New Start Again, the debut album by Melbourne foursome Dick Diver, is warm and understated, shot through with casual grace and supported by real backbone. It’s an intriguing combination of widescreen Australian sweep, 70s New York edge and 90s indie-rock scratch that transcends its influences to become truly honest and exciting.
The respectively wry and poetic songwriting of guitarists Rupert Edwards and Alistair McKay lobs Dick Diver up alongside Go-Betweens heroes Forster & McLennan, while their often epic fretwork bears echoes of Television and Yo La Tengo.
But bassist Al Montfort’s impeccable punk pedigree (UV Race, Total Control, Straightjacket) roughs up the band’s bookish proclivities, while drummer Steph Hughes brings a similarly frayed-edge appeal. Her background in bands from Children Collide to Boomgates gives the band an offhand, subtly swinging charm.
Their first EP, 2009’s Arks Up, enjoyed Triple J rotation and community radio thrashing, and brought shows with Stephen Malkmus and a Boogie Festival appearance, amongst other plaudits.
Rupert and Al Mc hogged the songwriting duties on the EP, but New Start Again, recorded with Eddy Current Suppression Ring’s Mikey Young at an old homestead in country Victoria, is a much more even-handed affair. The band share songwritng, swap instruments, and introduce new sounds like pedal steel, piano, and slide guitar. Steph and Al Monty’s title-track duet, especially, provides a laidback, cheeky counterpointo their bandmates’ more considered efforts.
Rupert, meanwhile, provides lovelorn-but-snappy first single Through the D and sook-pop classic On the Bank, while Al Mc displays impressionistic lyrical flair on tracks like Hammock Days and Seagulls. And on closing track Head Back, the four loosen their collars to create probably the funnest five minutes of music released in Australia this year.
Related Artists & Releases
By Dick Diver Released March 2013
Much-loved Melbourne guitar slingers Dick Diver return with second album Calendar Days, the follow-up to 2011 debut New Start Again.
Previously known for their scratchy, dueling guitars and laconic delivery, Dick Diver throw a few curveballs on Calendar Days. The first sound you hear on the record is the tick of a drum machine, and there [...]
Much-loved Melbourne guitar slingers Dick Diver return with their second album Calendar Days, and announce a Melbourne album launch. They also play a free, all ages instore at Polyester Records’ city store next Friday (the day of the album’s release), and this weekend play at Golden Plains!
Previously known for their scratchy, dueling guitars and laconic [...]
Chapter Music soul siblings Twerps and Dick Diver both release their long-awaited debut albums today, in a knock-em-dead two-hitter sure to leave fans reeling all over the globe. The two bands are very different, with Twerps all scrappy and drunk and loveable, and Dick Diver more sprawling and poetic, but together their albums Twerps and [...]
By Dick Diver Released October 2011
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New Start Again, the debut album by Melbourne foursome Dick Diver, is warm and understated, shot through with casual grace and supported by real backbone. It’s an intriguing combination of widescreen Australian sweep, 70s New York edge and 90s indie-rock scratch that transcends [...]
New Start Again, the debut album by Melbourne foursome Dick Diver, combines widescreen Australian sweep, 70s New York edge with 90s indie-rock scratch, but transcends its influences to become something truly honest and exciting.
Recorded with Eddy Current/Total Control’s Mikey Young at an old homestead in country Victoria, the album sees Dick Diver sharing songwriting, swapping instruments, and introducing new sounds [...]