Anyone familiar with the pedigree of Metric’s lead singer Emily Haines or with Metric’s excellent contribution as the lead credit track for latest Twilight movie would no doubt assume, like I did, that “Fantasies” was worth the purchase. So, with a road trip in front of me, I felt no reason not to make the leap and buy the album without any kind of preview. And why not? Emily Haines is a 36 year old veteran of stellar music, primarily with Canadian super-indie group Broken Social Scene, but also contributing to acts like Stars, The Stills, and solo work for bandmate Kevin Drew. She has a track record for success.
Opening track “Help, I’m Alive” is a solid start, with good guitars and a swarming chorus highlighting Haines’ wonderful high register notes. But after that? Slim pickens. “Sick Muse” goes nowhere and “Satellite Mind” suffers from senseless lyrics ("When I’m bored/I send vibrations/in your direction/from the satellite mind”). “Twilight Galaxy” starts like it’s building to something, but never actually goes anywhere, sputtering around for a perfectly wasteful five minutes. And what in the world is going on in “Stadium Love” when she sings “Odds are neck to neck taking off the gloves/spider versus bat/tiger versus rat/owl versus dove”?
It’s not all terrible. “Gimme Sympathy” and “Collect Call” are perfectly decent tracks, while the toe-tapping electronic swarm of “Gold Guns Girls” almost redeems the whole middle of the album. The real verdict though? The album is not a coalescent product and doesn’t warrant any need to buy it as a whole. Save your money and think about dropping $2 on “Gold Guns Girls” and “Help I’m Alive” and ditching the rest.