Feist experiments with Metals

Generally artists begin to experiment once they have a couple successful albums under their belts. Canadian Leslie Feist—usually referred to as Feist—has definitely made some noticeable changes in her sound since her 2007 release, The Reminder. She hasn’t lost her powerful yet graceful sound, instead Metals is an experimental journey that is moodier and more dynamic than her previous work.

Metals is the combining of a soothing mellow sound, dynamic instrumental outbursts and other eccentric elements. With guitar riffs and orchestral instrumentation popping up unexpectedly throughout the album, it is all about toying with a folk-pop sound that grows and swells into rapid-fire excitement and experimentation.

The album packs a punch from the very beginning with “The Bad in Each Other,” which has the perfect proportions of powerful vocals and raw instrumentation. The second and third tracks, “Graveyard” and “Caught in a Long Wind,” are so much mellower and soothing, which is an extremely attention grabbing contrast from the opening track.

“A Commotion,” highlights Feist’s powerful vocal ability and pairs it against a fast paced instrumentation and a chorus of grim, shouting men. “Anti-Pioneer” is another track that took me by surprise. Feist’s lilting lyrics become an instrument of their own. She vocalizes along with the musical backdrop, and the music itself is really emphasized this way. This track also features gorgeous brass and string instrumentation.

“How Come You Never Go There,” is an achy ballad punctuated by a rhythmic and jazzy instrumentation. Though this track sounds more like the typical Feist sound, it definitely has a moodier tone than that of her sweet “1 2 3 4.”

The most interesting and wonderful part about Metals is that each song is a unique and individual experience. With tracks ranging from powerful to bluesy to whimsical, it’s clear that Feist has been expanding and adapting. This variety is what makes listening through Metals really fascinating.

WPGU Music Staff Rating: W-P-G

Key Tracks: “The Bad In Each Other” “A Commotion” and “How Come You Never Go There”

RIYL: St. Vincent, Lykke Li, and Cat Power.

W = Poor
W-P = Fair
W-P-G = Great
W-P-G-U = An instant classic!


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