The Outfit

From the opening drum clicks, this debut release from the Outfit hooks you into the headlong pace of "Towns," a song with familiar elements. But rather than trying to mimic the manic and loud-quiet guitar work of recent dance-punk bands, the Outfit presents moments of nuanced introspection that lend a surprising degree of depth. And the quality of the songwriting here is no fluke; the layering of sounds on "The Philistines" is dynamic, allowing the song to breathe and sway. "Bricks," meanwhile, is a bit more biting, but the sheer variety in its roughly three minutes is impressive. Saving the best for last, "What Happened to You" somehow manages to be melancholy, urgent and defiant, couching its emotional fragility in uplifting melodies and invigorating rhythms.

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