METZ Automat Sub Pop
On paper, there’s something counter-intuitive about METZ releasing an odds-and-ends album; records that suggest an artist taking a moment’s pause and reflecting on the story so far. Inertia, you’d imagine, does not come easily to the Toronto noiseniks – all three of their full-lengths to date rattle along at a blistering pace. Long-standing fans will be relieved to discover, then, that despite its cobbled-together nature (it’s comprised of early rarities and non-album singles) Automat plays out every bit as heavily as the rest of the METZ catalogue.
The first half of the album is a run through early singles from 2009 and 2010. These serve as a stark reminder of just how boldly the trio announced themselves back then; the bone-crushing Soft Whiteout teeters on the verge of sludge metal, while the guitars are screechingly unrefined on Lump Sums. On the back half, the band venture into more experimental territory, especially on the manic Can’t Understand and brooding closer Eraser.
Automat, like so many releases of this nature, is probably a fans-only affair, but those already on board with METZ will find this every bit as indispensable as their LPs proper.