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Metals (Amazon Exclusive Version)
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Blu-ray Audio, Import, October 8, 2013
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2011 album from the Canadian singer/songwriter. Metals is the follow-up to her 2007 breakout The Reminder. Recorded in Big Sur, California, Feist co-produced the album with longtime collaborators Chilly Gonzales and Mocky, as well as newcomer Valgeir Sigurdsson (Bjork, Bonnie "Prince" Billy) Metals will mark Feist's celebratory return to the world stage. Like The Reminder, this album is astoundingly intimate, yet often exuberant; rife with transcendent and unforgettable pop gems. The album is being teased with 12 unique vignettes, each hinting at a different element of this stunningly beautiful, sublime record.
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I can't agree more that this is a more mature and contemplative album. It was definitely not what I was hoping for, but I think fans of Feist would not be too disappointed with the change. The fun, quirky and warmth of the Feist songs we love have simply taken a turn for the contemplative, idiosyncratic, and adopted a cooler edge. I read in an interview that Feist had previously contemplated naming the album Mettle but settled on Metals instead. Both are great titles I think, and this album with its new and surprising sound certainly showcased Feist's mettle. It seems to suggests that Feist's music is taking a new direction, but it is one that I will follow. This album has brought me to strange unexpected places, but overall, I say the journey has been really rewarding.
Onto the packaging:
-The jacket actually folds open revealing extra album art, while the other side has all the song lyrics.
-An MP3 download code is provided, however it expired back in 2012. At the website where you would download it, follow the directs and shoot an email complaint about your code not working. They'll quickly respond and send you a new code. I think the download is also at 320kbps so I guess you can also just download it from Amazon if you don't want to bother.
What I appreciate the most is how it combines the best elements of previous albums. It takes the folky, earthy, intimate elements from Let It Die, and adds to it the catchy, jazzy elements from The Reminder. It also manages to lose some of the mainstream pop gloss and sheen she had picked up on The Reminder, that I felt never quite suited her. It even has a few stompers, that see Feist "rocking" quite a bit more than before, thanks to very well done, strong percussive elements added to the mix.
I guess if you picked up on Feist at the Reminder, you may be disappoionted, as this album is not nearly as "poppy." But having heard her first in Broken Social Scene, I love the slight change in direction.
It also seems to be an album that gets better upon subsequent listens, with new elements coming to light that may have been completely overlooked before. So, I recommend anyone initially disappointed by this album to give it another spin or two. It's likely to grow on you...