Released: 07-08-2015 ISL
I definitely mentioned that Agent Fresco are one of the most interesting bands from Iceland at least once here on this site. Their sophomore album entitled “Destrier” is set to come out on the 7th August and belongs to the most anticipated albums of this year for me.
It’s clear that the expectations are high ever since checking out their debut “A Long Time Listening”. Will Agent Fresco top themselves on “Destrier”?
The record starts with a rather unconventional intro called “Let Them See Us”. One does not know what to expect in the beginning, but Agent Fresco already managed to deliver a mysteriously spectacular opening that flows by into the hit “Dark Water”.
And that’s the one single I stumbled across back in summer 2014, being the first track of Agent Fresco I ever heard. It’s mind-blowing in its own way and I don’t even know why. It’s rather hard to explain, so I’ll just advise you to take a listen to this one if you haven’t.
“Destrier” continues with “Pyre”. Blending Alternative with Prog Rock big times, giving way to the unique song patters that are typical for this band.
The album’s title-giving song “Destrier” lifts you up from your seats with its anthem-like chorus and “Wait For Me” aka the third single shows a more emotional and experimental side.
“Howls” is just… Fucking unbelievable. Yes. That’s one way how to describe it.
The next big thing is “The Autumn Red”. It might not be the catchiest track, but as every other song on “Destrier”, even this one has its own something to it. Every track is a strong individual and that’s the thing I appreciate on this record.
One can label “The Autumn Red” as modern Prog Rock without being ashamed.
There’s an intermission known as “Citadel” after which you’ll be able to hear another single material. Yes. It’s the explosive “See Hell”.
A very positive point about these single choices is, that nothing tells you what to expect from the rest of the album. No matter how hard you try, you just can’t find out what’s coming at you before you go and take a listen.
“Let Fall The Curtain” has the guts to bring you to tears just to let “Destrier” hit you in the face with “Bemoan”. You’ll probably be moved by “Bemoan”.
This track proved that Arnór Dan is possibly one of the worthiest vocalists I ever came across in this genre. That versatility he sings with is just admirable. Another perfect example for that can be found in “Angst”.
It continues with “Death Rattle”. Another touching piece. And here I am, listening to this album for the fourth time, still crying like a little kid when this one comes up.
This is the second album of 2015 that brought me to tears.
“Mono No Aware” represents the end of that one record known as “Destrier”.
A grandiose ending which doesn’t allow you to go and make yourself an opinion what you just heard in the last 50-something minutes. It sticks with you and holds you down. Until the end.
After all is over you’re just sitting there, devastated with draining emotions…
And that, my friends, is how you know that an album is fucking great.
Agent Fresco did it.
“Destrier” belongs to the records you have to spend time with and it doesn’t take just one listen to be fully satisfied. After the first listen you’ll probably think something like “What the fuck was this?!” before you take another go and start to understand where “Destrier” wants to take you. Before you start to appreciate it.
And this is the thing that simply makes a perfect record.
I admit that I only heard two albums this year that actually managed to pull off something like this and “Destrier” is the third one.
Anyway, I’m looking forward experiencing Agent Fresco live on the 7th December in Munich’s Ampere and you should definitely check out their Eurotour dates.
- Dark Water
- See Hell
- Death Rattle
Take a Listen:
Written by M. Nyman – August 2015