Published Jul 09, 2019Automat's 12 tracks — worthy of a legit noise complaint — give new meaning to the term "summer bangers."
METZ are well-respected for their abrasive ruckus of atmospheric punk. This collection of non-album singles, B-sides and rarities serves as a reminder of how skilfully they've crafted and delivered it with unwavering power over the past decade.
Tracks are full of short fuses, live wires and rusty edges, driven by dynamic rhythms that pummel and guitars that grate, inflected with fierce feedback and maddened vocals. The live METZ sound — a mind-bending experience that shreds and restores — is sacred. Automat feels like a gift to fans that value this and all things visceral, rough and raw.
The journey starts with the three pre-debut seven-inch singles that forged the band's signature sound. "Soft Whiteout" chugs to irregular time, strewn with hard stops, as guitars drawl and sprawl, careening into a wash of raw noise that spills from one speaker to the next. The epic "Ripped on the Fence" loses itself in a sea of static space rock, while riffs stretch and hang on companion track "Dry Up." "Automat" amps up the post-punk, creating a retro sci-fi feel with robotic chanting.
These unapologetically authentic offerings are balanced with several from the band's comparatively tidier self-titled LP era. The unholy marriage of mayhem and hookery on the infectiously melodic "Dirty Shirt" and "Leave Me Out" begs to be bowed to.
This trend continuing on the latest single here ("Pure Auto," "Eraser") and beyond (Strange Peace) suggests METZ are unlikely to lose their edge any time soon. (Sub Pop)