Wednesday, April 12, The Annex, 8 p.m.
In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit: I am employed by the Canadian government. I get paid nearly $5,000 Canadian every time I promote a band from our neighbors to the north, more if they are somehow connected to Broken Social Scene. It sounds unethical, but remember: $5,000 Canadian is only $8.47 in the U.S. And since Tom Laskin and Rich Albertoni get all the good CDs for their columns, and I'm left with the latest Kidz Bop, I feel no guilt.
Just kidding! Everyone knows Canada spends all its money on socialized medicine, leaving none for payola. But it is true that Canada, Toronto especially, is proving to have one of the best rock wombs around.
Metric, this week's awesome Canadian import, began in New York before moving to Toronto. Yes, founders Emily Haines and James Shaw are sometimes members of Broken Social Scene. Yes, they're another cynical alt-pop band with catchy hooks and intellectual lyrics that may, in fact, be mocking you. And yes, you may have heard that their new album, Live It Out, isn't as immediately brilliant as their 2003 effort, Old World Underground, Where Are You Now?
So what? This is a band that should be seen live. In person, Haines is weird and wiggly, sexy and hypnotic. You could sit and watch her for hours.
But you won't. You'll be on your feet dancing (or at least doing the bob-bob-sway thing that passes for dancing) because songs like "Combat Baby" and "IOU" demand it. But politely, because that's the Canadian way. Ca-ching!
Monday April 10, Orpheum Theatre, 7:30 p.m.
Okay, that Drops of Jupiter song is its own parody. I mean, they sang about Tae-Bo? Is that thing even around anymore? (Quick web search answer: Sorta.) But Train is not really a one-hit wonder since they had that "Calling All Angels" song and most recently have gotten some airplay with "Cab."
In time even the power-balled genre they do so well will sound as dated and silly as those once equally popular early-'90s Guns n' Roses or Aerosmith ballads do now. But they don't yet, and let's face it, a little radio-friendly schmaltz isn't the worst thing in the world. I mean, it's not Canadian by any stretch, but it'll do.