Album Review // DMA’S ‘For Now’
Sydney’s Britpop revivalists triumph on their sophomore effort, For Now.
Here is it. DMA’S second album, For Now at long last. It feels like we have been waiting forever since their 2016 release Hills End.
The band have proven their dominance in the live music scene in every corner of the globe over the last few years. And their Brit-pop-rock referencing sound has resonated strong with their fast growing fan base. To add to their collection, they give us twelve new songs that showcase their ability to push their creative boundaries, refine their already profound sound and prove their spot on the list as one of the best bands around.
From the beginning when the title track For Now charges in, oozing with attitude and guts, DMA’S demand our attention. Guitars are thrown right at you and vocals drawl out to perfection. What we learn early on is that this album will keep you guessing. After track one you think they would keep building on that momentum. But in fact, they glide on in with familiar track Dawning, blending rolling guitar riffs and soothing vocal arrangements. We hear their potential amplifying with arena bound tracks like Time & Money, then side swipe us with catchy breaks in Warsaw.
Bearing their vulnerabilities is transparent what becomes this album’s strong point. It’s just three guys sharing their experiences on heart ache and tough times. But their confidence in being more emotive and more open in their songwriting shows a maturity and thoughtful step for the band. Tracks like In The Air and Break Me pull on those heart strings. Whereas Lazy Love harbours classic Aussie rock sensibilities that resonate with scorching summer days and drinks in hand.
This album doesn’t linger, elements are succinct and bold. It feels very well thought out and considered. As The End is presented as track five, you assume it would be the ideal song to close on, but why be so obvious?
The second half of the album spices things up and is a bit of a bag of all-sorts. Drum beats on Do I Need You Know? is something new from the trio but they get away with it by placing huge euphoric chorus in. Opening with gritty guitars is united with 70’s summer time nostalgia which is completely unexpected.
As we slide into Health and Emily Whyte they show us how keeping it simple is golden. As much as we appreciate the explosions and fireworks they create at times, these guys get how to harness that power and create pure magic with an acoustic guitar and warm vocals.
Overall, the guys did good, very good in fact. I thought I knew their formula and what to expect from DMA’S but as they have released each single over the last few months, and as I listened through the album as a whole I can say that I’m impressed. Totally compelling, it shows us something fresh without being excessive and most importantly has substance. The guys have cemented their place in music with this album, and their domination will continue to rise.