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Dump Babes Show Their True Colours With “Citronette” 

The prairie psych-pop outfit hurry hard in their new and very Canadian music video.

by Stephan Boissonneault 

Photo by Laura Lynn Petrick

Feeling somewhere between a whimsical Coen brothers sports movie and something from the iconic Slapshot films, Dump Babes’ new music video, “Citronette,” follows the band facing off in a curling tournament against other Saskatchewan musical acts — The Garrys, 3Moonjask, and Chesterfield — all while gloomy psych pop fills the room.

The members of Dump Babes arrive in a joint smoke-filled van, decked out in citronette-coloured hoodies, at The Langham Curling Club before heading on the ice to compete. The tournament seems like a friendly rivalry between bands, and it looks a bit surreal, especially with 3Moonjask wearing their trademark clouds on their heads — that is, until the true “villains” of the video, Chesterfield, show up.

The colour coordination in this video is spectacular; from the the rocks and scoreboards matching each band’s colour tones to the darkened disco montage and hazy fluorescent lighting of the curling club. The video is quintessentially Canadian, and something that guitarist/vocalist Aurora Wolfe has been wanting to make for a long time.

Growing up in the small prairie town of Mortlach, SK, curling was huge in her hometown, right next to hockey. “​​It’s not as fast or crazy as other sports, so it can be an underdog in terms of its entertainment factor,” she says. “I thought it would be hilarious to have it as the premise of this super-driving psych-rock song.”

“Citronette” is the first track off of Dump Babes’ upcoming album, Known Liar, which at its heart is “an album about grief, the ways that we navigate death, and the ripples of change (both negative and positive) that it causes within our communities.” Wolfe goes further and says the album is a “love letter” to and a reflection on Dump Babes’ founding member, bassist Jill Mack, who sadly passed from cancer. 

We spoke with Wolfe about the behind-the-scenes filming of “Citronette” and learned what it takes to plan and play music for a proper Bonspiel. 

Were the members of Dump Babes already curling pros before “Citronette”?

Dump Babes has a wide range of curling abilities, ranging from newbies to seasoned veterans. Although, a little practice and a whole lot of movie magic definitely help us come off as more skilled than we are in reality.

My favourite part of the video is when a guy from Chesterfield comes and takes a bite out of one Dump Babes member’s food before the match. Was this scripted? 

The burger bite is a favourite moment for all of us! That was the brainchild of our production designer/coordinator Levi Mireau, and Eric from Chesterfield definitely made it come to life. It was almost impossible to keep a straight face when we were shooting that part because Chesterfield shocked us all with their incredible villain acting. We also ordered a takeout burger for that scene and when we brought it back to set we realized that the restaurant had forgotten the burger patty so Eric kept taking these huge bites of just a straight hamburger bun. 

Was there a full script for each band, or was it just lots of curling montage shots and goofing around?

We had a basic outline for the video, and then Myriad Entertainment helped us flesh it out so it wasn’t just five minutes of questionable curling. Halfway through the day we had been shooting only curling shots, getting really cold in the rink, and getting a little hangry. I had a moment of panic thinking ”Is this going to be the world’s most boring music video?” Luckily after some pizza and watching 3Moonjask squatting curling rocks, we regained our confidence in the idea.

Why citronette? What is it about this shade of chartreuse that warranted a song? 

I wrote the song ”Citronette” after painting my office Shrek green last summer. It was very much a ‘trust the process’ project after I decided to paint the ceiling as well. The entire time I was working on it I was like ”Am I crazy? Is this colour too intense?” and it became this hyper-fixation for me. I also thought that the name of the paint ”Citronette” sounded so delicate in comparison to this electric green it represented, and I couldn’t stop laughing about how funny that was. For me the song is about occupying yourself with tasks to keep from processing some maybe not-so-fun feelings — like grief. I started to think about how people always say ”Vincent Van Gogh ate yellow paint because he thought it would make him happy.” Still, in reality, he was just mentally ill and processing his feelings in unhealthy ways. While painting a room isn’t as detrimental to my well-being as consuming lead-based pigments, it’s not exactly taking my ghosts head on. 

So going off that, the line “bathe me in citronette” is a metaphor for something?

Yeah. The line “Bathe me in Citronette” is a metaphor for finding something to distract you from your anxieties, and the very real repercussions of painting your ceiling. I was picking green paint out of my hair for weeks post-office reno.



What can you tell me about the upcoming LP, Known Liar? It’s kind of a eulogy and in memoriam to your late bass player, Jill?

Our upcoming LP Known Liar is less of a eulogy for Jill and more of a love letter. I didn’t write any songs for a long time after Jill passed because it was really sad to think about playing them without her, and I wanted to fulfill this promise I had made to the band pre-diagnosis of writing a “fun pop album.” But I had to come to terms with the fact that things change, sometimes drastically, and once I started allowing myself the space to let go of my preconceptions of what this album was going to be, I was able to pull myself out of that writing limbo and start taking baby steps back into the band. The first song that I wrote was “Bitter,” which was just me admitting how angry I was feeling at the world, but after I had finished it I was able to move away from that feeling easier. Every song got a little lighter as we went along and we ended with the titular track “Known Liar,” which (in my opinion) brings it back full circle to that ”fun pop album” we originally planned for. 

You guys are the losers of the tournament in the video but you still celebrate with champagne. Why?

Because we are excellent losers! Also, we aren’t the kind of folks to waste 12 dollar ”champagne.”