Since the announcement back in May that Spoon’s Britt Daniel, Wolf Parade/Handsome Furs’ Dan Boeckner and New Bomb Turks’ Sam Brown formed a band, Divine Fits have been on everybody’s radar and rightfully so.
Though its members are highly influential in the indie music world, this is not your typical “supergroup,” and that was proven during the trio’s first Los Angeles show Tuesday night at Bootleg Theater. In their respective primary bands, each of these musicians take their jobs seriously, especially Daniel. With Spoon he is the stoic ringleader, but during this performance he let loose, every once and awhile eying Boeckner with a glowing grin on his face. It was clear these guys weren’t doing this for the paycheck, but rather for the fun and excitement of a new project.
The three-piece began its set with “Flaggin A Ride,” off its debut album, A Thing Called Divine Fits (out August 28 via Merge Records). With Daniel on vocal duty and Boeckner on guitar, the two were able to show their strengths right away. The Spoon crooner sang his heart out (to much applause) while the former Wolf Parade front man thrashed his instrument, releasing that frenetic energy he is known for.
At first, this paradigm was a bit off-putting. Anyone who has seen Spoon is used to Daniel taking the show, but when compared to Boeckner’s feverish intensity, it was clear who lit the spark in Divine Fits. The other members fed off the guitarist’s energy as he clawed and struck his strings, and after a few songs, the dynamic felt natural.
The electro-indie-rock outfit played every song from its upcoming debut, as well as crowd-pleasing covers of The Wipers’ “Doom Town,” and Tom Petty’s “You Got Lucky.” “Okay, this is our last song,” Daniel told the crowd before delving into the band’s rendition of The Boys Next Doors’ “Shivers,” (which appears on the album). “And I’m serious, because we don’t know how to play any more songs.”
The crowd laughed and cheered as the trio masterfully executed its bone-chilling rendition of the tune. Though this band comprises veterans in the indie rock arena, it was amazing to see a group that has only played seven shows together perform so flawlessly. After performing their electronic heavy, avant-pop track, “The Salton Sea,” Daniel himself said, “I think that’s the best version of that we’ve ever played.” It’s really something to see pros glowing with the excitement of a new band.
Divine Fits are playing a slew of shows in the Los Angeles area, including a performance at Hotel Café on August 21, The Hollywood Forever Cemetery on August 28 and The Echo on September 4. Check out a full list of tour dates here.