Sensory Overload

Review: Divine Fits get up close and personal at Ace of Cups

Posted by Chris DeVille | August 07, 2012 02:20 PM

Five quick thoughts on Divine Fits' highly anticipated Columbus debut Monday at Ace of Cups:

(1) Cheers to Ace of Cups for not overselling the place. The show was sold out, but I never felt overcrowded or uncomfortable in the way sold-out shows often feel.

(2) There really was some star power at work Monday. Considering Spoon played LC Pavilion last time they came through Columbus, it was awesome to see Britt Daniel performing up close again. Same goes for Dan Boeckner, last seen by me performing with Wolf Parade in front of a thousands-strong festival crowd.

(3) "Neopolitans," the closing track from the band's forthcoming debut album, made for a pretty anticlimatic opener. I don't mind starting with a slow, tension-building number — in fact, I adore that approach — but I wasn't feeling Daniel's feeble art-damaged murmurs, especially from a guy who can howl like he can.

(4) Stylistically, the show was all over the place in a way that was mostly fun and adventurous though sometimes disorienting. There were songs that might as well be Spoon singles (and damn fine ones) like "Flaggin' a Ride" and "Would That Not Be Nice." There were songs that obviously came from Boeckner's mind, particularly a highlight performance of lead single "My Love Is Real" (see above) that lent the song previously unforeseen heft and huff. Those were the most immediately satisfying, yet the evening's more intriguing moments came when you can hear Daniel and Boeckner's styles colliding and melding. I'm really looking forward to hearing what the second and third Divine Fits albums might sound like, after they've had more time to rub off on each other.

(5) I was far enough back in the room that I could barely see Sam Brown, the Columbus-based drummer whose membership in the band is the reason they played Ace of Cups in the first place. But I could definitely hear him, and I remain incredibly impressed. I'm not surprised that he's playing with indie rock superstars, but rather that it took the indie rock superstars this long to find him.

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