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Artist Spotlight

Artist Spotlight: Diamond Rings

Photo by Jared Raab

Diamond Rings - Something Else
Diamond Rings - You & Me

Saccharine, ostentatious, and over-the-top are all adjectives that could both accurately describe John O’Regan’s solo project and also deter many from listening to his first full length album. However, if liking Diamond Rings is wrong, I don’t want to be right.

Originally part of the Toronto indie rock quartet The D’Urbervilles, O’Regan began using the name Diamond Rings in late 2008 and self-released his first single, All Yr Songs, in mid 2009. With lyrics like, “I can’t keep up with whatever is in style; I run out of breath walking the fashion mile”, one would expect Diamond Rings to be all schtick and no substance, but O’Regan’s infectious pop tunes also cover topics such as growing up, breaking societal norms, and, of course, love.

In addition to having a certain knack for writing catchy hooks, Diamond Rings’ videos cleverly reference pop culture, as well. Imagery reminiscent of early 1990s hip hop appear in the low budget production for All Yr Songs, while the more recent video for Show Me Your Stuff pays glorious homage to the boy bands in the latter part of the decade.

Rave reviews of his live shows by the likes of Brooklyn Vegan harken me to describe O’Regan as a lo-fi Lady Gaga, but until Diamond Rings ventures down past the Mason-Dixon line I’ll refrain from doing so and instead continue to listen to his new album Special Affections, available on Secret City Records October 25th, 2010.


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