With an energy that seldom leaves the realm of late-1980s punk, Canadian rockers Metz aren’t exactly reinventing the wheel, but they do want to take said wheel and set it on fire.

Metz seems to follow a few simple rules when writing their music: make it fast, make it loud, make it heavy. Some songs don’t necessarily blaze speed-wise, but nothing they’re released makes you want to sit back and relax. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that their general blueprint for creating music is to take Nirvana’s “Territorial Pissings” and push it to the edge. They employ the simplistic four-chord writing style of those grunge legends and harness the grit of the group’s heaviest tunes.

That kind of style doesn’t lead to a ton of growth from album to album, but that’s not the point of a band like Metz. When Alabama Shakes released their latest record, it was a clear movement and departure from their debut chart topper. Metz is not about that kind of artistic development. With the basic goal of fucking shit up in mind, they do not disappoint.

After a handful of single releases, the band found themselves receiving loads of attention from blogs and festivals, and their self-titled debut album, released in 2012, earned them sell-out crowds on tour. With the release of their sophomore album, II, the Canadians come on with a fresh set of tracks that are tense, aggressive, and almost therapeutic.

“Acetate” opens up the album, and its line “She’s barely breathing” sets the tone for the tension the band brings to the LP. Though most of their tracks never venture beyond the common rock time signatures, their rhythmic cohesion brings a different dynamic to each song.

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“Nervous System” really delivers that driving aggression. It is one of those tracks that can be found pretty regularly on a Metz album, one on which you can’t understand a single lyric. Not that overly provocative or prophetic messages can be found in their music if you hunt for them. That’s not the point of this band. The lyrics do have depth, but they primarily serve as another instrument that pushes the intensity level.

I’m fine with the idea of not really progressing your music from album to album. Why change something that is already great? And Metz’s II is great. You can put it on, listen to it from start to finish, and feel completely satisfied by the time it’s over. It doesn’t really differentiate itself from their debut, but it’s a good album either way. As they go on, they might want to grow more, but at this point, I’m just glad to have another album from Metz that hits hard and doesn’t disappoint.

Metz doesn’t have a club stop in LA on their upcoming North American tour, but fans can check out their set at FYF Fest in August. Listen to the album and let it pump you up for their end-of-summer visit to LA!

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