METZ: Strange Peace

Strange Peace
(Sub Pop Records)

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Since their debut in 2012, METZ have shown no signs of slowing down. Strange Peace is no different.

“Mess of Wires” gets right into the action with heavy, ceaseless drumming, and an assault of guitar and bass. If you can make out the words, vocalist, Alex Edkins sings of “cannibal silence” and fading light. The refrains have some brief, but ear catching harmonies while the lyrics and instrumentals both have a lot of texture. Its outro descends into feedback and chaos, and quickly into the next track, “Drained Lake.”

“Drained Lake” moves quickly, and has just the right amount of discord. Its speed and repetitiveness during the verses is by no means boring, and it channels the first line, “forever getting nowhere.” There are some more ear catching backing vocals here, obscured and warbled as they are.

“Cellophane” is appropriately a bit clearer, and even a bit slower. “Caterpillar” will test your noise tolerance. Be patient. There’s something lurking and trying to get out from underneath that incessant strumming. “Lost in the Blank City” follows in the same vein for the first few moments, but then ascends to something greater.

“Mr. Plague” is a real head banger and a stand out track. “Sink” follows and stands out too, but for opposite reasons. It’s the first slower track. Its steady beat and rising noise ensure that it’s just as intense as anything else on the album.

“Escalator Teeth” is one of the cleanest tracks, and even has hints of a Suicide (the band) sound. It’s short, but the opening line, “machine-like repetition,” epitomizes at least part of METZ’s aesthetic.

Sometimes with the sheer volume of their music it’s easy to forget that METZ is only a three piece. This album channels the intensity and high energy of the band’s live shows from start to finish. One listen to Strange Peace might have you starting a solo circle pit in your own living room.

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About Samantha Blackwood

Hi, I'm a Canadian human with an undying love for live music and the works of dead writers. I write music reviews, book reviews, random literature related musings, short fiction, and more.
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