Do a quick Google search for The Agonist. Go on, I’ll wait for you. Notice a trend? Yes, they’re one of those bands. One with a hot female lead singer that seems to rely on its image a little too much. Alissa White-Gluz is fit, there’s no doubting it, but maybe she could have done more for the band by free falling through the ugly tree a bit.
‘Prisoners’ is the Montreal based outfit’s third full-length effort and the first with additional guitarist, Pascal Jobin. White-Gluz has described the album as sounding more mature, influenced by such bands as Pantera and Radiohead. The only comparison to take between those bands and The Agonist though is that they make music. What we have here is an extremely annoying record that sounds like your ears are being raped by elves. You know that fat goth girl in high school that always complains about her life being “so hard”? This is the sort of music that she listens to, along with Marilyn Manson and Cradle Of Filth.
There are SOME compliments to make about ‘Prisoners’; the guitar work is sometimes pretty handy, although the majority of the time it’s drowned out by White-Gluz‘ off-kilter vocals or followed by a bizarre chord change. ‘Ideomotor’ is pretty promising in parts and so it’s a genuine shame that Danny Marino doesn’t play for a good band instead. All the good bits though tend to be respite from the mounds of shit that is the rest of the action. ‘The Escape’ was an EP last year; it wasn’t good then and it isn’t good now in a re-recorded form (why.jpg). The other track from that release, ‘Lonely Solipsist’, is also featured here in equally snoozeworthy form.
By far the most irritating song around though is ‘Predator And Prayer’. Why metal bands insist on including children’s choir vocals, I will never know. Only KoRn can pull it off, and 100% of the time elsewhere it’s annoying as fuck. The words of “we hear you, we don’t care” may apply to the band on reading this review, but if by any chance any of the kids are reading: run children! Go to the playground and play hopscotch or kaplunk or ANYTHING but this.
The only half-decent track is ‘Panophobia’, but even then it wouldn’t even make a Bullet For My Valentine b-sides album. If you eat over 1kg of cake a day, then listen to The Agonist, otherwise spare your ears.
Written by MG Savage
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS! | Atheist and antitheist. | Judge of the quick & the dead since 1989.