!! Q&A !!

!! OMG, a Q&A with Izzy Spears !!

Izzy Spears by Erika Kamano

Photo by Erika Kamano

Izzy Spears is coming for you and he has no intentions of making you comfortable about it.

After moving to New York from Atlanta, the musician (who also works in fashion) met Shane Oliver—the visionary behind NYC subcultural tsunamis such as GHE20 G0TH1K, from which later emerged his fashion movement Hood by Air.

Their burgeoning friendship solidified Spears’ intent to release music as a solo artist, after an onslaught of collaborations with Oliver and the HBA crew, who recently created yet another conceptually driven art and music collective called Anonymous Club—an amorphous creative community that finds Oliver championing young like-minded artists from a multitude of creative backgrounds.

Izzy became central to this scene, featuring on lead singles such as “Bleeding Out” on their debut drop Screensavers Vol. 1 in 2021.

Izzy Spears Monster coverFollowing short-lived creative jaunts with shitty ex-boyfriends, and the all-consuming umbrella of Anonymous Club, 2022 sees Izzy stepping out solo with a series of confrontational singles and videos and an upcoming EP, aptly entitled MONSTER, dropping early November.

We talked to the restless, rambunctious not-rapper about finding a creative community while maintaining an uncompromisingly distinct vision that aims to creatively pollinate with shameless [email protected], though with clear determination to exterminate what he sees as normalcy in gay culture.

Read the full Q&A after the jump!


!! OMG, a Q&A with Boy Harsher !!

Boy Harsher - Photo by Jordan Hemingway

Photo by Jordan Hemingway

We got in touch with Jae Matthews and Gus Muller of the moody duo Boy Harsher at their home in Northampton, Massachusetts while they caught a breath from relentlessly touring. The region also provides the setting for the majority of their most recent project, body-horror film The Runner, released this past January along with an accompanying original soundtrack.

The film follows a woman with carnal, violent instincts as she navigates the treacherous, emotional, wooded terrain surrounding the band’s home turf, and is based around characters that the band has been exploring in various elements of their work for years now.

Boy Harsher has conquered major hurdles in order to see The Runner into the world. Just as the pandemic closed in, Jae was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, leaving her partner Gus to creatively explore how their band might look or sound when the two couldn’t work together.

Perhaps The Runner represents an overdue pause for the band who, since their inception in 2015, have had a non-stop approach to playing live in support of their albums, and they have the growing fan base to prove it.

We talked with the duo about the emotional depths and challenges they had to navigate to complete the film and album, how they resulted in the fog-drenched frames of The Runner, how horror is more terrifying when the threat lies within, and the perils of independent filmmaking.

Read the full Q&A after the jump!


!! OMG, a Q&A with Mic. Carter of L’Uomo Strano !!

L'Uomo Strano Spring/Summer 2022

Left: Mic. Carter wearing L’Uomo Strano Spring/Summer 2022 | Right: The same look on the runway at Fashion Art Toronto

The name of designer Mic. Carter’s label might be L’Uomo Strano (which translates to ‘the strange man’ in Italian), but the Toronto-based creative’s catalogue of wearable delights is everything but off. In fact, Carter’s assemblage is a perfect synthesis of the times we’re living in, where optimism and angst rub up against one another on the daily. Throughout the pandemic, Carter kept busy crafting red carpet looks for the likes of Bilal Baig and Olunike Adeliyi, and dressing Vivek Shraya and Tynomie Banks, all while also producing seasonal offerings and displaying them with abundant drama during virtual versions of Fashion Art Toronto (“FAT”).

Carter’s current collection “Open Haus” debuted at FAT’s return to the real-life runway this past May; but it wasn’t the only the only recent opportunity for Carter to have pieces meant for public consumption on show. They also created the costuming for dancer Devon Snell as part of the collaborative artistic exploration staged by Toronto Dance Theatre called Performance Clash. And last week, Carter’s designs were worn by legendary choreographer Hollywood Jade on Canada’s Drag Race.

Hollywood Jade wearing L’Uomo Strano on Canada’s Drag Race

Having interviewed Carter during one of the city’s many lockdowns, I was eager to catch up with the fashion designer and educator (for both grade school and university students) and hear more about what influenced “Open Haus,” what it was like going back to the catwalk, and what utopia means to them.

Read the full Q&A after the jump!


!! OMG, a Q&A with author Derek McCormack !!

Derek McCormack photographed by Christopher Paulin

Derek McCormack photographed by Christopher Paulin

The first lines of the Author’s Note in Derek McCormack’s new book Judy Blame’s Obituary: Writings on Fashion and Death state simply:

“Fagginness is what I write about. I focus on things that fags love: fashion and death. Think about it: all fags wear fashions—I’m wearing some! And all fags love death—I’m dying!”

In 2012, McCormack was diagnosed with cancer, and given five years to live. Ten years later, he has released a collection of essays, spanning his career and focusing of his work in fashion, and ruminations on death—two subjects which seamlessly intermingle in McCormack’s world.

Published by Pilot Press, a young, independent publisher based in London, UK,  Judy Blame’s Obituary marks McCormack’s thirteenth published book since his first in 1996. Its title refers back to an obituary McCormack wrote—originally appearing in Artforumfor the legendary UK-based designer, stylist and fashion icon Judy Blame. Blame passed away tragically in 2018, leaving an immense cavity in the world of British fashion, after serving as a source of vital inspiration to the author and creative people internationally.

McCormack credits the torment of growing up as a young homosexual in a rural Northern Ontario town as the driving force behind his work. The disgust directed at him by the general public is a two-way street. In his work, he documents the palpable disdain directed towards him by normals, jocks and filthy heterosexuals—a disdain he continues to gleefully savour in his often confrontational, yet consistently humorous work.

Judy Blame's Obituary: Writings on Fashion and Death by Derek McCormackThe new book steps away format-wise from his novels of late, such as 2015’s The Well Dressed Wound, and most recently, the concept-heavy, scatological sick-fest that is 2020’s Castle Faggot, both via avant-academic American publisher Semiotext(e).

McCormack’s books unfold like the mirror mazes he describes encountering on the fairgrounds of his youth: warped, horrific and hilarious.

His world is populated by glamorous ghouls, fanged fashionistas, and of course, haunted hillbillies. In this world, Dracula, a life-long love and frequent character in McCormack’s work, somehow comfortably inhabits the same space as the ghost of country legend Hank Williams.

McCormack’s preoccupation with death may come off as macabre, which of course it is, but his delivery of all things deadly is a type of sinister slapstick, filled with wordplay and vaudevillian folly. He’s the goth haunting the halls of the old school.

Judy Blame’s Obituary serves as a totem to the writer’s history not only in regards to his work, but forms an inadvertent autobiographical portrait of the author himself.

We sat down to chat with McCormack about how the book came together, and how it feels to unexpectedly and simultaneously mourn and celebrate his work up until now.

Read the full Q&A after the jump!


!! OMG, a Q&A with Johnny Marr !!

Johnny MarrWhat do you ask a “guitar god”? This was my first thought when I was recently asked to interview Johnny Marr.

“Johnny is literally the best, and he doesn’t mind talking about his time in The Smiths, or his relationship with Morrissey, but please try not to dwell on it,” warned Marr’s publicist in advance of our chat.

Marr’s early days as the guitarist and songwriter in the seminal, foppish (read: gayish) ’80s indie band The Smiths, and the subsequent fall-out with frontman Morrissey nearly eclipsed his career, and I vowed not be the type to broach the subject.

Despite the undeniable impact of being one half of one of the greatest songwriting partnerships of all time, Marr’s career following his time in The Smiths has been far from dismissible. Before endeavouring an official solo career in the early 2000s with his band The Healers, and a brief stint as a member of The Pretenders, Marr was involved with projects like the indie-dance super-duo Electronic with New Order’s Bernard Sumner. His covetable versatility as a musician led to pop-leaning collaborations with the likes of Pet Shop Boys, Talking Heads and The The.

A longstanding working relationship with the legendary film composer Hans Zimmer lead to what might be Marr’s most unexpected partnership yet, a collaboration with Gen-Z poster girl Billie Eilish. Marr worked closely with Zimmer on the score to 2021’s No Time To Die, which included Eilish’s theme song to the film.

Johnny Marr FEVER DREAMS PTS 1-4 ALBUM ARTWORKMarr’s official solo third album, Fever Dreams Part 1–4 (pre-order the album here), is already garnering critical praise in advance of its February release. The conceptually forward record has been released in four parts—3 EPs culminating in a full-length record, and finds Marr leaning into newfound territory as a songwriter.

I was excited to speak with him about the record, and seconds before an affable, and candid Marr joined me on video chat from his studio in London, I realized that in the top corner of my frame was a limited edition box set of The Smiths complete biography—a rather deep collector cut if I do say so myself—and it seemed my intentions to stick to paths less-Smithsy were defeated before we even got out of the gate.

But as his publicist suggested, Johnny remained chatty and bright on the subject and dug right into some juicy behind the scenes details on the album’s art work. We managed to move swiftly beyond the past and talk about the lofty intentions for his new record and some highlights from his storied and thriving career.

Read the full Q&A with Johnny Marr after the jump!


!! OMG, a Q&A with Bruce LaBruce (2021) !!

Bruce LaBruce portraitBruce LaBruce has been at the forefront of Queer underground art and cinema since he started making short films in 1987. After releasing two feature films, he secured his status as a cult icon and adjacent to peers such as Richard Kern, Kembra Pfahler and NYCs Cinema of Transgression.

However, it was LaBruce’s 1996 film Hustler White that brought him universal acclaim and a notorious reputation as a shit-disturber of the status quo. The noteriety found him positioned amongst the likes of Todd Haynes, Gus Van Sant, Gregg Araki and the so-called New Queer Cinema movement. It also landed him a curse cast on him by the witchy queer film forefather Kenneth Anger for referencing him in the film.

Labruce has since forayed into work as a highly regarded writer, photographer, and reluctantly (as the title of his 1997 memoir would have you believe) pornography.

Félix-Antoine Duval in Saint-Narcisse

Since his debut feature, 1991’s No Skin Off My Ass, LaBruce has helmed thirteen feature films and as many or more shorts films. However transgressive LaBruce’s work may be, there’s a sentimentality and tenderness that runs through his narratives, just as tangibly as his punk inclinations do, creating a sensibility that can only be referred to as LaBrucian.

Emerging from Toronto’s 1980s punk scene, LaBruce gained initial notoriety and cult-god status with his pioneering queer punk zine J.D.s — a collaborative effort with artist and filmmaker G.B. Jones. The zine was a confrontational and exploitation response to the homophobia the two had encountered in the punk scene, and snowballed into a web of freaks and outsider gays across North America and beyond, eventually being dubbed the “Queercore” movement.

Despite its subversive origins, the legend of Queercore and J.D.s has since been been exploited into quasi-mainstream status, as seen in such recent articles in Teen Vogue, and even being hilariously, yet disastrously referenced by major fashion houses such as Gucci.

A still from Saint-Narcisse by Bruce LaBruce

Félix-Antoine Duval with himself in Saint-Narcisse

While still making the rounds in the festival circuit, his thirteenth feature film, Saint-Narcisse, was released to critical acclaim at The Venice Film Festival in a brief window between COVID lockdowns in 2020. The reliably scandalous film is being referred to as his “opus” and is finally reaching audiences via theatrical runs in Toronto, Vancouver and more to come, after being held over for weeks at the Quad Cinema in New York City.

The story of Saint-Narcisse centers around a brother’s quest to uncover the dark truths about his family’s past, and finds him in an erotic tryst with the twin brother he didn’t know existed. The film blends LaBruce’s inclination to find believable and affecting relationships between unconventional characters with his seemingly insatiable urge to disrupt.

The last time OMG.BLOG spoke to Bruce was in 2008. This time around, we talked with him about the influences behind his most recent film, his storied career, and why we shouldn’t expect him to go PG anytime soon, despite his best efforts.

Read the full Q&A and watch the trailer for Saint-Narcisse after the jump!


!! OMG, a Q&A with Dita Von Teese !!

Dita Von Teese by Albert Sanchez

Photo by Albert Sanchez

We are thrilled to share our conversation with legendary burlesque star and pin-up model Dita Von Teese.

Her upcoming show, Night of the Teese – A Cinematic Special, filmed at the illustrious Orpheum Theatre in downtown Los Angeles during the pandemic, will be streaming for one weekend only Friday October 1st – Sunday October 3rd, featuring an all-star cast of friends and collaborators that the reigning Queen of Burlesque has worked with during her 30-plus-year career, in addition to some exciting new talent.

Von Teese connected with director Quinn Wilson, a queer rising star who also happens to be Lizzo’s creative director, to create a one-of-a-kind intimate experience that captures the unique vision and energies of her hand-picked performers. With a sharp focus on presenting the best of the best in burlesque, the work spans the gender spectrum while celebrating intergenerational bodies, backgrounds, and performance styles.


It’s a much needed return to magic, glitz and glam after almost two years when the closest thing for most of us to a scintillating experience was not having to wear bottoms to a staff meeting.

In addition to the long overdue streaming experience, Von Teese has just arrived in Paris to begin her stint as a contestant on Dancing With The Stars.

We caught up with the down-to-earth diva about how that particular experience may not be going quite to plan, her humble beginnings,  as well as what she’s learned — and taught — in her fabulously flashy decades-long career as a glamour girl or, as she’d say, a “fancy pants stripper”!

Read the full Q&A with Dita Von Teese after the jump!


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