DIIV, formerly known as Dive, is an American indie rock band from Brooklyn, New York City. Formed in 2011, DIIV started as Zachary Cole Smith's solo recording project. After releasing three singles - "Sometime", "Human", and "Geist" - on the Captured Tracks label, DIIV released its debut full-length album, Oshin, on June 26, 2012.
Zachary Cole Smith, a guitarist in the band Beach Fossils, started a solo project in 2011. Smith, who originally named the project Dive after the Nirvana song, put together a live band that included guitarist and childhood friend Andrew Bailey (like Smith, from Connecticut), bassist Devin Ruben Perez (from New York City), and drummer Colby Hewitt (from California and formerly of Smith Westerns). Smith explained to Pitchfork Media that "everybody in the band is a water sign, that's kind of why the name Dive really spoke to us all."
Captured Tracks signed the band and released two singles, "Sometime" and "Human", which were recorded solely by Smith and had acted as demos. In May 2012, the band changed their name to DIIV, according to Smith, "out of respect for Dirk Ivens and the original Dive," a 1990s Belgian industrial group. "We’ve not been contacted by Dirk Ivens or his lawyers," Smith said in a press release, "but the short of it is that I don’t really give a fuck what the band is called." He continued, "I originated this project in a bedroom with no Internet and didn’t know if it would ever leave the bedroom. 'DIVE', the word, was an element of what inspired the project in its genesis, but we’ve outgrown the name and its associations. The band is the same, the music is the same, the future will always be the same. A name is nothing."
DIIV's debut album, Oshin, was released on June 26, 2012. It was preceded by the single "Geist" in April 2012 and the music video for "How Long Have You Known" in May 2012. The songs on Oshin were influenced by Krautrock, C86 bands, Nirvana, and world music. "People didn’t seem to pick up on the influence of these Malian guitar players, especially Baba Salah whose record I got at the library," Smith said. "He's a huge star in Mali, but he has this one record called Borey and it was huge for me and influenced the way I experimented with melody."
DIIV supported English band The Vaccines on their UK tour during November 2012. DIIV also supported the Canadian duo Japandroids on their East Coast US tour in November–December 2012.
The album Oshin was listed 22nd on Stereogum's list of top 50 albums of 2012 and 40th on Pitchfork's.