Anyone want to lay odds that Leslie Feist got hold of Kate Bush’s 1982 masterpiece, The Dreaming, before starting work on this album? She doesn’t push things quite as far into the abstract as Bush did, but the influence is all over this adventurous set. The best track here, “Undiscovered First,” which sports a gorgeous multitracked chorus, even has a tribal percussion rhythm straight out of The Dreaming’s title track. And the sole rocker, “A Commotion,” has a male chorus that harks back to David Gilmour’s cameos on Bush’s album. That “sole rocker” part is a problem, though, since Feist is less willing to break out of her midtempo comfort zone (save when she slows it down even further, as on the long drag of a centerpiece, “Anti-Pioneer”). But the lovely moments of Metals (like the opening “The Bad in Each Other,” whose bass harmonica screams Pet Sounds) outweigh its sleepy ones, and for an artist who’d found a niche in ad/sitcom soundtracks, it’s a worthy mold-breaking effort.
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