RFE2022 • THE OBGMs (Toronto, ON)

8:35PM • SUNDAY, AUGUST 21 • GRASSLANDS STAGE

That’s vocalist/guitarist Densil McFarlane talking about his band the OBGMs and their new album, The Ends. If he sounds like a man who doesn’t lack confidence, that’s because he doesn’t. “The whole album is about not being bashful and just going out and getting it,” he says. “A lot of people who do music sink into self-deprecation, but we’re comfortable telling people how we feel about ourselves—good and bad—and the good is: I don’t think there’s a band that does what we do on a record.”
If there’s something crucial beyond the music, it’s that the OBGMs—rounded out by drummer Colanthony Humphrey and bassist Joseph Brosnan—aren’t your typical rock band. “This is a black-fronted punk band, and that’s really important,” McFarlane says. “Rock n’ roll is mostly white suburban kids—that’s what gets promoted. But we are black and we out here. I was inspired to make rock music when I saw a black guy onstage, and if someone sees that in us, I hope it will inspire a new generation to go after this.”
Behind his confidence, the title The Ends reflects a dark period in McFarlane’s life—one that almost ended the band. Back in February of 2018, at the end of the OBGMs (that’s The oOoh Baby Gimme Mores) last tour, McFarlane was ready to pull the plug on the whole operation. “I thought it was over,” he says. “I thought me and music was over. My life wasn’t very good at the time, people around me were dying, and everything I was making sucked. I thought it was a sign that I needed to do something else.”

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