Diamond Rings Battles Cheap Hairspray at New York Show
Assuming the crowd on hand to see John O'Regan, aka Diamond Rings, perform Monday night at New York City's Mercury Lounge was representative of the greater US population, about 91 of the 100 or so people in attendance were employed and had to work in the morning. To these folks, O'Regan offered some reassurance.
"This will be over soon and you can go to bed," the lanky, glammed-out Canadian synth-pop up-and-comer said. He had a different message for the nine unemployed fans statistics suggest were among those grooving to his laptop beats, power chords and one-handed keyboard riffs.
"Show me where to go," O'Regan said, confessing his lack of familiarity with the local nightlife. "Let's have a party!"
Regardless of whether he went out after the show -- which, true to his word, ended around 9PM -- and hit the bars with job-seeking members of his audience, O'Regan had himself an evening's worth of fun. Dressed in a black motorcycle jacket, gold leggings, red high-top basketball sneakers and a single fingerless leather glove, the former high school athlete danced hard enough to compensate for fans' surprising lack of motion.
Playing songs from his recently released debut, 'Special Affections,' he shook his hips and pumped his fist as if auditioning for the lead in a dinner-theater production of 'The Billy Idol Story.'
When not singing over purely prerecorded music, O'Regan switched between keyboard and guitar, the instrument he plays in the D'Urbervilles, the post-punk band he's fronted since 2005. Rocking the Telecaster on 'Wait & See,' he referenced no fewer than three music icons, singing like a lounge-lizard Ian Curtis and looking like 'Faith'-era George