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Biography

  • Years Active

    2008 – present (13 years)

  • Founded In

    Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

  • Members

    • Alistair Montfort (2008 – present)
    • Steph Hughes

Taking their name from the main character in F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel Tender Is the Night, indie pop/indie rock quartet Dick Diver formed in Melbourne, Australia in 2008. Drawing inspiration from the emotionally rich pop of fellow countrymen the Go-Betweens, as well as the brainy guitar wrangling of Television and Yo La Tengo, guitarists Rupert Edwards and Alistair McKay, drummer Steph Hughes, and busy bassist Al Montfort (who also played with Total Control, Lower Plenty, and UV Race at different times) released their first EP, Arks Up, in 2009. It began their relationship with Chapter Records, who released all their albums, and with producer Mikey Young (of Total Control and Eddy Current Suppression Ring), who produced them.

Edwards and McKay wrote most of the songs on their debut, but on their first full-length album, the whole band chipped in with writing and singing. Recorded in an old homestead in High Country, Victoria, New Start Again was released in 2011 and saw the band building on the Australian following their EP had garnered, while sending their sound out to the world. The band's next album, 2013's Calendar Days, was recorded at a beach house on Phillip Island, and when released received warm reviews. Soon afterward, the band set off on a worldwide tour that included slots at big festivals (Laneway, Golden Plains) in Australia. That same year they did a split single with Lower Plenty for Matador's Singles Going Home Alone series, then in July of 2014 issued a single ("New Name Blues") for Fruits & Flowers. Keeping with tradition, their next record was recorded in another out of the way locale, this time a former sheep shearing shed in Apollo Bay, Victoria. Released in early 2015, Melbourne, Florida was their first album to be released by a U.S. label, Trouble in Mind, as well as by Chapter.

Any indie pop band from Australia is going to get compared to the Go-Betweens; it's inevitable. Melbourne's Dick Diver have been one of the few to actually be worthy of such heady praise. No band will ever be able to replace the Go-Betweens or fill the void their demise left, but if Dick Diver keep making albums as deeply satisfying as Melbourne, Florida, the pain will be a little less severe.

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