Music Wednesday: Metric and Hello From Reno

Haven’t done one of these in far too long. Which is doubly bad because I’ve been getting more new music than ever before. I have enough music at this point to do a Music (Some)day twice a week all year. Or close to it. Don’t count on that actually happening, though. I’m just saying, I could. It’s become more an issue of a crippling range of choices rather than lack of choice in what to post.

This week, two bands at relative opposite ends of the fame spectrum. They’ve got nothing to do with each other; just both on my mind this week.

Hello From Reno

Hello From Reno

Hello From Reno, despite the name, are from LA. They opened for Headlights on Sunday night and I enjoyed their set so much I ran back to get their album immediately – turned out to be a self-produced LP that they were selling for $5. I’ve heard it through several times now, and I still quite like it – often bands I like at shows end up not being as good on disc. Definitely will keep them on my radar and hope to see them again before too long. I do apologize for the quality of the picture – the iPhone takes crappy shots in the dark.

Hello From Reno – It Comes and Goes
Hello From Reno – Little Johnny (He’s a Rebel)

Links MP3
MySpace (but don’t go there unless you have some MySpace-happy-making Greasemonkey scripts going on – no, REALLY, I promise, you’ll be sorry…*sigh* You went anyway, didn’t you? Well, don’t say I didn’t warn you.)



Metric is pretty big in the world of indie rock – I judge this by the fact that when they come to LA in June, they’re playing at the Wiltern, a middle-to-large-sized venue, rather than the small clubs that I go to most of the time. As someone pointed out to me, it’s not the Staples Center, but still. I’ve had Metric songs lying around on my hard drive for a couple of years, then finally buckled down to get an album last June or so. Sometime between then and now they’ve zoomed to the top of my favorite band list (as I picked up their earlier albums), getting pretty close to duking it out with Rilo Kiley, even. THAT IS HUGE. But they have a very different sound from RK – a bit harder and more synthy. Emily Haines’ breathy voice contrasts nicely with the band’s driving rhythms and arrangements. If you like Emily’s voice and songwriting, but not so much the band, try Emily’s solo stuff – she does a lot more mellow and acoustic style music under the name Emily Haines and the Soft Skeleton. It doesn’t do as much for me, though.

Their newest album, Fantasies, came out yesterday on disc (the digital version has been available for download since March 31), and I can confidently say it’s one of my favorite releases so far this year. It’s been on repeat since I bought it a couple of weeks ago. It’s a bit softer than their previous disc Live It Out, and probably better balanced. Take a listen – these are the first two songs on the album (I didn’t plan it that way, I swear – “Sick Muse” is my current favorite, and “Help I’m Alive” is the first single).

(note: the two Fantasies songs will take a few seconds longer to buffer – they’re higher quality than most of my rips)

Metric – Help I’m Alive
Metric – Sick Muse

And one old one, just for kicks: Metric – Grow Up and Blow Away (from 2001’s Grow Up and Blow Away)

My second favorite from the new album is actually “Gimme Sympathy,” but the video for it is so cool, I had to include it rather than the MP3. It’s one take, folk. ONE TAKE. See the second video for the making of.

Official Site