Bringing sex out of the closet

The Dirrty Show’s been on a shameless mission to puncture stigmas about sex through explicit music and “double R-rated” comedy.

The Dirrty Show’s been on a shameless mission to puncture stigmas about sex through explicit music and “double R-rated” comedy.

Judging by some of the public reaction to the poster for the new album, Cream, Kayla Williams and Melody Stang still have a long way to go.

In the controversial image, the Red Deer-area singers are captured from their bare shoulders up, showing a bit of cleavage, while two upward sprays of milk are aimed at their emotive faces.

Some merchants were so taken aback they didn’t want to display this poster for the duo’s CD release party on March 5, at the Scott Block in their stores.

But Stang wonders what’s the big deal? Larger-than-life, sexualized pictures of nearly nude models have been prominently shown at the entrance of a mall lingerie store. By comparison, The Dirrty Show photo barely shows any body parts and Williams and Stang’s facial expressions reveal they are clearly in on the joke.

There’s a sense of parody and “everyday sexuality” in the pose — but maybe that’s the problem, said Stang. “If it’s a model, it’s OK, but if it’s two local women, there’s a backlash …”

Stang and Williams enjoy pushing boundaries to try to bring hidden human activities out into the open. While they don’t see themselves as sexual educators or advisers, the women are strong advocates of open sexual communication.

It’s like a new Alberta Health ad states: “If you don’t talk about sex with your kids, who will?” said Stang.

Topics of discussion can be gleaned from the titles of new tunes from Cream, such as Morning Wood, 53X (Sex), and Man Buns. (The latter is the least explicit song in The Dirrty Show’s repertoire, said Williams. It’s about men — usually bearded men — who put their hair up in buns.)

Other selections from the new album, recorded at Red Deer’s The Space studio by Heath West of Melodious Designs Co., are as bluntly sexual as fans of The Dirrty Show have come to expect.

You can always count on Stang and Williams to mention the unmentionables.

Even when a tune is not profane, it has strong adult themes, said Williams — who noted mainstream radio won’t play the first single, Morning Wood (about erections) because the context is seen as “crossing the boundaries.” But Stang and Williams hope it’s picked up by college radio stations.

The women are planning to add a new theatrical element to their live show at the Scott Block that was inspired by their 2015 trip to Australia. While at the Melbourne Comedy Festival, Stang and Williams noticed short sketches and improvisations were part of many musical acts.

Upon returning to Canada, they developed over-the-top alter-egos based on exaggerated aspects of their own personalities. Stang’s character is described as a “superhero lesbian,” while Williams’ is a rubber-legged dancer who’s more bizarre than provocative. “It’s not sexy,” said Williams, with a chuckle.

“She has noodle legs,” added Stang.

The show will include appearances by Bull Skit cast members as well as special guest musicians.

The duo developed a theme of female empowerment while touring in Alberta and British Columbia late last year. This will fuel a new fringe act called Flaps of Steel (the female equivalent of cajones) that Stang and Williams are writing to perform at festivals in Edmonton, Calgary and Winnipeg this summer.

Cream is available at the show at the Scott Block, and also from CDBaby.com. Tickets to the 9 p.m. show (presented by Bull Skit) are $12 in advance from bullskitcomedy.tixato.com or $15 at the door.

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

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