Synthetica by Metric
When I first heard Combat Baby back in 2003, I knew I’d discovered something great. Raw, charged, and, great to sing to, Old World Underground, Where are you Now? remains a classic in my repertoire. Ever since, I’ve been following Metric’s releases, enjoying the progression of their sound. With an increasing complexity in lyric, melody, and harmony, I had great expectation for their 2012 release. With their 2007 album Grow up and Blow Away holding the crown as my favourite thus far, I was hoping Synthetica would continue to impress. When I heard the single Youth Without Youth, I was intrigued but unsure if it would push its way to the top. Then I got around to listening to the album as a whole, and everything changed.
Although their first release was a good intro to the album, Speed the Collapse does a better job at capturing the feel of the album in its entirety. Catchy, fast paced, and melodic, it’s a song that’s great for driving and singing. If you’re in the mood to get pumped up, then this is certainly a good track to start with.
The album artwork is also impressive. With all the lyrical lettering having been printed backwards, it makes for an interactive auditory and tactile experience. Including a reflective piece that can be used to flip the letters, even the packing highlights the sophistication and complexity of the album.
I have to admit that personally I am a greater fan of some of the more obscure tracks. Enjoying the synth, base, and weight to this album, Dreams so Real may take the crown as my favourite. Starting with a heavy, retro-inspired beat, Emily Haines’s rapturous vocals kick in, and the song begins to build. Taking on a chant-like quality, the music grows, layers build, and I am urged to turn up the volume. With witty, sarcastic lyrics, it’s hard not to chant along: “The scream becomes a yawn”. Feel like singing along? Then you’ve GOT to hear this.