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Brooklyn dance-punk survivors !!! still find life in the genre

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In a thoughtful A.V. Club retrospective of early 2000s dance-punk, Reader associate editor Kevin Warwick traced the genre’s flash on the dance floor via the era’s seminal records. “Flash” is an apt word, too—before the aughts came to a close, many of the best practitioners either called it a day (Q and Not U, Death From Above 1979), lost the thread (Hot Hot Heat), or became cheeseballs (Killers). Of the groups still truckin’, none have soldiered on like Brooklyn outfit !!! (cloyingly pronounced “Chk Chk Chk”)—and, yes, that includes LCD Soundsystem, whose ballyhooed farewell and even more extravagant reunion last year have mutated their image like a funhouse-mirror reflection. For a decade now, !!! have reliably dropped a record every two or three years, nudging their rambunctious, nervy, and funk-heavy sound into new crevices. May’s Shake the Shudder (Warp) puts their evolution at the forefront—the music gleams beneath the disco ball, and even as front man Nic Offer forces his voice into its highest ranges, the group produce clean, efficient floor-fillers. The thrum of old !!! bleeds in around the edges, and they retain some of the righteous rage that populated their previous work. While the nimble swagger of “Five Companies” might seem to belie the philosophical crises Offer is singing about, his blunt words focus his rage on, for instance, corporate greed.   v

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