Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
Buy On
  1. Kerrang!
    Oct 3, 2014
    100
    The Physical world is a perfect storm of groovy punk. [13 Sep 2014, p.54]
  2. They have returned hungry and wired to shake us out of our digital comas.
  3. Sep 5, 2014
    90
    The Physical World is a tremendous, rollicking, riotous blast of an album.
  4. Alternative Press
    Sep 3, 2014
    90
    The Physical World is a triumphant statement that the two musicians have moved forward artistically. [Oct 2014, p.97]
  5. Sep 8, 2014
    85
    The Physical World confirms everything we'd hoped for: DFA still know how to produce unstoppable energy, they still know how to push a bass guitar to its full capacity and they still know how to inject tonnes of fun into not just their product, but the wider spectrum of music itself--and there's not much more you can ask for, especially after so long.
  6. Sep 16, 2014
    80
    As it stands, it’s still one of the year’s finest and worth the wait.
  7. Sep 11, 2014
    80
    A lot has happened in 10 years, but DFA’s approach to making ferocious music certainly hasn’t.
  8. Sep 11, 2014
    80
    Sebastien Grainger’s vocals show the benefit of spending the last few years touring with quieter bands, and listen closely for the subtle analog synth touches Jesse Keeler’s added behind his trademark wall-of-fuzz-bass sound.
  9. Sep 11, 2014
    80
    Don't call it a comeback, call it a triumphant return of the conquering heroes, and next time you want to rock unapologetically, this album ought to be among the first options.
  10. Sep 4, 2014
    80
    Like its predecessor, The Physical World is crammed with loud, fast, short songs.
  11. Sep 3, 2014
    80
    One blast of The Physical World and BANG, the doubt is gone.
  12. 75
    This album succeeds in ways You’re A Woman never could have, and for that, it requires commendation.
  13. Sep 9, 2014
    75
    With The Physical World, Death From Above 1979 both embraces its dance-punk roots and transcends them.
  14. Oct 6, 2014
    70
    Taken on their individual merits there's nothing particularly 'wrong' with the 11 songs that form DFA 1979's long-awaited second album, but altogether there's few standout moments and the tight, self-imposed confines of DFA 1979's sound shackles them to the floor.
  15. Uncut
    Sep 25, 2014
    70
    It's a strong return, though bad luck for the copycatting Royal Blood and DZ Deathrays who'd been counting on their obsolescence. [Nov 2014, p.72]
  16. Sep 15, 2014
    70
    Although the album loses some steam in its second side, it is light-years away from disappointing. Instead, it is proof that this band has aged well.
  17. Sep 11, 2014
    70
    With The Physical World, Grainger and Keeler haven’t entirely scratched the itch they instigated a decade ago. But they’ve learned to live with the burn, and that’s the next best thing.
  18. Sep 9, 2014
    70
    When they do get it right, as they frequently do on The Physical World, it does provide you with more than a simple nostalgia fix.
  19. Sep 5, 2014
    70
    They're still delivering that winning blend of dance-punk energy with classic-rock aplomb, and it still feels plenty fresh. [Sep/Oct 2014, p.74]
  20. 70
    This is a wonderfully assured comeback record, but it’s also precisely more of the same.
  21. Nov 6, 2014
    67
    The Physical World proves that not only is 2004 just far back enough to merit nostalgia, but that this return opens our first portal back.
  22. Sep 17, 2014
    60
    Though not as earth-shattering as their live shows, it’s a short, sharp shock nonetheless.
  23. Sep 17, 2014
    60
    At times The Physical World feels like the real deal, at others a pale imitation of a too-distinct aesthetic.
  24. Mojo
    Sep 12, 2014
    60
    This is an exciting second act, tempered by the occasionally predictable moment. [Oct 2014, p.87]
  25. Sep 9, 2014
    60
    Returning a decade later, they're still crushing violent, angular riffs (see the hellacious "Government Trash"), but they're also writing catchier songs that bring out conventional rock influences.
  26. 60
    While by no means a bad album, this fails to stand out in the way its predecessor did.
  27. Sep 3, 2014
    60
    From opener ‘Cheap Talk’ onwards, this is never anything but the purest DFA1979, served flaming hot. Which was just fine back when--but it’s definitely a disappointment to not hear the band even hinting at an expansion of their stripped-raw sound, just deep-groove bass and heavily hit drums.
  28. 58
    If the lyrical substance isn’t quite there, at least the riffs are.
  29. Q Magazine
    Sep 3, 2014
    40
    On too much of The Physical World they sound like a pale imitation of themselves. [Oct 2014, p.108]
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 44 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 39 out of 44
  2. Negative: 3 out of 44
  1. Sep 10, 2014
    10
    If you're expecting anything too different from Death From Above 1979 first album "You're a woman i'm a machine" don't even listen to thisIf you're expecting anything too different from Death From Above 1979 first album "You're a woman i'm a machine" don't even listen to this record. That said, there are some slight differences between this and the first album. First off, you can tell It's a little bit "Popier", mainly because of the structure most of the songs have. Also the synth sounds are a lot more present, though they're always in the background, mostly used as "fillers".
    Putting those two things aside this band is the same one that split almost 10 years ago, they still have their fabulous bass riffs and their trashy singing style.
    Full Review »
  2. Sep 9, 2014
    10
    This is an exciting album, full of the punk rock-dance vibe grooves we expect. It's also beautifully arranged. Instead of going 100 milesThis is an exciting album, full of the punk rock-dance vibe grooves we expect. It's also beautifully arranged. Instead of going 100 miles per hour start to finish, Cheap Talk starts us with a head bobbing rocker, and then propels us to full speed with Right On Frankenstein. Virgins evens it back out, and the rest of the album follows as a survey of mountains and valleys along the road. It's worth it in the end, where the closing track The Physical World takes us to wonderful dark place that's totally off the map. Full Review »
  3. Feb 24, 2015
    10
    Since it had been a long time since Death from Above 1979 released their last album, I was rather surprised to find something new under theirSince it had been a long time since Death from Above 1979 released their last album, I was rather surprised to find something new under their name when I arrived at the record store. I loved their first album, so I figured that it made sense to give their second a try. Other than Government Trash which is probably not their best effort, there is not a single song on this record which isn't absolutely perfect for people such as myself who love tunes with an attitude. Crystal Ball is a masterpiece, Nothin' Left is close to perfect and while I don't like the slightly poppy sound in the chorus of Trainwreck 1979, it is hard to dismiss it. I have a rather large collection of music which includes Led Zeppelin, Metallica and Megadeth, but I find myself returning to this album way too often to say anything other than it is a must-buy. Full Review »