Metric’s relentless pursuit of timeless songwriting and fiercely independent ethos have cemented their place as one of the most essential and ahead-of-the-curve bands of the last two decades. By constantly upping themselves across nine unpredictable and adventurous studio albums, the trailblazing Toronto outfit founded by songwriting and production partners Emily Haines and Jimmy Shaw along with bandmates Joshua Winstead and Joules Scott Key is proof that you can amass an untouchable catalog without ever signing to a major label or changing your lineup. Their latest LP, Formentera II, out October 13 via their label Metric Music International and Thirty Tigers, is a testament to their singular purpose. It stands among their best and most genre-defying work and closes the 18-song cycle started by 2022’s critically acclaimed Formentera.
Working out of the band’s Main Street Studios, they amassed 18 songs that simultaneously encapsulated the outrage and chaos of the societal moment and the universal longing to escape reality. Formentera, an exotic Spanish Balearic island the band had never visited, served as a North Star to envelop these emotions. The band painstakingly sequenced the nine songs that flowed best together to make the first LP of the duology, which was released in July 2022. After debuting Formentera live on the Doomscroller Tour across North America and Mexico, they would revisit the latter half with fresh eyes. When Metric went back to work on the remaining nine tracks, Shaw, along with co-producers Liam O’Neil and Gus van Go, resumed his existing obsession with formative French records like Air’s 10,000 Hz Legend, Daft Punk’s Around the World and Sébastien Tellier's Politics. With this inspiration, and the newfound flexibility to safely travel in 2022, the band decided to finish Formentera II where these influential LPs were recorded: Paris’ Motorbass Studios. In Paris, Metric was reenergized to double down on their own tireless perfectionism to bring the album over the finish line.
"The first part of Formentera started with a huge amount of anxiety and ended in a moment of personal release and freedom,” says Shaw. “But Formentera II takes that escape even further. The back half of Formentera II really takes you off the map completely and you end up in a place in your mind that is blissfully further from reality.”
Formentera II is a testament to the band’s unwavering love for each other and their insatiable desire to push themselves as artists. It’s a wildly experimental release that finds the band going into uncharted territory. It’s both a pleasurable salve for the present moment and a stark reminder of what’s left to do, nine inviting and alive songs forged out of personal upheaval and worldwide uncertainty. This is the kind of galvanizing music that only Metric, a group that’s consistently stayed true to each other and their ethics for decades, could create.