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COLUMN: Short List



I saw Fidlar open for Metz at the beginning of this past summer at the Union Transfer in Philly. I don’t claim to know much about any philly scene but what I could see was as clear as the green plastic of a forty of Mickey’s – these kids were ferocious about Fidlar and most had left by the time Metz came on. Fidlar – a beam of hope for kids who liked the Hives when they were in middle school, who poured one out for Jay Reatard a year late, who sent you Together Pangea links at the witching hour – were a good time, and their boyish, could-use-another-beer-ad- infinitum charm alone was enough to collar any crowd. Their songs are catchy and follow a mold, as most catchy songs do, this mold being an especially polarizing archetype: the surf-skate-pentatonic-punk, loud-loud-loud, doo-wop falsetto here- and-there kind of garage rock that’s been around longer than the DS-1.

Metz, on the other hand, harken a discordant, disarming quality of a punk sound long forgotten (or, in any case, long appropriated by pre-cum shoegazers, Sonic Youth fanboys, and bands that made it weirder, like Hella and Tera Melos). Metz’s sound is part post-punk, Entertainment-era Gang of Four, part noise-rock, Head-era the Jesus Lizard, and, without a doubt, pinches inspiration from Minutemen left and right. But where fellow Canadians, Viet Cong, delve into usual baritone and dance territories, Metz keeps it howling on the highway.

Yet something about the sound came off as a little less catchy to the Fidlar fans, used to point-blank-dumbness, self-deprecating one-liners. All the pretty septum- piercings left and all the sweaty skin that had a problem with you hit the ground punching. Is that what punk is about? I’m not really sure, but I had almost-an- asthma-attack-fun, sweat through all my clothes, and had good beer ever after. Metz is ballsy, smart, and arousing like exciting punk music should be. This was a long-winded anecdote – for a list of exciting contemporary punk-tinged music to give you a boner, look no further:

https://soundcloud.com/hardlyartrecords/protomartyr-dope-cloud-2 This band made me read Patrick Hamilton’s Hangover Square, what the fuck.

http://brucematerial.bandcamp.com/track/summary-execution A very handy discovery, a very fast handy.

http://bluesmiley.bandcamp.com/album/ok They took loud-quiet-loud and made quiet-loud-nod.


By Maxwell Gontarek on Oct. 10, 2015, 3:01 a.m.

#Philly #Material #ShortList #Metz #Protomartyr #Review #BlueSmiley #Punk #Fidlar