Tonight’s entertainment comes in the form of New York’s finest surf rockers gracing this historic venue with their presence. Signed to Captured Tracks, DIIV started as a solo project for lead singer Zachary Smith Cole, which interestingly was originally called Dive after the Nirvana track. Cole put together a live band to play his recorded tracks, and four years later the incarnation we see in front of us is Diiv.

Support for the evening comes in the form of local boys Spring King. The fast paced garage rock band again stemmed from a solo project, this time of drummer and vocalist Tarek Musa, with the rest of the band merging into the fray with time. Their name originates from Musa’s affection for an old spring tank in one of his amps, a friend of his dubbing him the ‘Spring King’.

They start with a fast tempo and the vocals coming from the drummer is an unusual and intriguing set up. The venue is already packed and they are going down a storm as they tear through a number of tracks which channel Ramones and Clash vibes. Musa himself says he feels weird being stuck at the back of the stage, feeling adrift from his band members. The ditty endears him to the crowd and they hoot in admiration.

Stand out track of the set comes in the form of ‘City’, with its intense energy, reverbing and echoing guitar riffs and savage drum beat. The track builds in elements with its progression and the room is soon bouncing along nicely. It’s fair to say, they’ve been received well by this crowd.

Five piece Diiv take the stage for the main event to many cheers, hoots and general hubbub. Their unique blend of jangly surf style rock has meant a sell-out show tonight in Manchester, and you can certainly sense that as you look round the space before you. A hat is placed serendipitously over the microphone in order to muffle the vocals and the set begins. The drums drive the tunes and on their new tracks there is a heavier synth vibe and the guitars presence can be distinguished more clearly. The band are clearly enjoying themselves and the crowd soak in their stunning live performance.

‘Oshin’ receives the biggest cheer of the night, with its krautrock influences it begins mellow with plucked guitars stealing the focus, before synths take over and the sound builds on each revelation. As the vocals come into play in hushed tones, the backing vocals are drawn to the forefront and the overall effect is enchanting as the elements merge together in a hypnotic swirl. This track is a real feel good tune and as the musical segments play together you can feel yourself being pulled into the moment. The scratched effects bring up the rear and add yet more magic before drawing to an abrupt end.

Diiv have cranked up a storm here tonight and as I leave the venue I see merchandise flying out the door, which is always a pleasing sight. Their blended surf garage rock offers a heady mixture and is captivating to watch live. The energy on stage oozes from the band and infects the crowd unashamedly. With new album Is The Is Are already in production, it will be very interesting to see what they can offer up next and if the new tracks performed tonight are anything to go by, its set to be quite exciting.

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Lover of all things psych and shoegaze and the mind behind Astral Elevator; constantly seeking new musical experiences in a world full of noise.