|Origin||New York City, New York, US|
DIIV is an American rock band from Brooklyn, New York City, formed in 2011. The band consists of Zachary Cole Smith (vocals, guitar), Andrew Bailey (guitar), Colin Caulfield (bass, keyboards, guitar, vocals) 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 studio album, Oshin, on June 26, 2012.
Zachary Cole Smith (former touring guitarist of Soft Black and Darwin Deez and drummer for Beach Fossils) started a solo project in 2011. Smith, who originally named the project Dive after the Nirvana song of the same name, 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."
Captured Tracks signed the band and released two singles, "Sometime" and "Human", which were recorded solely by Smith and had acted as demos. 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. "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."
DIIV's debut album, Oshin, was released on June 26, 2012. It was preceded by the single "Geist" in April 2012 and the music video for "How Long Have You Known" in May 2012. 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."
In July 2013, multi-instrumentalist Colin Caulfield joined the band. Caulfield plays keyboard and guitar in live shows.
While touring in support of Oshin, DIIV played several unreleased songs live, including "Dust", "Loose Ends" and "Under the Sun". As of July 2014, Smith had written over 150 new songs since the release of Oshin.
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. 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 drummer in April 2015, and played on the bulk of Is the Is Are.
On September 16, 2015, DIIV released the first single from Is the Is Are, "Dopamine". They shared a second song from the album, "Bent (Roi's Song)", on November 4, 2015, followed by "Mire (Grant's Song)" on November 25. "Under the Sun" was released as a single on December 13.
Is the Is Are was released on February 5, 2016. The album debuted at number 81 on the US Billboard 200. The release was followed by a February tour in Australia as part of St Jerome's Laneway Festival. On March 26, 2016, the Liverpool venue Arts Club, which DIIV was scheduled to perform at on March 27, announced that the remainder of DIIV's European tour was canceled "due to an urgent health issue", which was later confirmed by DIIV's representatives.