Meadow Florence

Divorce conjure their own version of a murder ballad with “Checking Out”, announce debut EP

Three songs in and Nottingham quartet Divorce haven’t missed yet, have they? The band’s new single “Checking Out” offers another fuzz-drenched slice of kitchen sink storytelling. It’s actually a murder ballad, but not one rooted in the cliché twisted love story. The song tells a tale of two estranged lovers living in a rough neighborhood. The wife, played by Tiger Cohen-Towell, feels unsafe: she hides a steak knife under the bed in case there’s a house invasion when her husband is away, and of course it all ends in blood and tears.

“I’ve always loved dramatic country and western ballads and a major inspiration for the track was country-singer Marty Robbins,” Cohen Towell comments.  “Who writes the most intense ‘gunfighter ballads’, which are bordering on slap-stick in their incessant violence and all-American heroism. I wanted to flip that on its head by having a female narrator who feels justified in her heinous act because those gunfighter ballads make you root for the underdog anti-hero, even if they are behaving completely irrationally — that’s a running theme in country music I think. ‘Checking Out’ is satirical and humorous, whilst getting into the head of a person who has been pushed too far and had enough of mistreatment in a relationship (although I don’t condone murder!)”

Much like “Services”,  “Checking Out” offers a fun, eye-brow raising mix of indie rock and roots music. But Divorce add a new wrinkle to their craft by ending the song with a spectral semi-ambient freak folk passage with chiming guitars and clattering percussion, sorta reminiscent of Megatrain, the project Cohen-Towell and Felix MacKenzie-Barrow formed before they became Divorce. Furthermore, the band announced their debut EP “Get Mean”, out December 2 via Hand In Hive (preorder via Bandcamp).

As Divorce revealed in our Q&A feature, Cohen-Towell and MacKenzie-Barrow have deep roots in the field of stage acting, which is evident by the music video depicting the song’s storyline with a school play kind of charm. Check it out below or find the song on streaming outlets.

Follow Divorce on FacebookTwitter and Instagram. Catch them live on the following tour dates.

4th Oct – Polar Bear, Hull
5th Oct – Sidney & Matilda, Sheffield
6th Oct – Hare & Hounds 2, Birmingham
7th Oct – The Shooting Gallery @ Zerox, Newcastle
8th Oct – Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh
9th Oct – Broadcast, Glasgow
11th Oct – Hope & Ruin, Brighton
12th Oct – Sebright Arms, London
13th Oct – The Loft, Portsmouth
15th Oct – The Crofters Rights, Bristol
21st-22nd – Left Of The Dial, Rotterdam
28th Oct – The Bodega, Nottingham