Buzz-worthy band Divine Fits opens for The Shins in Vail
Ryan Summerlin December 13, 2012
Britt Daniel has performed on David Letterman’s show before, but the “iconic” television host was never quite so complimentary as he was after the Divine Fits took the stage in mid-November.
“(Letterman) said, ‘I’m going to manage these guys’ and told everyone to ‘go buy this record; it’s all you need,'” Daniel said during a phone interview last week. “He’s always been nice, but this time, he went all out.”
The band’s manager wasn’t able to attend the show. He called Daniel afterward to find out how it went.
“I said, ‘It went really well, but there’s some bad news, too. I’ll let you just watch it and see.’ He wrote me an email that night that said, ‘Well, first of all, Letterman can go f*** himself.’
“I grew up watching Letterman,” Daniel continued. “For me, he’s the most iconic talk show host, the best; it was a day to remember for sure.”
The very hip Divine Fits open for The Shins Thursday night at Vail Snow Daze. The concert venue at Ford Park opens at 6 p.m., and music will begin at 6:30 p.m.
Though technically a new band, each musician is highly pedigreed in his own rite: Daniel, the frontman for the band Spoon (which is still together); Dan Boeckner, of Wolf Parade and Handsome Furs (Handsome Furs is no longer together) acclaim; Sam Brown, of New Bomb Turks; and Alex Fischel, of Papa.
As for the band name, Daniel said it was simply just a few words that sounded good together, and he liked that the name had a slew of possible meanings.
“It could be divine, as in heavenly or splendid, and fit, as in the way the clothes fit or fit as in tantrum,” Daniel said. “We considered all the things it could mean, and it seemed pretty loaded with possibility, loaded with context.”
The group has been together less than a year but has gotten plenty of buzz from more than just Letterman: Music journalists from NPR to Rolling Stone and Pitchfork have poured out the compliments for the band’s first album, “A Thing Called Divine Fits,” which has already landed on a few “Best of 2012” music lists.
The band members are spread out – Daniel is based in Austin, Brown lives in Ohio, and both Boeckner and Fischel are in Los Angeles. Everyone camped out in L.A. to write and record the album, which they finished up in May.
In Spoon, Daniel is used to being the frontman, the only guy on stage who talks to the audience, but in Divine Fits, he gets to split the duties with Boeckner, which is a welcome reprieve.
“It’s cool playing with Dan because he’s a songwriter and sings, so I only do that for half the record and half the shows,” Daniel said. “It’s different. I like backing people up who I believe in. If he wasn’t as great as he is, it wouldn’t be as fun.”
The band opens for the Black Keys in Las Vegas on New Year’s Eve, and in January, they head to Australia to tour.
“We’ve been trying to write some new songs, and we’ll be touring a lot next year,” Daniel said. “I’m also going to make a Spoon record pretty soon. I’ll be working on it next year. I’m bouncing around, doing both (projects).”
In between, he’ll likely be waiting to hear from Letterman.