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Death From Above - Outrage! Is Now album review

The Toronto cult legends evolve, filthily, popwards

Cover art for Death From Above - Outrage! Is Now album

Infamous more for being CSS’s odd choice of shagging music than for their own cultural impact – their 2005 new rave hit Let’s Make Love And Listen To Death From Above made them household names, in indier households – trunk-nosed Toronto disco punk duo Death From Above (nee 1979) have traded on their cultish mystery since returning from a 10-year studio hiatus with 2014’s second album The Physical World.

So, still on only their third full-length record in 17 years(!), DFA remain a pliable, evolving concept, and Outrage! is an attempt to sprawl in the vague direction of scuzz-rock respectability. Hiring QOTSA producer Eric Valentine has given their bluesy bluster a hint of Josh Homme’s desert Bowie sleaze on tracks like Never Swim Alone, Statues, Caught Up and Moonlight (about singing drummer Sebastien Grainger getting a savage street beating while on tour in Dallas), and nudged the likes of Freeze Me even further into the realm of all-out grit-pop.

There’s still space for the weird bits, though – Nomad is epic emo metal played, from the sound of it, on guitars made of burning asbestos, and the Royal Blood rifforama of NVR 4EVR literally features a shaker containing the ashes of a dead fan.

Outrageous fun.

Mark Beaumont is a music journalist with almost three decades' experience writing for publications including Classic Rock, NME, The Guardian, The Independent, The Telegraph, The Times, Uncut and Melody Maker. He has written major biographies on Muse, Jay-Z, The Killers, Kanye West and Bon Iver and his debut novel [6666666666] is available on Kindle (opens in new tab).