TRACK LIFE: METZ – “Wasted”
Welcome to Track Life, a new daily column in which Jacob Knight shares what he thinks to be the best in music, both new and old.
One band this new generation of “indie rockers” hasn’t been completely able to recreate is Nirvana. While LA punks No Age have come close (at least in terms of sheer attitude), Paul McCartney only highlighted how dead Kurt Cobain’s vision of anti-corporate rock is when he wrongheadedly fronted the remaining band members this past December. In short, the nihilistic majesty of Nirvana’s original Seattle grunge seemed like it was simply a long-forgotten dream.
Enter METZ. A brutally heavy trio from Toronto, they produce thunder, fuzz and bile in equal measure. Their self-titled debut (out last year via Sub Pop) delivered just over thirty minutes of seriously heavy rock the likes of which this generation has been failing to produce outright. Starting with a violent cascade of drums and delayed pedal effects on “Headache” and ending with waves of droning, repeated distortion on “Negative Space”, it’s a work of raw, unbridled aggression. This isn’t music for a dinner party (or any type of party, really), but rather battle calls of drunken rage for that drive home from work after a day of taking shit from your awful, pig-headed boss. It’s music doused in salt and booze and sweat and rough, rough sexuality.
The most Cobain sounding cut from the record is undoubtedly “Wasted”, which starts with a whining bit of feedback that gives way to a riff sounding as if it were played off of Kurt’s trademark switched string Jaguar itself. And while the “wall of sound” production is more reminiscent of Steve Albini’s work with The Jesus Lizard, Alex Edkins’ piercing howl cuts through the sludge with misanthropic clarity. This is brute force translated to sonics and should come with a simple warning: “do not play if prone to psychotic fits”. If this is METZ’s Bleach, I can’t wait to see what their equivalent of Nevermind (not to mention In Utero) is going to sound like.