Divorce – Divorce - Singles and LP

So, the squid was beaming some essential info to me after all. We both transmitted and received; yowsa, yowsa, yowsa. Consider this writer a fan of Divorce.


Strange things happen. Just after writing this review, I checked out the band’s site and they’d announced that – as of August 25 2013, they’d split up. http://divorcetheband.blogspot.nl/. So, consider this review a requiem for Divorce. I won’t try to alter what I wrote in the full flush of discovery, but ach, what a bloody shame. Never mind, as you’ll no doubt discover if you read the review, they’ve made some mark.


I picked this one up on the strength of its cover; what looks like a giant squid confronts the casual enquirer in a leisurely manner. I liked that, and I like the fact that said cover’s an attractive hue of snot green. These small nodes of connection mean a lot to this jaded hack. Rhizomatic or what, pop pickers?

I must say though, squid or no squid, that the cover didn’t really give much clue to the LP’s musical content. I’d not heard of Divorce before this, and if you haven’t either I’ll tell you one thing now. This record is noisy, and I mean noisy. In fact, Mozart fans, it’s a double LP of utter wailing noise. One LP comprised of old singles and one LP proper. No matter. Your immediate concern is that you may well have an issue with being confronted with a nigh on two hour battery of screaming, thrashing and thudding, but stick with it as in the maelstrom the band kicks up there are some fine tracks and a discernible plan. Once you “find your neutral space”, and experience this LP at a distance, and tap into the band’s funny worldview.  

You can glimpse this intelligence in the song titles; what is a Dreg Leg for instance? Something sloppy and slobby given the sound it makes. Or a Whisky Shoe for that matter? And what’s Bill Murray done to piss them off? The track in his honour is a weird sort of love song that quickly goes down a lurid, screeching emotional cul de sac. There’s something really impish and intelligent about them, I just can’t put my finger for too long on the frustrated, back alley, Janus-like micro worlds they seem to conjure up. For I think there’s a whole set of specific issues being addressed in a track like Wet Bandit, and (the brilliant) Meating but I know not what. No matter, it’s really an enjoyable thing.

Things progress at a rapid pace after the opener on the singles LP, Cunts In A Circle; (the guitar sound on which initially – and unfairly - had me thinking that the noise would be just the same trick the Jesus and Mary Chain pulled on Psycho Candy to cover up other elements). Snob Value is a magnificent stomping racket forever on the verge of takeoff, whereas Aids of Space is a sort of bier growl that has its foot on the listener’s throat all the way through; the vox being a sort of demented banshee scream.  And sticking with the record reveals that there is some incredible noise rock to be discovered; often with strange ingredients tossed into the stew, such as the wild jazzy sax on Stabby (Stabby) Stab, or the sludgy, “Free Your Mind & Your Ass Will Follow” feedback on Coat Your Throat.

There’s plenty more of this, you have, after all two records to play with; so pay attention to the brilliant Horseheads which is an absolute belter, almost aping Ministry in their imperial phase. And as I said, Meating and Wet Bandit should stake some small claim on your time. But there’s little more I can add in this review, you should have got the picture by now surely?

So, the squid was beaming some essential info to me after all. We both transmitted and received; yowsa, yowsa, yowsa. Consider this writer a fan of Divorce.