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This past year was great for bands emerging from other bands formations, and DIIV is an awesome new one: initially a solo project by Zachary Cole Smith – who plays guitars in Beach Fossils – it evolved into a band after Andrew Bailey, Devin Ruben Perez, and Colby Hewitt (formerly from Smith Westerns) joined. Previously called Dive because of the Nirvana song, it was under their new name DIIV that the boys released the debut album Oshin in June. In a triad of guitars-bass-drums, it’s a dream pop-meets-shoegaze record, bringing comparisons to bands like The War On Drugs and Real Estate.
The experimentalism of Oshin makes you feel like you are surrounded by a myriad of sounds, as if yo were drifted by its different intensities of the tracks, and at the same time as if you were alone in a peaceful outer galaxy. In this transcendental space they take the listener there are possibly carefree experiences, gauzy ones, as it happens in tracks like “(Druun)”, “How Long Have You Known”, “Earthboy”, and “Sometime”.
It’s also possible to try out some complex states, more haunted, with heavier tracks like “Air Conditioning”, “Wait”, “(Druun Pt. II)”, “Oshin (Subsume)” and “Doused”, which have a meticulous, inconstant constancy mainly brought by guitars and reverb. The use of this oxymoron shows the paradox of the album: inconstant and constant, feel surrounded and alone, and as it’s chanted in the final track “Home” – “you’ll never have a home / you’ll never have a home / you’ll never have a home until you go home”. But these singularities do not affect the album as a whole piece, far from it, that’s exactly what gives its taste as a marvelous creation made to stimulate your chakras to explore the unusual, undefined, and unknown.