The Breeders

Divine Hammer

Composed by Kim Deal

Song Review by

"Divine Hammer" could be described as the most faithful attempt at pure pop on the Breeders' second album, Last Splash, and was subsequently released as the follow-up to the successful "Cannonball" single in October of 1993. This bubbly rocker features a hook-laden arrangement with a feel-good vocal melody that belies the song's otherwise weighty subject, though softened by the use of sexual double entendre that has Kim Deal awaiting a personal epiphany to strike: "Looking for a faith, waiting to be followed." A chiming, three-note riff wastes little time driving the hook home, opening the track as drummer Jim Macpherson pushes the groove with a brisk, straight beat against jangling guitar and a steadily pumping bass line. Kim Deal's vocal is smoothed by a constant, tight harmony as she croons the dulcet singsong melody: "I'm just looking/Just looking for a way around/It disappears this near/You're the rod, I'm water/I'm just looking for the divine hammer." The song has a simple chorus, the band banging two chords awash in cymbal hiss while Deal repeats, "One divine hammer/One divine hammer." The arrangement is broken up occasionally with the band hold ringing chords, letting the guitar lick sound in the spaces left between before cruising back into the groove. Deal also lays down a tasteful, old-time guitar solo, playing off the vocal melody at several points to spice up the tune.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Last Splash 1993 4AD
Divine Hammer 1993 Elektra 2:42
Rock Am Ring 1994
Various Artists
Alex 2:40
What's Up, Vol. 2: More Greatest Rock Hits of the 90's 1994
Various Artists
Warner Music 2:40
blue highlight denotes editor's pick