Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Metric's Fantasies

Metric's Old World Underground, Where Are You Now? was one of the defining records of my college period. I must have put "Combat Baby" on every other mixtape I made in 2003, and "Calculation Theme" and its cryptic lyrics somehow expressed the misalignment I was feeling as I fumbled my way through those years. Their next album was a little lukewarm, and while Emily Haines' solo effort was moving, it obviously didn't have the energy I was missing.  Their latest record, Fantasies, is exactly what I've been waiting for.

Emily Haines is at her best when she's a little bit of a tease and a little bit of a smart ass.  Her salty disposition is perfect in songs like "Satellite Mind" and "Stadium Love", where she completely owns her vampy lead role.  "Help I'm Alive" and "Gimme Shelter" serve as the very catchy pop gems you'd expect on a Metric album.  But where I think the band shines is on the down tempo, more thoughtful tracks.  "Collect Call" is a standout, centered around feelings of longing for someone but this time coming from a more confident person.

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