Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Canadian Punk Darlings Metz Raise Pulses With Blistering Alt-Rock Gem ‘Superior Mirage’

The ever-indistinguishable Metz round off their tantalising slew of single releases in the lead-up to their long-awaited fifth album ‘Up on Gravity Hill’. Comprised of Alex Edkins (Vocals and Guitar), Chris Slorach (Bass), and Hayden Menzies (Drums), their newest single ‘Superior Mirage’ is guaranteed to raise hellish mosh-pits at festivals and sweat-heavy live music venues everywhere.

The band's uncompromising stance on musical creativity (seemingly reinvented with every album release) has earned them a reputation and notoriety set quite apart from most other guitar-based rock groups. 

Since Metz’s formation, music press and publications everywhere have related the band to almost every subgenre: alt-rock, post-hardcore, garage-rock, punk, post-punk, noise-rock, noise-punk, and invariably a few more obscure labels have slipped into print over the years. With their latest offering, ‘Superior Mirage’, the group now dives headfirst into that post-punk quintessence with a smothering of shoegaze inspiration.

The track’s driving force comes from Edkins’ seemingly endless guitar riff, an anxious and hypnotic earworm phrase that bounds through most of the four-minute run time. Ear-catching won’t do this riff justice, and Edkins' strained vocal snarls add a worthy bite and edge to an already impressive offering. Menzies’ drums are the track’s propellant, bouncing along with the circling guitar line, and Slorach’s bass provides a low-end drone that heightens the bottled, explosive energy to new levels.

This combined energy erupts in the chorus, which moves from this rotating, mesmeric anxiety to a fully-fledged shoegaze dreamscape. Waves of stratospheric distortion bend around the long, drawn-out harmonies, while the low-end thud and crash of drum and bass maintain the established tempo.

Superior Mirage’ maintains a monster duality that provides an inspired attack and release dynamic; tense and expanding in the verse, explosive in the chorus. It’s arguably one of the most exciting Metz tracks I’ve had the pleasure of listening to, and that’s saying something.

If this final single should signal anything to long-time fans, it's that Metz are far from bored with their relentless exploration of musical boundaries. 

Harry Meenagh

Image: ‘Superior Mirage’ Official Single Cover 

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