Agent Fresco – ‘Destrier’ [Review]
There’s more to pain than just pain itself. Extended periods of serious suffering are not always stable and uniform; the experience can contain many subtle emotional shades. There may be periods of calm, relief, joy, and hope mixed in amongst the darkest of dark moments – and Destrier demonstrates this fact in musical form.
Fuelled by the brutal beating of vocalist Arnór Dan Arnarson at the hands of two strangers, and sharing its name with battle-born medieval warhorses, Destrier swings between emotional extremes. It is an unstable cathartic wreck constantly striving to balance itself out. Danceable grooves and funky-math rhythms merge with gritty rock tones and bottomless-pit riffs, peaceful ambience, raging synthetic distortion, classical piano flourishes, and industrialised screams, and one thing is for sure: you can never be precisely sure where you are, or what will come next.
In that respect, Destrier reflects with unsettling accuracy the abuse it was built upon. Agent Fresco have constructed a deeply personal mythology of misery, manifesting it in the form of songs like Pyre, Destrier, Howls, See Hell, and Mono No Aware, to name TMMP’s favourites. Finely crafted, virtuosically orchestrated, and performed with something more primal than passion, this album is an experience you need to have immediately.
TMMP RATING: 91% (Essential Listening!)
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