Savage Garden Grow Permanently Apart

Trial separation leads to musical divorce, Darren Hayes finishing up solo album.

Darren Hayes and Daniel Jones, how does your garden grow?

Apart, it seems, insofar as the Australian pop duo Savage Garden have called it quits after five years together.

Neither their label, Columbia Records, nor Hayes' spokesperson would comment on the breakup. However, as Jones told Reuters on Friday (October 5), "We achieved something so great in a short period of time that we had to look for something else. We've both had a lot of success together. We'll probably have a lot of success independently in the future."

While Jones plans a career outside of music, Hayes said he has finished recording his debut solo record.

"Way back after the last tour, Daniel decided he wanted to take a break from the band and I was forced into a big vacation I didn't want to take," Hayes explained from the set of the video for the all-star remake of "What's Going On." "So I started writing songs with Rick Nowels [Dido, Melanie C], Walter Afanasieff [Celine Dion, Mariah Carey] and people like that."

He did not address Savage Garden's demise.

Hayes recorded his upcoming album, Spin, in San Francisco during the past year.

"It's really cool. It's probably the thing I'm most proud of, ever," he said. "It's a mixture of pop, R&B and electronica. Savage Garden was always a collaboration. This was me on my own, which was scary but cool because I could muck around with electronica and things I couldn't do in the band."

Spin's first single will be released in late November, with the album to follow early next year. Hayes wouldn't reveal the single's title but described the song as "very sexy" and said his record company is negotiating with a noted director to film its video in Australia.

Hayes wrote 35 new songs for the record, though only 13 made the final cut. "The cool thing is, a lot of the ones I didn't use will be B-sides, bonus tracks or stuff you can download on the Internet," he said.

Savage Garden scored a #1 single in 1998 with the love song "Truly Madly Deeply," from their eponymous 1997 debut. The album sold nearly 5 million copies, according to SoundScan.

The guys' relationship may have severed years before they officially called it quits as a band. Hayes left their native Brisbane for New York as the band was riding high on the charts, while Jones stayed behind to concentrate on music. Their second album, 1999's Affirmation, sold more than 2.6 million copies and yielded the group's second #1 single, "I Knew I Loved You."

Savage Garden went on hiatus late last year, claiming they weren't breaking up.

(This story was updated at 6:47 p.m. ET Friday, October 5, 2001.)