The Dirty Rooks have earned a reputation for being one of the best live rock n' roll bands in Chicago. Reviews of the band regularly talk about their "bombastic party sound," call their live shows "enthusiastic [and] blood-alcohol-raising," and tell their readers to "pound a cheap beer (or five) and steady yourself". They've packed Chicago's finest music venues, including Lincoln Hall, The Double Door, Martyr's, The Abbey Pub, and Beat Kitchen with fans hungry for their "party on stage" brand of rock n' roll. They've also opened for national acts The Waco Brothers and Jon Langford, Steepwater Band, Lez Zeppelin, Vintage, Jonathan Tyler & the Northern Lights, and Tin Horse. As their reputation for raucous performances continues to grow, so does their fanbase; The Dirty Rooks have sold albums around the country and internationally.
In late 2009 The Dirty Rooks set out to capture the energy of their live shows in a new album. Sugar Mama, released February of 2010, has accomplished that goal. Ben Rubenstein of Centerstage wrote about the album"…you get the sense that these songs are meant to be played live at a party of some sort" and the A.V. Club wrote in The Onion that The Dirty Rooks, "rouse [listeners] to buy another pitcher...bands like this belong cramped up on the stage, not confined to an iPod," Their February album release concert was a Centerstage "Editor's Pick" and was featured in the Red Eye as one of Metromix's top Chicago concerts in February.
The group's first, self-titled, album (2007) is evidence that this booze-rock element has been there since early on. Newcity's Tom Lynch, "The Dirty Rooks burrow themselves underneath your nails, along with the dirt and scum and filth of the city streets. And they're good...rock 'n' roll hasn't been this drunk in a while." The band was just getting started but were already defining a specific genre and doing it well. "[The album] has a pure, classic rock sound with some blues influence... it immediately spins off aromas of cigarette smoke and bad plumbing from some low-lit Southside bar” (Dan Ocwhat, Music Editor of The Real Chicago); "[The Dirty Rooks] move the [blues rock] genre forward and deliver exciting music that spans decades and styles" (TAXI); "most satisfying is the sound of the blues in young hands that, rather than treating the music as a museum piece, twist it to fit the moment." (Mike O'Cull, Illinois Entertainer)
Whether they're on stage or in the studio, The Dirty Rooks are creating a sound that's resonating with listeners and giving them a soundtrack to party to.