Review: Dear Rouge in my living room, November 5, 2020

Look at me, cheering like a geek in my living room.

Five years to the night since the first time I saw them live at Toronto’s Mod Club, Dear Rouge played my living room tonight. Well, sort of. They played a live concert on YouTube from a funky joint in Vancouver, giving the live treatment to their entire first album, Black to Gold.

They also rocked my son’s bedroom, as I fed our gecko, Echo. Liam enjoyed some of the show on my phone as he got ready for bed and we looked at the poster on his wall that Danielle and Drew McTaggart signed for him a couple years ago. Then they played our master bedroom for a few minutes. Then the hallway and our staircase. And finally I moved down to the living room and screen mirrored the show onto our tv.

I stood two feet away from the screen, smiling wide and swaying to the sweet, sweet music. It was almost like I was in the front row at an actual live, in-person Dear Rouge show. Almost.

Watching this show was one of the most 2020 experiences I’ve had in 2020. It was weird, it was joyous, there was a technical glitch when suddenly my phone inexplicably switched to an Eddie Vedder video, and there was also technical togetherness, as fans chatted and gushed in the comments throughout the show.

The whole band seemed to be having so much fun, playing as a loud, full band, for real (virtual) fans for the first time in a long time, and they were as tight as they always are. Danielle’s voice soared as it always does. “Best Look Lately” gave me happiness chills as it always does. And their soft, sweet duet on “October Second” melted hearts as it always does.

As the last notes of a raucous, extended version of “Tongues” rang out, I quietly applauded in my living room, so as not to wake up the boys. So 2020.

And I’ve just got to thank Dear Rouge for shining 50 minutes or so of pure joy into their fans’ lives. But it’s not like we need any extra joy these days, right? Sigh. One day, 2020, you will be over and hundreds or thousands of people will be able to rock and sweat and dance and feel joy together as bands like Dear Rouge beam beautiful sounds into our ears. That’s a promise, 2020!

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