(Metric Music International)
Record Review by Amber Henson
Drool... new Metric album...drool...
I’ll admit it: I had been fantasizing about Fantasies. I’ve been waiting patiently since 2006, when Metric’s 2005 album Live It Out began to feel not so new anymore. There was a brief glimmer of hope when lead singer Emily Haines’ solo project, Knives Don’t Have Your Back, with The Soft Skeleton came out in ’06, but it turned out to be nothing like Metric. Still Haines' beautiful voice, but placed in much darker environment. No dancing to be had there.
But I’m still glad that that album was made. I think there’s always something to be said for a band that’s strong enough to be cool with their lead singer wandering off and doing their own thing. When they come back together, the singer has gotten it out of their system, and can return, their soul lighter.
“Help, I’m Alive” is the opening track and first single from Fantasies and sweet Moses is it good. The song flows in and out of drama, in and out of pure headbanging joy, in and out of industrial electronica and addicting pop. There’s an acoustic version out there also, which highlights Haines' terrific vocals.
The rest of the album lives up to the first track. While the second album was a terrific sophomore effort, Fantasies takes Metric back to its roots a bit, with songs that are so danceable I have to restrain myself to stay seated at my desk when listening at the office. But it’s not just the melodies; Haines’ lyrics are biting, lewd, and clever all at once. “All the gold and the guns and the girls in the world couldn’t get you off,” she proclaims in the aptly named “Gold Guns Girls”.
I’ve always admired guitarist Jimmy Shaw, bassist Josh Winstead and drummer Joules Scott-Key for their steady beats, their experimental attitudes, and, frankly, for staying out of Haines’ way when she’s on stage. Shaw again produced the album, like their last, and did a terrific job of it. Things are put together flawlessly. Put simply, Fantasies is craveable.
Metric - Live - March 23, 2006
Metric - Live It Out
Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton - Live - January 23, 2007
More by this writer:
Thao / Sister Suvi - Live - April 29, 2009
Mates of State - Live - April 23, 2009
Pronto - All is Golden
Gossip Girl - OMFGG [soundtrack]