II - Rolling Stone
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Toronto punks step up the dirt and fury, do Kurt proud


METZ Band Photo

Sub Pop


Countless bands have spent the years since Kurt Cobain’s death recycling his poppiest ideas; Metz, with their 2012 debut, announced themselves as the torchbearers of his gnarliest punk-rock instincts. True to those instincts, on II, the trio has taken its sound – think In Utero with zero apologies, Black Flag brawling Big Black, the Jesus Lizard and Mary Chain – in an even less polished and accessible direction. The record twitches with the flying-off-the-rails urgency of the band’s live shows as Metz sandblasts the industrial precision of their first album into a nastier, more shambolic attack. They’ve gone darker, too. A self-professed “massive pessimist” who lost loved ones over the past few years, singer-guitarist Alex Edkins flirts with full-on nihilism, screaming of end times and being “like a bug lying on its back.” But Metz’s genius, like Nirvana’s, is their ability to embed hooks in even the most abrasive onslaughts, and express emotion that, as fever-pitched as it gets, is always irreproachably honest. Countless bands play at grunge angst, but as Edkins shrieks on “I.O.U.”: “I ain’t got time to pretend.”

In This Article: Metz


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