Dive – Compiled (DCD Album – Out Of Line)Posted on 27/06/13
Content: Is there anything that hasn’t been said about Dirk Ivens and his solo-project Dive? I was a bit surprised to see Out Of Line releasing this “Compiled” as the label already released the complete discography of the artist during 2012 in a special (collectors) box featuring 8 CD’s. A lot of albums have been re-edited, but a real ‘best of’ maybe was the single hiatus in Dive’s impressive discography. When Dirk Ivens set up this project releasing his debut-LP “Dive” in 1990 on his very own Body Records label he probably was the last one to imagine Dive would have such an impact on the electro scene.
Dive became one of the most influential artists during the 90s and even if he was not the inventor of electro-industrial music he for sure was the artist to make this brutal style popular. The formula consisting of heavy distorted drum sounds plus vocals was really simplistic, maybe too simplistic and yet very popular, copied and a main source of inspiration for numerous projects. I also remember Dive for his once more simplistic, but efficient and dynamic live performances. The success of Dive became an interplanetary fact and even if he was one of the leading projects during the 90s his impact remained intact till today. Dive hasn’t release anything new since his last studio album “Behind The Sun” in 1994, but he’s still performs a few times a year.
Over the years, he moved from his brutal and primitive electro-industrial receipt towards a mix featuring electronic elements. Ivan Iusco and later on Eric van Wonterghem and Rafael M. Espinosa were the helping hands in the musical evolution of Dive. Ivan Iusco was the man who contributed to the legendary album “Concrete Jungle”, which according to me, remains one of the most essential releases in Dive’s career. Iusco definitely is an artist deserving a special mention for his contribution. He also had a helping hand in albums like “Snakedressed” and “True Lies”.
This compilation is a real mirror to face Dive’s legacy. I have to admit that the initial magic has been a bit lost on several tracks, but that’s not that surprising as all of the songs now belong to a distant period. On the other hand, I still feel the magic on the very early songs. I’m referring to songs released on “Dive” and “Final Report”; tracks like “There’s No Hope”, “Dead Or Alive” and “Final Report”. These songs still are powerful and a bit tormenting as well.
Twenty years after the release of “Concrete Jungle” this album for sure remains a favorite. Songs like “Slippin’ Away”, “Take Your Dreams Away” and the unavoidable “Broken Meat” are still accurate and efficient. The distorted rhythmic became less heavy, but the electronic input and Ivens great vocal and spooky vocal capacities did the rest.
The album “Snekedressed” will be remembered for its title-song, but also for the very essential “Weeping In The Dark”. A few other cuts like “Dark Room” and “Machinegun Baby” have a bit lost of their initial impact. “True Lies” released right before the millennium (1999) was characterized by songs like “Sidewalk Sinner” or yet “Dreamhunter”. The very last album of Dive released in 2004 entitled “Behind the Sun” appeared to be a kind of turning point in Dive’s career. Dive no longer took us by surprise –even if the Dive fans for sure enjoyed this work, but sound a bit like moving on automatic pilot. I’m afraid that’s the reason why songs like “Nobody Else”, “Behind The Sun”, “Lost Inside You” didn’t really catch my attention.
A few more songs like the Klinik-cover “Power Of Passion” bring us back to the early Dive years. “Bloodmoney” was also released during the ‘first period’ on the EP “Images”. That brings me to speak about Françoise Duvivier, a French artist collaborating with Dirk Ivens and whose obscure and tormenting collages were used on several front covers and Dive’s live animation. “Compiled” also moves back to some legendary songs and collaboration like the rather pop-sounding “Obsession” featuring Kirlian Camera and “Frozen” released by Diskonnekted featuring Dive on vocals. Last, but not least I also want to mention an album like “Grinding Walls” featured by the track “The Infinite Shades Of Disgust”, which was a rather conceptual and pure soundtrack release.
If there’s a regret to have about this album it for sure is the absence of some remarkable cover versions Dive released. I’m referring to tracks like “Rocket USA” (Suicide), “Back To Nature” (Fad Gadget), “Isolation” (Joy Division) and even “Sick In Your Mind” (The Klinik).
Conclusion: The biggest challenge for Dive would for sure be the reactivation of Dive. Nothing has been announced yet, Dirk Ivens maybe preferring to leave us with the ghosts of the past… But one thing is for sure; after this “Compiled” we don’t really need a new compilation and/or re-edition! These 36 songs are like the perfect legacy of Dive’s career.
Best songs: “Snakedressed”, “Final Report”, “There’s No Hope”, “Dead Or Alive”, “Take Your Dreams Away”, “Broken Meat”, “Power Of Passion”, “Obsession”, “Frozen”, “Sidewalk Sinner”, “Mercy”, “Slippin’ Away”, “Weeping In The Dark”.
Band: www.dirkivens.com / www.facebook.com/pages/DIRK-IVENS-Absolute-Body-Control-Klinik-Dive-Sonar-/12536779886
Label: www.outofline.de / www.facebook.com/outoflinelabel
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