Album review: Metric’s “Fantasies”

The following was originally posted on MutedMag.com.

There is a new discotheque vibe pulsing from Canada and its name is Fantasies. Unlike anything they’ve made in their previous three albums, Metric has made a full album that is worthy of filling large venues and providing back-beats for eccentric remixes. It’s themed exactly what it’s named; full of swirling fantasies and curious daydreams. Front woman Emily Haines has clearly taken the creative lead on this record, all the while acting as the album’s vulnerable protagonist in each song, crying out for love, approval, and acceptance, with a tinge of selfishness, greed, and newfound strength.

With “Fantasies,” Haines and company explore the world of faster beats. While their past albums have had harder rock progressions and catchy choruses, this album has really been what’s coming for the last three years since Live It Out. Haines’ lyrics are just as dead on, however they are much easier to read while they’re twirling between her synth notes.

Starting out with “Help I’m Alive,” Haines begins as a vulnerable, quivering girl who is crying out for love, but by the end of the song she is already stronger. Her voice loops with itself, as if a duet. This song could be easily remixed into something of a hit on the dance floor.

“Sick Muse” is a cry for attention, as if Haines is a young girl flipping through a magazine looking at the models, thinking she isn’t good enough. She coos “money is a sick muse,” a realization into what makes these people tick. The guitar swerves behind her as if it were her best friend who secretly loves her, it has her back. It won’t let her fall. This track establishes the record as a collection of fantasies; each song is something similar and different in want and need at the same time.


“Satellite Mind” is a hypnotizing loop that could easily be the next huge anthem for anything MTV, Gossip Girl or Skins.

These past two songs are probably the most stand out ones on the record, aside from “Collect Call” and the rock anthem, “Stadium Love.” Other fantasies the group discover occur such on the self-explanatory “Twilight Galaxy,” a slow space odyssey, “Gold Guns Girls,” which is a reflection on greed and selfish sexual desires, “Gimmie Sympathy,” twirls around a metaphor of a historic choice, “Front Row,” which details a drunken fantasy of a model who’s star-struck, and finally “Blindness,” a creepy tale of a blindfolded victim who’s trying to be the hero. These songs are definitely different compared to past Metric songs in the sense that they have no visible Canadian base to them, but could this be a step in creative adult fiction for Haines?

While this record is nothing like the last three, and will not have the classic tunes to outlive it like “Monster Hospital,” “Succ-Sexy” or “Poster of a Girl,” it is one that will grab the attention of their fans and find thousands of new ones to grab just as hard, for the pure motion of putting it out in today’s society of teenaged internet-based paranoia and greed. But hey, that means it will go far. The album will hopefully end up remixed, acclaimed for a glam synth and Haines’ lyrics, and something to put on when needing a boost of confidence, but that’s as far as it will go.

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