The Agony Mixtape is an attempt to celebrate and showcase musical works usually ignored by the mainstream media. Released regularly, it will give audiences worldwide the chance to experience bands and artists they otherwise may never have heard of.
Unbiased and not focused on a particular genre, the Mixtape will focus on music above all else, and will be here as a celebration of art, not of drama.
The tracks featured here are, like all art, ageless. Some are newer than others, and some are by artists that have released numerous tracks since.
This is the first Agony Mixtape featuring Bleach Boy, The Arthur Brothers, Elephant Radio, The Beths, Big Joanie, JRWHATJRWHO, Harrison BDP and Eternal Boy.
Honest and raw, Manchester quartet Bleach Boy deliver something powerful and energetic with debut single, Death Row.
Frontman Milo Flynn’s dynamic vocal contains a note of tragedy, as his sometimes sombre tones manage to draw comparison, at least in the emotive sense, to The Smiths and fellow Manchurians Oasis. The latter perhaps seems a more apt suggestion in the track’s more chaotic sections, with clashing cymbals and distortion mashing together as Flynn channels some intense inner rage not unlike an offstage Gallagher meltdown.
Death Row is a massacre of noise and at the same time mirror-fragile sensitivity that must be an absolutely brutal spectacle live. Bleach Boy are a band to watch, one with the poetry and vigour of New Brunswick six-piece Thursday and Jesse Lacey’s Brand New. AN
THE ARTHUR BROTHERS-NINTH
A mysterious and intelligent cacophony of diverse sounds, The Arthur Brothers’ Ninth is a creative and impressive work that’s as interesting as it is bold.
According to their website this first single, Ninth, is just the beginning of a nine-song-long musical adventure that will eventually become the band’s debut album. A record that, if this track is anything to go by, will be a surprising and hopefully successful work of art. Ninth is an organic piece that somehow seems to change and add new aspects with each subsequent listen, continuing to grow over time.
Comparisons have already been made to experimental legends like The Velvet Underground, Tears For Fears and Peter Gabriel, and it’s only a matter of time before this creative outfit emerge beyond their influences to get noticed as something new and exciting. AN
ELEPHANT RADIO-SAY NOTHING
A track soaked in reverb that feels like home the more you listen, Elephant Radio’s Say Nothing, taken from the Brighton band’s debut EP, California FM, brings to mind long lost summer drives with Brit Pop on the radio.
With Say Nothing Elephant Radio, who take influence from the likes of The Beatles, Tame Impala, Blur and Oasis, have created a breezy and mesmerising, catchy and infectious track that makes you want to kick back from life’s seriousness and just relax for a while.
Though you could easily imagine it being spun in the smoky studio of a sixties pirate radio station, Say Nothing, with its glittering guitars and delicious pop hooks is far from being just another track that harks back to by the decade of love; it’s personal, beautiful and original. AN
THE BETHS-HAPPY UNHAPPY
Lead by ex-trumpet teacher Elizabeth Stokes, this rising Kiwi outfit offer wordy surf-rock for folks in their late twenties who aren’t too old for a one-night stand, but possess the timid grace to depart them with a ‘handshake and a slow wave’.
Cuz it’s no problem when you’re young and smitten, your infatuation hasn’t got to compete with important stuff like “remembering pins and to take out the bins”. As a veritable fogey in pop-punk’s teen terrain, Stokes sings with cognisant kindness to show these late twenties folks that they can still be thick and innocent, even if daydreaming costs you your meagre lunch-break. And after breaking windows and escaping his eyes, the all-male harmonies amp up the puerility before Jonathan Pearce drowns her mania in whirls of guitar. JB
Read more on page two.