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4.2 out of 5 stars42
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 3 October 2011
Feist is one of my two favourite contemporary female singers - Joan Wasser [Joan As Policewoman] being the other - and the Canadian songstress' first release since 2007's superb and acclaimed 'The Reminder' provides more of that same excellence. The tracks vary from the cleverly orchestrated by - to name only a few - horns, violin, broken-fuzzed guitar, various percussion, handclaps, multi-tracked harmonies, and ambient noises, to those that focus on Feist's at times vulnerable but always beautifully toned voice: from whispers to repeated expulsions of breath to perfectly pitched melodies. It is overall a gentle and sweet set of tracks with pop and newfolk sensibilities to the fore, but always her distinctive vocal anchoring the whole.
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on 2 October 2012
On hearing snippets of the album on the internet before it's release, I was a bit put off so did not rush out on day 1 and buy it. I bought it a week or so later and on first listen a few tracks stood out but was still not hooked. After a few listens I started to get into it and since then it has been my most played album of 2012. The initial faves of The "Bad In Each Other", "How Come You Never Go There" and " The Circle Married The Line" have been superceded by "Caught A Long Wind Home", "Bittersweet Melodies" and the truelly fantastic "Anti-Pioneer" which just gets better every time I hear it.
It is an album which has grown on me the more I listen to it. So go on, have a daily dose of Feist, you'll feel better for it.
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I can't say for sure, but I'm fairly sure that Leslie Feist was sad when she made this album.

There's always been a hint of the bittersweet in Feist's folk-jazzy-pop music, even though her last album was a sparkling, colorful affair. But her fourth solo album "Metals" is a far more bittersweet, raw affair, like listening to someone's heart breaking under a moonlit sky in the country.

She sets off with the percussive, country-flavored "The Bad in Each Other," an uneasy bleak song that makes you think of dark rooms and destructive passion. "We held the same feelings/at opposite times/A good man, a good woman/can't find the good in each other," she murmurs.

After that, she slips into a string of soft, slightly sad songs -- the murky drift of "Graveyard," the starlit ballad "Caught a Long Wind," the jazzy "How Come You Never Go There?", the string-soaked meditative "Anti-Pioneer" and its string-soaked crescendo, the heartrendingly lovely "Undiscovered First," and the more hopeful, haunting finale "Get It Wrong, Get It Right" ("We'll go, can hope/have to hope...")/

But she also explores some more.... off-kilter music. "A Commotion" eases us in with the sound of someone repeatedly clamping down on piano keys, only to be swept into a surreal rock of strange voices, bizarre noises and gleeful darkness. And "Cicadas and Gulls" is a proggy bulk that slowly rolls through your ears. It's strangely hypnotic, but it's also uncomfortably out-of-step with the other songs.

I adored "The Resident," and all the different pop styles that Feist was trying on for size. But honestly, it feels like "Metals" is almost the polar opposite -- while some of the musical stylings are similar to Feist's previous works, this one is far softer, sadder and more contemplative.

She sticks mostly to the jazzy-folky-pop sound of her previous albums, but cloaks the acoustic guitars in a sheen of nimble swirling pianos, keyboard, toy piano and great silken masses of strings. And her slightly husky voice floats over the whole thing... except when she yowls, drones or soars. It sounds like it should be lulling -- and sometimes it is, such as in "Graveyard" -- but often Feist throws in something twisted or unnerving when you don't expect it.

There's a sadness and darkness in Feist's "Metals," but it doesn't make the album any less beautiful in execution. I don't think we'll hear any of these songs in iPod commercials, though.
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on 24 June 2013
This is a special album - a six star rating that should come with those special releases that just make you listen over and over again in awe. This has a great sound that switches with great effect between mellow and upbeat, light and melancholic and various other contrasts and juxtapositions. It is lyrically brilliant, and holds my attention for many repeated plays. If 'haunting' and 'beautiful' sound good to you, get this.
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4.5 stars

Having recorded a song quite as ubiquitous as "1234" which when attached to an advert for the I Pod Nano helped shift the little sound units by the millions, tends to be the defining "fact" of Leslie Feist's career thus far. Alternatively very clever people who read Amazon reviews know that this joyous little pop song is the proverbial tip of a very large iceberg when it comes to Feist's talent and what we have with her new album is the productions of some very powerful song craft that leads to the production of very precious metals.

Straddling the world between her indie roots in the great Canadian band Broken Social Scene and appearances on Sesame Street are all taken in her stride by Leslie Feist although on this new album there is too much for the Muppets to sing about. Indeed "Metals" is a darker beast than its predecessor (which also had its moments) but ultimately an altogether stronger and more mature album. It opens with the pounding "The bad in each other" a great folky song which sees Feist almost mixing the Fleet Foxes with Kate Bush to great effect. The next two songs are amongst the most haunting on the album and show her emerging as a major songwriting talent. First up is "Graveyard' with a tender vocal and an almost Tom Waits style backdrop full of horns and an extended exhortation to the inhabitants of the burial ground to "Bring them all back to life". The third song "Caught a long wind" has that sort of icy beauty that Sufjan Stevens has made such a trademark and is a stunning highlight. Alternatively "How come you never go there" is a light soulful blues ballad which stands in sharp contrast. The pivot of the album is "A Commotion" a thumping anthem of indie pop full of deep male chants, violins and thumping drums. This one may split the jury but it shows an artist prepared to take risks which largely work. More gentle are the lovely proceeding tracks "The circle married the line" and the sumptuous "Bittersweet Melodies". Your reviewers favourite track thus far is the five minute plus haunting slow jazz of "Anti Pioneer" a burning love song which would not be out of place on a Cat Power album.

Throughout the album Feist sings brilliantly no more so on the hushed alt country acoustics of "Cicada's and gulls" or on the ethereal closer "Get it get it wrong". Undoubtedly some may bemoan the lack of catchy radio friendly accessibility which previous songs like "I feel it all" and "My moon my man" had in spades. Indeed the Amazon download appears to omit two other tracks that are widely available namely the gothic blues of "Pine Moon" which Nick Cave should cover ASAP and the much more feisty soul of "Woe be" (answers on a postcard please?). Frankly while they are both great songs neither are hits waiting to trouble the charts. In the last analysis accepting that the vibe of "Metals" tends to locate it in more pensive corners which she explored on "The Reminders" Overall the feel of this album is autumnal and like the wonderful season that it captures Feist infuses "Metals" with the feeling that the possibilities of summer are gone, and the chill of winter is on the horizon. You would be foolish not to let this album soundtrack the forthcoming months.
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on 8 April 2012
Serious. Mature. Passionate. Assured. Stirring.

No child-friendly pop songs to speak of on this album.

Sounds like she's making the kind of noise she wants to.

Definitely my favourite of her three albums fo far.
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on 3 December 2015
An absolute fantastic album! and by album I mean a 50 minute musical experience rather than just a random collection of songs by the artist. Everything about Metals flows beautifully, all the emotion and energy is exactly where is should be from the passionate opening in The Bad in Each Other to the delicate ending of Get It Wrong Get It Right. This is how albums should be sonically constructed, every note, every harmony and every chord knows it's part and play's it wonderfully which is what makes Metals such a pleasure to get lost in. This definitely sets a new level for Feist.
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on 16 July 2015
I heard one track of this as I was driving home late one night. Dunno wot radio station it was - but I know the track was How Come You Never Go There. That was all I needed to order.
Suzanne Vega, Lori Anderson, Joni Mitchell ...... fleeting memories triggered by finally getting the peace to playing the whole disc thru.
This lass has the guts to take time out & come back with a portfolio that makes every minute of the time out worth it.
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on 19 June 2013
Listening to this a lot. It's growing with every listen. Got some beauty in there, and I think that I will keep returning.
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on 30 March 2016
This is the best Feist album to date. I saw her give an incredible performance on Jools Holland's Later, then we booked tickets to see her at the Royal Albert Hall, which did not disappoint. By the end of the show half the audience had joined her on stage. Few modern musicians have such passion and charisma.
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