Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Metric-Synthetica ALBUM REVIEW

Metric are an alternative rock/pop band from Toronto, Canada featuring lead singer Emily Haines (who is also a member of Broken Social Scene). Metric's style comes from lots of deep basslines, piercing guitar leads, pretty synths, and pumping drums, along with Emily Haines' signature vocals.  They are most known for their seminal album, Fantasies.

Synthetica was produced by the bands guitarist, Jimmy Shaw (who is also a member of Broken Social Scene). As for the overall sound, they basically took it in the direction they did with Fantasies. Alternative dance-y rock with some deeper meanings and personal stories thrown in for substance. According to front-woman Emily, Synthetica is "about forcing yourself to confront what you see in the mirror when you finally stand still long enough to catch a reflection. Synthetica is about being able to identify the original in a long line of reproductions. It's about what is real vs what is artificial".

Synthetica opens up with a pretty glossy and reverb-heavy synth section while Emily Haines talking about how messed up she is. But how she's just like the rest of us.
The next track, Youth Without Youth, was the first song to drop from this album. It got me excited. It's a great song and it sounds like typical Metric to me. Emily's lyrics here are great by the way. They show how destructive young people can be when we have "fun".
Another highlight for me was the song "Lost Kitten". Which sounds really new and refreshing to me. Emily Haines is singing in this falsetto of hers and its a really catchy, poppy, love song. It sounds like I would've heard it on their album Grow Up And Blow Away. I also laughed out loud at the lyric "I was lookin' for a hooker when I found you." How romantic.
The title track here, Synthetica, is probably one of their best songs in my opinion. It reminds me of their debut album just because of how youthful it is. Its kinda hard NOT to hum along to it. It pretty much sums up the album's meaning
The guest vocals by Lou Reed on the song The Wanderlust ruin the song for me a bit. They just come from left-field and they're really unexpected. If you listen to it, you'll know what I mean. Other than that, I guess its a good song...?
Other than that stuff, there isn't really anything impressive or new or super creative here that stands out to me.

Synthetica somehow brings together Metric's sounds, both new and old, and mashes them in a pot and then feed us this familiar tasting concoction. If you're new to Metric, this is a pretty accessible album and you could get into this fine. But the question lies: Is this album as good as Fantasies? not really. It's got a really great message and inspiration behind it. And it's decent but I don't see myself returning to much on here. Overall, I would say to maybe check it out if you love Metric or just power-pop in general. You can find something good here.

Score: 5/10

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