In 2000, Kitty Vincent and Joe Grobelny started a band with some friends after meeting through an ad at Albums on the Hill in Boulder. Facade was the name of that outfit, and its music was kind of a cross between jazz and dream pop, with Vincent's velvety voice weaving through tight rhythms and Grobelny's precise yet creative guitar work.
Facade split in 2002, and Vincent all but dropped out of the music scene for the better part of the rest of the decade. He eventually regrouped with Grobelny, who had gone on to play in the short-lived Jet Set Kate, followed by a stint in Everything Absent or Distorted (a love story). When the two reconvened, Grobelny called upon former EAOD bandmate Ryan Stubbs to play bass and recruited former (die) PILOT Chris Durant to keep time for Le Divorce, as the new band was christened.
Le Divorce's new EP, Pull Yourself Together, features songs with evocative atmospheres that display a masterful use of dynamics, creating subtle yet cathartic tension. We caught up with Vincent and Grobelny recently and asked about the significance of the name and the new album.
Le Divorce EP-release show, with Mike Marchant's Outer-Space Party Unit and the Outfit, 8 p.m. Saturday, August 14, Larimer Lounge, 2721 Larimer Street, $4-$8, 303-291-1007.
Westword: Assuming you didn't name yourselves after the Merchant-Ivory movie or the Diane Johnson novel, why did you pick the name Le Divorce?
Kitty Vincent: When we started this project, Joe was in the middle of a divorce, and I was about a year off of one. It's kind of a weird thing to be divorced in your twenties. Everything Absent or Distorted had just broken up, and we were hanging out, and we just started writing songs together not knowing what it was going to be. This project almost started as therapy more than anything else. I thought it up in my car, and Joe said, "That doesn't suck," and we weren't going to spend months trying to figure out a band name.
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Joe Grobelny: And French sounds fancy.
At what point, as a band or as individual musicians, did you realize you had outgrown your influences and were writing songs in your own voice?
KV: I think we felt that since day one. We all had bands that we loved and drew from, but I don't think we've ever set out to sound like anything in particular. I don't think we knew what this band was going to sound like when we put it together. When I list influences, it's mostly an arbitrary thing, because people need some idea of what they're coming to see.
Ryan Stubbs: I think what makes bands unique is the personalities of the individual people. Eventually, the touchstones of what they like comes out, and that evolves over time.