Dearly Beloved throws their Canadian courtesy out the window and bludgeons the stage while they pour their guts out. The Toronto-based band is bursting at the seams with spooky undertones, dark and stormy melodies, and passionate, fast-paced beats that’ll get your heart racing. (In a good way–we promise!)
The band is comprise of Rob Higgins (vocals/bass), Niva Chow (vocals/theramin), Bobby Haseby (guitar), Lysh Haugen (guitar) and Aaron Morrice (drums)–all of whom met in Toronto and all realized together that they needed music if they were going to survive this crazy world. Rob Higgins – bass/vox
“Music is fucking super sacred and magical,” Higgins tells BTRtoday. “So it’s just about finding a way to that and opening yourself to it to let it all happen.”
Though they are maniacs on stage and in the studio, they’re really sweet people. When we chatted with Higgins he displayed a combination of the utmost kindness and also an IDGAF rock’n’roll attitude–it was actually quiet a breath of fresh air. We chatted about Dearly Beloved, life, and their newest album “Admission,” out now on Aporia Records.
Album artwork courtesy of the band
According to Higgins the band took a fresh approach for recording “Admission.” He explains that for their other albums they had gotten into the habit of just going into the studio at Rancho de la Luna, with nothing prepared and letting things happen and flow naturally–something Higgins admits that Dave Catching, guitarist for Eagles of Death Metal and resident at Rancho de la Luna, suggested they do.
However, this time around they took a more traditional approach. It was the first time they worked with a manager and he suggested they pre-write their songs, maybe play them a little on the road first, and try working with a producer to make the whole process a little more organized. Higgins expresses that it was a longer process, but it worked out nicely.
“I really like having the different experience–we did it one way and I liked it; we did it this way and as an individual and a band I think we’re richer in experience,” Higgins expresses. “I’m glad we’ve been open to doing it different ways.”
They worked with Daniel Rey, who not only produced for The Ramones and The Misfits, but is also the current guitarist for the staple NYC punk band The Dictators. Rey is a punk rock pioneer and seemed to be a perfect match for Dearly Beloved–they all seem very happy with how the album turned out, and we at BTRtoday have to agree!
The album makes sure to keep their dark vibes and chaotic interludes. Tracks like “When You Had The Choice” and “Blood In The Water” reveal their hardcore punk influences with heavy bass drum, guttural screams, and fast melodies. Other tracks like “Boxing Days” and “These Data” seem to express a more emotional side to the band, but are still portrayed in Dearly Beloved’s true rock’n’roll fashion.
One of the tracks was even recently paired with an unnerving and thrilling music video that was released on Halloween via Noisey Canada. It features the song “I Tried To Leave” and a chilling cult-like, sacrificial scenario with live clips of the band rocking out in a dungy basement lit in red.
Dearly Beloved has been playing music together for around 10 years now. Higgins explains that they had about a two-and-a-half year period where there wasn’t much activity happening between them, but for at least a solid seven years they’ve been serious about the music.
“It felt like there was this burst of energy out of the gate and then it was a reaction to life,” Higgins states about the band getting together. “It was just an outlet for some friends that were going through some stuff, and that’s really the origin of the band–then after a while it really started to become a creative outlet that we counted on.”
Touring flyer courtesy of the band
The ever-blossoming music scene in Toronto, Canada brought these music prowlers together. Chow and Higgins have known each other the longest, having met while in college; Higgins calls her the “rock tigress” of the group. Dearly Beloved first started off with two female backing vocalists with a more The Pixies feel to it. However, life happened and those vocalists went on to pursue other things, so Chow took over. Now, Higgins and Chow have become the powerful vocalist duo in Dearly Beloved that blast the amps to 11 and break the speakers open.
Right out of college Higgins was able to snag a full-time position playing in Change of Heart, a well-known Canadian touring band who are signed with Virgin Records. He immediately was immersed in the music business and able to acquire skills from that experience that he is now trying his best to apply to Dearly Beloved. “It was like a crash course in the music industry–[it] was really eye opening,” Higgins admits.
Currently, Dearly Beloved is rearing up to go on a European tour where they will be hitting cities in Eastern Europe that they’ll be playing for the first time,starting in Warsaw, Poland. The band has been on many European tours before–Higgins thinks it’s been around six European tours in the last two years! They also plan on getting back into the studio to record new tunes.