“Who would you rather be: The Beatles or The Rolling Stones?” asks Metric frontwoman Emily Haines during Gimme Sympathy, an electric, soaring, synth-driven single from Fantasies, the band’s 2009 album.
You can form your own opinion when they play in London on 23 and 24 May, but to our ears the Canadian indie-rockers don’t sound a great deal like either of these 60s legends.
Not that this is a problem. It’s quite the opposite in fact: Metric songs are more likely to feature pacey drums and synths than memorable guitar moments and there’s a definite electro, new wave edge to their music. It’s more Friendly Fires than Fab Four.
Metric aren’t a new band – and they have pedigree, having enjoyed significant success at home. They picked up Alternative Album of the Year at this year’s JUNO Awards, a kind of Canadian equivalent of the Brits, and their last album went to number eight in the charts there.
Can they replicate that success here in the UK? If musical talent and flair have anything to do with it, they probably should. Because whether bashing a synthesiser, holding the microphone aloft or simply dancing around on stage, Haines provides a suitably charismatic focal point for the band’s shows.
But even if they don’t quite manage to scale the heights hinted at by Stadium Love, a track tailor made to please huge crowds, Metric are seriously talented and definitely worth seeing. Catch them at Koko in Camden on 23 May or the Shepherd’s Bush Empire on 24 May. Or at both, if you’re really into them.
(Don’t fancy Metric? You can choose from loads of other gig tickets over on lastminute.com.)