Divers - Hello Hello (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick


Hello Hello (2015)

Rumbletowne Records

This is where the 40 year-old in me resides, deep within the recesses of my 29 year-old husk, or so I thought. Divers are a band that defines music being made as art. They make rock music for old souls with ample modern twists that most demographics would find inspiring. love how they toy with old-school nuances and contemporary subtleties and it's a combination of all these little juicy idiosyncrasies that makes Hello Hello a record that's every inch as powerful as it is dramatic.

I should say heavily melodramatic. Harrison Rapp's vocals extend beyond the record and will echo when you're on the public commute system. He engulfs you with every note- from his cracking yet soothing disposition on "Getaway" to the old-school wailing on "Blood Song". After a couple weeks soaking in, I'd say Rapp's voice channels Robert Smith most. Maybe not fully in delivery, but something about how he holds back lyrics, murmurs and then belts shit out, just...gets me! "Listen, Teller" comes off like a Rolling Stones collaboration with Smith. When Rapp cuts loose, you get some rippers as well that classic rock fans would appreciate. Loads of swagger that I could see loyalists to Restorations, The Wallflowers and of course, Martin Scorsese, digging.

"Great Escape" has a minimal rage to it and the quiet melodies involved draw you in and immerse you in a fully-contemplative bubble. It's an austere canvas wrapping you up but one that's beautiful nonetheless. When this song goes from its calm, jazzy and soulful intro into a fuzzier, distorted breakdown, well it feels like Divers are wearing their hearts on their sleeve even more. Like a latent beast awakened. The chorus and gang vocals will send chills down your spine. Same can be said for the faster jams in "Tracks", "Lacuna" and "Wild Thing". Bits of pent-up rage and frustration emerge and charmingly so. Classic rock, indeed!

If this is Portland manifesting, then I'm in. Divers bring about an unflinching sense of heart and soul, all blanketed in a warm, comforting sentiment and this is what music was made to do. As the picky "Stateline" unwinds, on top of an ever-present and commanding bassline, it hits you how distinct each track is and how it's hard to single out any as a favorite. Divers' diverse sound points you in one direction. Home. Where the heart is. Where you'll make it. And along this trip, you'll see them painting street signs telling you that there's no such thing as comfort zones. Their music tells this novel and emphatically so. Once you start playing Hello Hello, don't even try to avoid the intrusion. Divers will crawl into any headspace available. But you'll feel reassured and safe. I promise.