When Dilly Dally’s Katie Monks and Liz Ball met, they were just two ninth graders living in the suburbs of Toronto. But in their minds, they were already a badass rock duo like Axl and Slash, Steven and Joe, Mick and Keith. To them, rock and roll glory was so imminent they got matching band tattoos before starting the band. “We’ve always had the attitude that our band could take over the fucking world … Even if we didn’t know how it was going to happen,” Monks told Noisey in 2014. When Dilly Dally finally came together (with drummer Benjamin Reinhartz and bassist Jimmy Tony), that act-first, think-later mentality defined their blazing, hard rock sound. Their debut, Sore, was a runaway train of screeching, distortion and electric instruments that, in some gentler indie circles, sounded plain insane. It also made them a must-hear band right out of the gate. But in the face of success, the young band nearly imploded before they could even think about a second album.
If Sore was their Appetite for Destruction, then Heaven is their Use Your Illusion I. It’s got all the scorched-earth volatility of its predecessor, but here, the appeal is paradoxically in its more vulnerable moments. “Doom” is one of those. Monks sat down to write Heaven resigned to the fact that her band – her dream – was probably over. “I had to distance myself from whatever Dilly Dally had become, so that I could foster a new spark to get that energy back again – because it was gone,” she told Rolling Stone. She bought a new fuck-you ax (a pearly white Jackson flying V guitar) out of which came a power ballad, a hero’s salute, Dilly Dally’s very own “Dream On.” What aligns “Doom” with all those great classic rock anthems is that Monks recommits to the struggle – “Remember who you are/And where you’re gonna be” she sings – while she’s still in the crosshairs of Helm’s Deep. “Doom” raises the stakes with a tribalistic drum, a hiss and a flatlining guitar. It all coalesces dramatically. It’s heavy, it’s hopeful, it’s raw. Most importantly, it’s the sound of a band reveling in the fight just to be here at all.