Imagine – it's a crisp autumn evening. You're out at a garage rock show. You meet eyes with the drummer. He's sweaty and lanky, but you like it. In a crowd of post-performance cigarette smoke, he says this to you, "Bonnie, you're a work of art, you're a wildcard, you're a dreamboat..". So you run home, turn on your roommate's shitty old keyboard, and blast out the first verse of a song. The drummer goes back home to the UK to become a sweaty, lanky memory...but "Bonnie" lives on. She's the impossible, perfect muse – she's the protagonist deciding her own fate – she's Audrey Hepburn. Stay tuned for the music video for "Bonnie," where we take to the smoky, sweaty streets in a gritty, dancey kaleidoscope of lights and tights...in search of this muse.
Dilettante — meaning "amateur of the arts" — is the semi-deadly-serious moniker of a quintet that reflects like a seasoned collective, only to laugh like absolute beginners.
Reborn from Toronto mainstay For Jane, Dilettante's "amateur" self-titled debut effort is a modulated cabaret that tests how wryly powerful pop can be. The groove-proof instruments are tracked from studios big and homespun, the double fantastic harmonies are sung from the hearth of a winter cabin, and the spacious synths close the decades and distance with a performance all the way from Japan. Bittersweet throwback bops create technicolour characters, shaking and glimmering like the last sequin clinging to an attic-bound jumpsuit; then, thumping ballads croon and cry like dancing slowly, alone in the spotlight with all of your closest friends.
Bandleaders Natalie Panacci and Julia Wittmann are kindred vocalists. Born just two days apart, their celestial connection lets them intertwine but never touch — two unmistakable voices that blend impossible shapes and colours, but never lose themselves in each other. This ferocious symmetry animates "Donna" as "one hard apple to core" and "Connie" wanting "a man on a leash," then serenades with every sweetheart address from "blue baby" to "baby, you're a monster."
Drummer Bradley Connor, bassist Zachary Stuckey, and keyboardist Candice Ng wheel a theatre of set pieces out to the dance floor. With the aid of producer Maks Milczarczyk and his trusty, half-broken Roland JUNO, the space becomes smokey dives, neon afterglow, Saturday Night Fever, and the back row at the cinema. Expect bongos, rolling low end, and show-thieving synth leads.
The album Dilettante releases May 2022, with the lead single "Bonnie" on the airwaves November 9th, 2021. As the band's website, like the carnival barker at their sardonic circus marquee, proudly proclaims: "Dilettante is like no band you've seen before!"