I was going to begin this post with a comment on how much Brooklyn quartet DIIV has changed since they performed here last February, but really they haven’t. Besides changing their name from Dive to DIIV, the band is pretty much the same. Same syrupy guitar reverb. Same half-mumbled vocal lines from Zachary Cole Smith, who began the group as a side project from Beach Fossils. Same raggedy fashion aesthetic. Same dreampop melodies. Maybe drummer Colby Hewitt’s backbeats were a little more assertive this time around, but not much else.
It’s the audience that has changed. Or maybe it’s just gown exponentially. When DIIV opened for Teenage Cool Kids last February, their audience consisted of about eleven students and one beach ball. Last night, after a summer that brought them much hype and a few high–profile opening slots, DIIV commanded a crowd well over 200 and dove (ha) triumphantly through most of the material on debut LP Oshin. Plus, maybe it’s the lack of serious punk shows on the calendar this semester, but this crowd seemed especially ready to blow off steam. From my vantage point, I spotted crowdsurfing, light moshing, and a whole lot of that barreling-forward-and-almost-knocking-over-the-PA-speaker thing. To their credit, DIIV politely ignored the action and pushed a few of their noisy guitar interplay bits past the five-minute mark.
Yes, crowdsurfing during a DIIV concert is a thing you can do at Wesleyan. Shout-out to Vassar’s Painted Zeros for a great opening set of fuzzy early-’90s noise-pop. A full gallery of both bands (mostly DIIV) appears below.