The Division Men
This Texas bred, Husband / Wife Acoustic Duo originally formed in Berlin, Germany in 2008. They are now based in Austin, TX. The band is made up of founder J. Spencer Portillo (vocals / acoustic guitar) and Caroline Rippy Portillo (vocals / bass guitar).

The Division Men's named was derived from the idea of artists collaborating from all over the world, divided by their locations. Eventually, the collaborations dwindled but were survived by J. Spencer and his then girlfriend Caroline.

Caroline was born in San Antonio, Texas. From 2007 until 2012, she played bass guitar for Tito & Tarantula. J. Spencer Portillo was born in Los Angeles, California but was raised in El Paso, Texas. His El Paso roots offer a huge influence on the lyrics which frequently present atmospheric portraits of love, life in a border town and death.

The Division Men is actively touring and promoting their new album "Under The Gun" which was recorded at their in-home studio in Austin, Texas. The Division Men has a distinctive sound that has been described as dark, romantic, ethereal and haunting.

Download "Under The Gun" at 

we have a NEW VIDEO at

Recent Submissions

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"Criminal" by The Division Men

Kristin Schloesser

Definitely onto something.. honest voice & lyrics.. reminds me of Leonard Cohen, and a little bit Half step Tom Waits. I wanted a bit more arc, rise & fall, climax.. but all in all, a solid track. Very cinematic, as in, I can hear it on a TV series. 

Andrea Young

Leonard Cohen and Tom Waits-ish. Intriguing dark vocal tone.  Engaging  production and arrangement. The video is a bit dark for me but very well done.  Not sure it’s for Aspenbeat, but it is radio ready.  Good luck with your music!     

Wiley Koepp

"Criminal" by The Division Men is a hauntingly Tom Waits-sounding tale, with a rather impressive accompanying music video.  The concept of a narrative music video seems to have gone by the wayside, but this mysterious travelogue leads the viewer from Texas into the heart of old New Orleans.  Well-shot and using vivid colorscapes, The Division Men have something to be proud of.  It's not a gimmick, it's not going to go Miley-level viral, but is rather a respectable visual counterpart to their music.

Chuk Jones

Don't really have anything negative to say about this video...  I like the use of filtering and I think the location and costuming fit the feel of the song. Austin, TX rocks! Good job!

Alan Poyer

Holy shit this is cool.

The voice and (female background vocals) are mesmerizing. 

Love the Ab-Bb-B-Db-B-Bb-Ab motive the chime/bell plays throughout - at :59 for example. Also enjoy how that motive pans on the Right and Left - swapping off. 

There are so many thing to enjoy with this. The pure simplicity gives soul, and not overplaying the sections gives the piece even more weight. In other words, if you were to keep repeating the sections and creating a long story, you'd lose some of the impact and the listener might tire. Instead you convey the message perfectly.

I just finished reading The Goldfinch (http://www.amazon.com/The-Goldfinch-Pulitzer-National-Finalists/dp/0316055433), and I think you guys would enjoy it based on this theme...that's all I'm going to say :)

Just finished looking at your site - really like the way you're showcasing reviews. I'm going to put a feature for you guys on my site - just let me know if you'd like a Q&A or if there's anything else you'd like to add (upcoming releases, news, etc.). I'll probably finish one over the next couple weeks. Thanks again for sending my way!

P.S. Quick note - it'd be great for you to feature a download link on the Fluence description as well as your YouTube video. Just a thought :) Cheers!

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Travis Keller

I like the song and I totally dig your vibe. I'd just like to see a different production something raw, the song of this song being played live with minimal overdubs. I'd like to hear you sound more like the first Mazzy Star record meets Love & Rockets - "Sweet FA". Almost sounding like an English band pretending to be America. I dunno if that makes sense to you but it does to me. 

I like your vocals, I kinda wish you have a little more attitude instead of sounding almost sleepy at times. I wish you'd tell me about what its like! Tell me about what it feels like! Sell me! Make me believe you. Make me know what that songs about.

Please impress me with your next song. 

PS. You're a better songwriter than 99% of bands. Dont give up, keep writing until you get THAT SONG. This isn't that song but it has glimmers or hints of it at times. 

Aaron Frank

Really enjoying this off the bat. The production is warm and the guitar melody reminds me of recent great indie bands like Girls and Pure X. The female vocals and effects on the chorus are a brilliant touch, uncovering a more tender layer that might have not otherwise been felt. This song is a true joy to hear, and I appreciate the submission. The lyrics are beautiful. The guitar solo and transitions are solid and smooth. And the production is completely and perfectly on point. Wouldn't change a thing about this song, and as I mentioned before, it's been a pleasure to listen. I'll be following you on Soundcloud after this, and feel free to keep me updated on your music.

Maria Mouk

quite lovely, haunted and moody. i dont have advice, aside for get it out there and circulating :) maybe some online radio plays or spotify playlists,  sxsw? :)
good luck!

Kevin Hugger

If you are in the market for a soundtrack for the dreams you can partially remember and involved some half-baked romance then ‘Dying To Get By’ could be for you. This is because this song exists in the shadows, hanging in the air like cigarette smoke that refuses to dissipate. It hardly matters that the vocals switch between male and female because the sense of eeriness is all persuasive.  Given these constructs its natural home would most probably be a scene from ‘True Detective’ where the sense of desperation is almost too much to bear. The Handsome Family could have some competition on their hands if The Division Men can build on this promising effort.