NYC rockers DIIV hit Part Time Punks at The Echo last Sunday night with something fierce. San Francisco trio Melted Toys opened the evening’s set with an eclectic drum machine, two guitars and bass collective. Melted Toys’ mix had a clean mud to it, like a cleaner toned take on some ‘gaze favorites like My Bloody Valentine; indiscernible lyrics juxtaposed to discernible melodies.
The appropriately named, Part Time, also from SF, next filled the venue. The band had a new wave karaoke nostalgia in their style pop. The pretty feverish rhythm section held the backbone to some sickly psychedelic guitar licks and fronted vocals. Cue up your next Miami Vice rerun.
DIIV took stage and got on immediately with their signature instrumental banter. For those unfamiliar, the band’s debut LP titled Oshin is something of a fresh perspective on decades of energy influenced rock music. Any recollections of grunge that come to mind were only reaffirmed when crowd surfers took to flight in the 200+ capacity venue. Frontman Cole Smith at one point asked the crowd how the sound was? “more snare” “more guitar” people said, which Cole then relayed to the soundguy. This of course, not only is one way to piss off most sound-dudes (sound was great that night) but it more so gave the rock show that proper non-chalant fuck-itness.
The baggy-hipster-clad four plowed straight through their boppy, melody guitar-weaved set. DIIV songs keep the vocals to a minimum which seems to play to and against their favor at times, especially when it comes to a crowd of onlookers. The sort of minor detail that is the obvious wall that’s always separating like bands like from a alt-FM standard for the shuffles of the future. Other notable sounds like the ringing delay of guitars seem to now have an eternal viability to the masses (hat-tip’Edge). The band’s long hair and foppish aesthetics aside, you totally would have wanted to hear DIIV come out of the underground in the 80s.
The band at one point mumbled something about “Smells Like Teen Spirit” between songs as they took sips from their tallboy cans of PBR (with the 6-pack plastic rigns still attached to the can). It was all not so really but really. DIIV wrapped their 30 minute set with “Bambi Slaughter” which seemed only appropriate. Catch DIIV on tour and pick up one of the year’s best full-length collections Oshin.
Reviewed by b3