It was an evening of intense, dark and very loud punk as METZ played Music Hall of Williamsburg on Wednesday (10/4), the first of two NYC shows the Toronto band is playing with Uniform and Bambara. METZ just released Strange Peace which they made with Steve Albini and features some of their catchiest songs to date while retaining the sheer force and shriiingy noise of their previous records. The band have long used stark backlighting to great effect, and on this tour they've upped the volume on the visuals with banks of LEDs bathing them alternately in blue, red, blinding white and strobes. New songs like "Cellophane" and "Mess of Wires" sounded great, as did older rippers like "Eraser" and "Wet Blanket" as the three guys exploded with spasmodic energy.

If METZ recall The Jesus Lizard at times (they do), Brooklyn duo Uniform channel other Chicagoans: Big Black and Ministry. Using minimal drum machine patterns and synths, plus the kind of subatomic bass that could pulverize a kidney stone, Ben Greenberg and Michael Berdan make industrial punk/metal with the kind of menacing air you can't fake. They were great.

I just missed Bambara's opening set but I'm a fan of their brand of post-punk that recalls groups like The Birthday Party and Gun Club. Pictures from their set, and the whole night, are in the gallery above.

METZ, Uniform and Bambara play again tonight (10/5), this time at Bowery Ballroom and tickets are still available. METZ also have dates with Modest Mouse, Protomartyr and fellow Sub Pop band Moaning lined up. All dates are here.

Earlier Thursday, METZ played a special set in Brooklyn for Pitchfork Live and you can watch the archive of that below.

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photos by Em Grey