Dear Rouge Paint The Town Red With A Synth Love Paintbrush

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Reviewer - Shila Bimji

Photographer - Sharon Steele

I was listening to Dear Rouge a week before the show, therefore, I felt as though this was already written in my head and heart. This is my natural reaction when it comes to the bands that I love. This how I generally feel when a Canadian band of any genre grabs my attention, which these days seems to be few and far between.

I've seen Dear Rouge 10 times in various capacities ranging from: Opening acts,  free public appearances, record store exclusive events plus a collection of private shows (some invites and some crashed). Seeing them finally in a proper club show was a celebration for long time fans like myself, some within the audience, who have shared the same journey as I have.

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Everything about them reminds me of my favourite Canadian band Metric. The music is melodic and additive and lead singer Danielle McTaggart is a perfect recipe of synth perfection. This is a compliment considering that my best friend Peter and I are obsessed with Metric. Is this our new Metric?

I am very picky about my synth pop in general and when I first heard the song I Heard I Had circulated on various friend’s Facebook pages (feeds), I was instantly hooked. The songs they performed are still imprinted in my memory, the choruses catchy, which is a staple requirement for a successful live set.

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Dear Rouge had every reason to cake walk this show. They were performing to a crowd that were there for a different purpose, yet they played the set as if their career depended on it. It may have not been the right audience for the show but it did strike a chord with me for sure.

The chemistry between band members was also part of my addiction to their performance. When I look at Dear Rouge, I look at a band that I am confident will be going places.

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They debuted a few new songs, covers and songs off their first album in equal measures. In fact, all their material holds up well live. I gained a new appreciation for some songs this time around that I wasn't keen on before and it was a delight to witness their set.