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DIIV at The Gothic
DIIV in 2015.
Background information
Also known as Dive
Origin New York City, New York, U.S.
Genres Indie rock, dream pop, shoegaze
Years active 2011–present
Labels Captured Tracks
Associated acts Beach Fossils, Smith Westerns, Soft Black, Darwin Deez
Website www.diiv.net
Past members
  • Colby Hewitt

DIIV are an American rock band from Brooklyn, New York City, formed in 2011. The band consists of Zachary Cole Smith (vocals, guitar), Andrew Bailey (guitar), Devin Ruben Perez (bass), Colin Caulfield (keyboards, guitar) and Ben Newman (drums).

Initially called Dive, the band started as Smith's solo recording project. After releasing three singles - "Sometime", "Human" and "Geist" - on Captured Tracks, DIIV released its debut full-length album, Oshin, on June 26, 2012.

In 2016, the band released its second studio album, Is the Is Are, after a lengthy and troubled gestation period.


Oshin (2011–2013)[edit]

Zachary Cole Smith (former touring guitarist of Soft Black,[1] Darwin Deez,[2] and Beach Fossils) started a solo project in 2011. Smith, who originally named the project Dive after the Nirvana song of the same name,[3] put together a live band that included guitarist and childhood friend Andrew Bailey (like Smith, from Connecticut), bassist Devin Ruben Perez (from New York City), and drummer Colby Hewitt (from California and formerly of Smith Westerns). Smith explained to Pitchfork that "everybody in the band is a water sign, that's kind of why the name Dive really spoke to us all."[4]

Captured Tracks signed the band and released two singles, "Sometime" and "Human", which were recorded solely by Smith and had acted as demos.[5] In May 2012, the band changed their name to DIIV, according to Smith, "out of respect for Dirk Ivens and the original Dive," a 1990s Belgian industrial group.[6] "We’ve not been contacted by Dirk Ivens or his lawyers," Smith said in a press release, "but the short of it is that I don’t really give a fuck what the band is called." He continued, "I originated this project in a bedroom with no Internet and didn’t know if it would ever leave the bedroom. 'DIVE', the word, was an element of what inspired the project in its genesis, but we’ve outgrown the name and its associations. The band is the same, the music is the same, the future will always be the same. A name is nothing."[3][7]

DIIV's debut album, Oshin, was released on June 26, 2012.[8][9] It was preceded by the single "Geist" in April 2012 and the music video for "How Long Have You Known" in May 2012.[10][11][12] The songs on Oshin were influenced by krautrock,C86 bands, Nirvana and world music. "People didn’t seem to pick up on the influence of these Malian guitar players, especially Baba Salah whose record I got at the library," Smith said. "He's a huge star in Mali, but he has this one record called Borey and it was huge for me and influenced the way I experimented with melody."[13]

DIIV supported English band The Vaccines on their UK tour during November 2012. DIIV also supported the Canadian duo Japandroids on their East Coast US tour in November–December 2012.

On lists of the top 50 albums of 2012, Oshin was listed 22nd by Stereogum and 40th by Pitchfork.[14]

Is the Is Are (2014–present)[edit]

While touring in support of Oshin, DIIV played several unreleased songs live, including "Dust", "Loose Ends" and "Under the Sun".[15] As of July 2014, Smith had written over 150 new songs since the release of Oshin.[16]

On March 9, 2015, DIIV began recording their second album, Is the Is Are, at Strange Weather Recording Studio in Brooklyn.

Drummer Colby Hewitt left the band in spring 2015 due to his rumored drug addiction.[17] Ben Newman, (from North Carolina, formerly of Banda Suki) who played on several "Oshin" tracks including "Doused" (credited as Ben Wolf) was added as the group's touring drummer in 2015, and played on a bulk of Is the Is Are.

On September 16, 2015, DIIV released the first single from Is the Is Are, "Dopamine".[18][19] They shared a second song from the album, "Bent (Roi's Song)", on November 4, 2015,[20] followed by "Mire (Grant's Song)" on November 25.[21] "Under the Sun" was released as a single on December 13.[22]

Is the Is Are was released on February 5, 2016. The release was followed by a February tour in Australia as part of St Jerome's Laneway Festival.[23]

Band members[edit]

Current members
  • Zachary Cole Smith – lead vocals, guitar (2011–present)
  • Andrew Bailey – guitar (2011–present)
  • Devin Ruben Perez – bass guitar (2011–present)
  • Colin Caulfield – keyboards, guitar, backing vocals (2013–present)
  • Ben Newman – drums (2015–present)
Former members
  • Colby Hewitt – drums (2011–2015)


DIIV in 2012
Studio albums
  • "Sometime" (2011)
  • "Human" (2011)
  • "Geist" (2012)
  • "Dopamine" (2015)
  • "Bent (Roi's Song)" (2015)
  • "Under the Sun" (2015)
  • "Is the Is Are" (2016)


  1. ^ "Entertainment – Metro". Metro.us. Retrieved 2015-09-25. 
  2. ^ http://darwindeez.com/sxsw-part-1-lowered-expectations-andrew/
  3. ^ a b Pelly, Jenn (2012-05-01). "Dive Change Name to DIIV, Share New Single". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  4. ^ Minsker, Evan (2012-04-05). "Rising: Dive". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  5. ^ Higgins, Reese (2012-03-06). "Dive Goes Deep: A Chat With Zachary Cole Smith". Washington City Paper. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  6. ^ Zeichner, Naomi (2012-05-01). "Stream DIIV, "Doused"". The Fader. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  7. ^ Sullivan, Maria (2012-05-02). "Dive Changes Name To DIIV, Shares New Song "Doused"". CMJ. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  8. ^ Adams, Gregory (2012-04-05). "Beach Fossils Offshoot Dive Deliver Debut LP". Exclaim!. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  9. ^ Joyce, Colin (2012-04-30). "Track Review: Dive - "How Long Have You Known" / "Bambi Slaughter"". Beats Per Minute. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  10. ^ Fitzmaurice, Larry (2012-03-09). "Reviews – Tracks – Dive - "Geist"". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  11. ^ Murray, Robin (2012-05-29). "DIIV Outline European Shows". Clash. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  12. ^ Darville, Jordan (2012-05-24). "DIIV – "How Long Have You Known?"". ChartAttack. Retrieved 2012-06-02. 
  13. ^ Rathe, Adam (2012-07-05). "Diiv’s Master Plan Backfires". MTV. Retrieved 2012-07-06. 
  14. ^ Stereogum’s Top 50 Albums Of 2012 - Stereogum
  15. ^ Tout, Alicia (2015-09-08). "Gimme Your Answers: An Interview w/ DIIV". A Music Blog Yea. Retrieved 2015-09-09. 
  16. ^ DeVille, Chris (2014-07-28). "How Does It Feel: DIIV's Zachary Cole Smith Rolls On". Stereogum. Retrieved 2015-03-14. 
  17. ^ McDermott, Patrick D. (August 11, 2015). "What Happened To DIIV?". The Fader. Retrieved August 14, 2015. 
  18. ^ Minsker, Evan (September 16, 2015). "DIIV Drop New Single "Dopamine"". Pitchfork. Retrieved September 16, 2015. 
  19. ^ Coughlan, Jamie. "DIIV Share New Track 'Dopamine'". Overblown Webzine. Retrieved 23 September 2015. 
  20. ^ "DIIV have just announced new album 'Is The Is Are'". Never Enough Notes. Never Enough Notes. November 4, 2015. Retrieved 4 November 2015. 
  21. ^ "DIIV share new track ‘Mire (Grant’s Song)’ from upcoming second album ‘The Is The Are’". Never Enough Notes. 25 November 2015. Retrieved 25 November 2015. 
  22. ^ Moreland, Quinn (December 14, 2015). "DIIV - "Under the Sun"". Pitchfork. Retrieved December 14, 2015. 
  23. ^ http://musicfeeds.com.au/news/laneway-festival-2016-lineup-announced/

External links[edit]