive punk, Toronto’s Dilly Dally blend crushing grunge with tales of redemption

We’ve talked recently about the fact that punk has, in many ways, taken a turn for the positive. In 2018, thanks to likes of Melbourne’s Camp Cope and Bristol heroes Idles, the genre’s often more about self-love and inclusivity than self-destruction and nihilism – a mission statement that Toronto’s Dilly Dally with taken to with the same enthusiasm Sid Vicious harboured for heroin.

The band’s bruising 2015 debut, ‘Sore’, received critical acclaim (and seemingly endless comparisons to Courtney Love’s ’90s rockers Hole), placing the quartet at centre of more exposure than they were perhaps equipped to cope with. As a result, main songwriter Katie Monks took some time out in a bid to reconnect with herself. These nine brilliant, woozy grunge-influenced punk tracks are products of that time. As she said in a recent interview: “It’s doom metal vibes with lots of positive messages.”

‘Sober Motel’ showcases her savage, shredding vocal – offset by the chime of guitar harmonics – while on ‘I Feel Free’ she flits between falsetto croon and grunge holler. “Believe in yourself,” Monks implores on the brooding ‘Believe’, a message of empowerment that recurs on ‘Sorry Ur Mad’, a cascading belter about forgiveness. As the album’s title implies, this is transcendent stuff.