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on August 28, 2012
"Supergroups" rarely live up to their pedigree; it's almost assumed that when members from other bands come together, the sum will always be less than the parts. Velvet Revolver (Guns N Roses + Stone Temple Pilots), Audioslave (Soundgarden + Rage Against the Machine), "Van Hagar" (Van Halen + Sammy Sagar), etc... But every now and then, a collaboration will come up that's just as good as the work that the other band members have created: Broken Social Scene, Crosby Stills & Nash, and Cream.

The word "supergroup" has been thrown around a lot in regards to Divine Fits line up: Brit Daniel on guitar/vocals (Spoon), Dan Boeckner guitar/vocals (Wolf Parade), Sam Brown on drums/percussion (New Bomb Turks), and Alex Fischel on keyboards/synthesizers. To be sure, Divine Fits have the pedigree to be a good band, and luckily, easily they are able to meet their reputation and expectations. With Boeckner and Daniel sharing vocal duties pretty evenly, the band's music sounds like a collaboration of sensibilities rather than a competition (like the Raconteurs would sometimes sound). The band's debut album, A THING CALLED DIVINE FITS is 11 tracks, 42+ minutes of fantastic indie-rock.

While there are surely elements of each band present in Divine Fits' debut, the band creates its own sounds with its own sensibilities thanks to the dripping synthesizers of Fischel. The album introduces itself as a more electronic version of anything the band's members have done: "My Love is Real" uses electric bass and synthesizers to give it an 80's new-wave vibe. A THING CALLED DIVINE FITS isn't done there though -- the next track, "Flaggin A Ride" is a stomping, grooving rocker that relies on bare-bones instrumentation. True to form, some of the Brit Daniel-led tracks are minimal in design, only relying on drums, bass, and sparse guitar. Fans of Spoon who were let down by the recent TRANSFERENCE ought find this as a welcome return. One of the album highlights, "Would That Not Be Nice," sounds like a GaGaGaGaGa-era Spoon. The groovy "Baby Get Worse" finds Boeckner on singing duty with a track that would feel at home in a Wolf Parade album.

The rest of the songs here though, sound like an amalgamation of these bands. "The Salton Sea," is laden with synthesizers -- it's experimentation trapped in a pop song's shell. "Shivers" finds Daniel at his most sincere, and the downtempo rock song serves as one of the album's best -- the band knocks this Boys Next Door cover out of the park. "Neopolitans" leaves listeners guessing as it moves beyond form or convention. The final track, "Like Ice Cream," is a bouncing, shaking song that ends the album with a salute to summer. It's a great ending: concise, sharp, and pulsing.

Fans of Spoon, Wolf Parade, or the New Bomb Turks will likely find material here to love. Spoon fans put off by the band's recent TRANSFERENCE will be pleased with Brit Daniel's contributions here. Essential tracks to sample/download: "My Love Is Real," "For Your Heart," "Would That Not Be Nice" and "Shivers." It's not always an immediate or accessible album, but it's one that pays off in big ways.
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on September 25, 2012
If you are considering buying this album, you most likely are either a Dan Boeckner fan or a Spoon fan, or both. I am a longtime Spoon fan but after listening to the Divine Fits, I will have to learn more about Boeckner's other projects. A Thing Called the Divine Fits is fun indie/alternative pop album, filled with great melodies, 80s electronics, minimalist guitar and great vocals from both frontmen. From the perspective of a Spoon listener, it sounds like an off-the-cuff spoon album put through a strange 80's production filter. I am surprised to find the Divine Fits to be more fun than the last Spoon album, Transference, which had many good moments but could be a bit self-serious and tedious. Boeckner and Daniels seem to be enjoying themselves, and that feeling is infectious. Here's to hoping for another Divine Fits album and another Spoon album.
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This past weekend I saw Divine Fits in concert for the first time (more on that later). In anticipation of that show, I just had to relisten to their debut album from last Fall, which was released among high expectations, this being an indie-rock "super-group" (including Spoon's Britt Daniel and Wolf Parade's Dan Boeckner).

"A Thing Called Divine Fits" (11 tracks; 43 min.) opens with a vengeance, "My Love Is Real" (1st single) is a biting yet catchy track. "Flagging a Ride" is a brooding mid-tempo road song. "What Gets You Alone" immediately reminds us of Daniel's work with Spoon. "Would That Not Be Nice" is in the vein of "My Love Is Real". "The Salton Sea" reminded me of Ultravox 30 years ago, and that's a compliment. "Baby Gets Worse" is a hypnotizing tune. Things slow down (and go acoustic) on "Civilian Stripes", only to be followed by the majestic "For Your Heart" (almost 6 min., by far the longest song on here). The album falters just lightly towards the end, but closer "Neopolitans" brings it home very nicely.

In all, this is a very nice debut album. I saw these guys in concert this past weekend at the Bunbury Music Festival here in Cincinnati where they played the next-to-last set (MGMT closed Day 2 after them), and they put on a fantastic 60 min. set. They played pretty much everything from the album (interestingly, they opened with the album's closing track Neopolitans), and they also brought the brand new single "Ain't That The Way" and a cover of Tom Petty's "You Got Lucky" to boot. A great set that was! Meanwhile, I would readily recommend this album. "A Thing Called Divine Fits" is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
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on August 26, 2013
I heard a few tracks on the radio, loved the sound, bought the album, loved it from start to finish.

I was describing it to my friend and told them if they liked Spoon, they'd like Divine Fits because they sound a lot like Spoon.

Then I did some reading up on Divine Fits, where I learned Divine Fits is a super group including the lead from Spoon. Oops.
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on April 25, 2013
After one listen I really liked this CD. It feels like I will come to love it. There is just enough electronica to make it interesting without overwhelming the music it supports.
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on October 1, 2012
Divine Fits are a band I had on my radar since I learned two of my favorite bands were getting together (Wolf Parade & Spoon). This whole album stinks of both bands attempting to merge, however I think each song tends to cater to each of it's frontman talents.

I call it divided because the album takes a break at "Salton Sea" however that's my opinion. Every song in that album is amazing. This album is a poppy Wolf Parade/Spoon love child
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on February 11, 2014
Okay, I love this collaboration between Wolf Parade and Spoon. Loved both bands individually, and together they're great. Each song is tappable and has high replay. They're so good my fiance proposed to on the way to their show because as he said, "I was waiting for a good band to come to town to ask you to marry me."
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on August 5, 2013
I really enjoy Spoon, so I was delighted to find out about the Divine Fits. It's always fun to hear new musical collaborations. "Flaggin' a Ride" has such a Spoon sound that it almost belongs on "Transference". I'm not sure if that's a good or a bad thing.
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on December 19, 2012
So, we need to get something clear that a lot of people seem to be struggling with: this is not a Wolf Parade/Spoon supergroup. If anything, it's a Handsome Furs/Spoon supergroup, but even that doesn't do it justice. The album exists on its own as an amazing collaboration between two talented songwriters (Dan Boeckner and Britt Daniel) bringing everything they know to the table. When you listen to it as a collaboration between the two, you can see that the first part of the album is a bit of give and take--obvious Boeckner songs interspersed with obvious Daniel songs. However, by the middle of the album, the edges are blurred, and by the last song, "Neopolitans," it's hard to tell who's in charge. Each contributes admirably to the other's songs and really rounds them out.

I recently saw the band perform live and if anything, they're even better live--the energy of the songs gets ramped up and it's hard not to be absorbed by it all. What feels at times cooly calculated on the album becomes instantly inspired, frenetic and chaotic--as if the band itself were caught up in some sort of divine fit. I know, cheesy metaphor, but it's true.

When the band is at its best, it's nothing short of phenomenal--when it's at its worst, it's Dan Boeckner and Britt Daniel playing the same great stuff we've come to expect from them over the years.

If you have anything approaching an appreciation of indie rock, you should buy this album. You won't be disappointed.
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on May 3, 2013
What a fun album! Spoon is a blast and bringing in some fresh talent here brings a fun newer sound. Brit Daniel is finding a way to a bit of commercial success finally? He and this album deserves it! Just darn fun.
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