Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Metric @ HOB Tomorrow

If it’s even possible, Metric sounds edgier today than they did back in 2003 when vocalist and bandleader Emily Haines fiercely urged us to “fight off the lethargy” in “Combat Baby.” The band has always popped right out of the speakers with stuttered percussion and growling riffs. Yet Fantasies, their fourth album, purrs with a maniacal energy that’s as danceable as ever. The guitar line of “Sick Muse” looks back to Depeche Mode’s “Personal Jesus,” and then adds swagger. True to its name, “Gold Guns Girls” fires like a 24 karat pistol, speeding your heart rate with Joules Scott-Key’s relentless percussion. Fantasies' fast pace is a sure bet for a sweaty, sloppy crowd, but sprawling ballads like “Love is a Place” and “Torture Me” give the Canadian band a second to cool down while Haines showcases her seductive vocals. Dark lyrics cloud the exuberance you might typically find in such danceable music. “If this is the life, why does it feel so good to die today?” questions Haines when she’s not belting, “Help, I’m alive.” Still, as much as Metric renounces being alive, their music is the kind that will surely bring the audience to life. Bear in Heaven open at 8 p.m. tomorrow at the House of Blues (308 Euclid Avenue, 216.523. 2583). Tickets: $20 advance, $23 day of show.

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