METRIC’s Emily Haines sounds more sexy and velvet than ever before as she examines herself, looking for the real her rather than the image she portrays to the world. It explains the album’s Synthetica title, the upside cover picture and that the lyrics and credits are printed backward.
METRIC began as rock fuelled indie with pop sensibility. Here they embrace the latter, an electronic disco vibe that kepts in check by a dark undertow formed by hypnotic, synthesizer beats and lyrics such as, “I’ve got something no pill could ever kill.”
‘Artificial Nocturnes’ belongs in a space movie, a suspenseful buildup to ‘Youth Without Youth’; a vibrant pulse; a Goldfrapp moment. ‘Speed the Collapse’ utilizes an “ah ha ah” refrain that’s not only seductive but also the albums greatest levity. ‘Breathing Under’ keeps my fingers tapping before ‘Lost Kitten’ gets sung like a children’s poem, cute as hell. ‘The Void’, ‘Clone’ are fillers, keeping momentum rather than claiming identity. ‘Wanderlust’ could’ve been the same if it wasn’t for the wonderful addition of Lou Reed on backing vocals. The title track’s full of rhythm with it’s extra dose of rock ‘n roll. At least that’s before the breakdown where Emily becomes a choir girl for variation’s sake. Albeit ironically entitled, ‘Nothing But Time’ makes for a decent closer. Maybe it’s a statement that there’s more great METRIC in our future.
Synthetica is METRIC’s fifth studio album release. It’s glam, pop and rock rolled into one; the sweetest indie pop release i’ve heard since Star’s The Five Ghosts.