Metz - II - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Metz - II

by Steve Reynolds Rating:10 Release Date:2015-05-04

It’s hard to believe that Sub Pop has been in existence for over 25 years now. This is a label synonymous with the vanguard of American alternative bands, which has showcased some of the most important groups of their generation: Nirvana, Mudhoney, Soundgarden, to name but a few.

It’s true to say that the label was close to going under more than once but over the last decade they broadened their portfolio to include such acts as Avi Buffalo, The Postal Service, and terse comics Flight of the Concords. Recently there has been a return of the blood, sweat and tears, of the plaid-shirted men wrestling with a love of cathartic, discordant noise that popularised the label's early days, personified by warlike noiseniks Pissed Jeans and Canadian three-piece Metz.

Metz’s self–titled debut came out in 2012 and shocked you to the core of your gut, such was its visceral, rip-roaring musical power, coupled with songs which told tales of misanthropy, suicide and disaffection. The album divided people but you cannot judge Metz on record. Only when they are in the live arena does their power really shine through.

So three years later, they are back with Metz II, which seamlessly follows on from where their debut left off. Guitarist and vocalist Alex Edkins continues his inexorable onslaught, bassist Chris Slorach beats us with his heavy, thudding basslines, and drummer Hayden Menzies still pounds the skins in constant anger.

The band kills it from the off with ‘Acetate’, a pummelling opening salvo packed with punchy, heavy guitar and a bassline that nags away like a bee stuck in your cranium. Edkins is quick out of the blocks, barking orders, shifting constantly, keeping us on our toes and ensuring that we sit up and take notice of what the album is about to give us. 

This is an album of rude awakenings. It’s an uneasy listen at times, but that’s what makes it so compelling. The constant bellicose guitar, drums and bass never let up at all. They keep coming back and beating you with a shitty stick. Take ‘Spit You Out’, almost five minutes of your life you won’t get back, ripped to the hilt in anger, heavy lurching melody, and a maelstrom of dissonance, layered noise and power.

To the uninitiated this album might be a step too far because of its lean anger and het-up angst, but when you look behind the noise and hear the clean lines of melody, such as on ‘Landfill’, then it’s not too difficult to understand why Metz are so highly revered. Metz II is a stonking follow-up to their debut. The power and bulletproof sound the band has produced is nothing short of fucking great.  Nice one Metz, it’s good to have you back in the fold.

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