Los Angeles based, four-piece band Agender release their highly anticipated sophomore album, No Nostalgia along with a two-in-one music video for their singles “Trouble & Desire,” and “Womb 2 Wound.” Along with some highly intensive video-game style visuals for the music video, the album is a visceral, poignant commentary on today’s quickly evolving world where, to paraphrase author Rebecca Solnit, the pace of modern life has moved past the speed of thoughtfulness. The result is a disjointed society where theoretical values and ethics don’t always align with what is actually taking place in reality.
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“The album reads as a newspaper or a collage. It’s a political, spiritual, philosophical look at modern society- the Information Age,” notes Romy Hoffman, Australian native and Agender’s lead singer. “It’s an anthropological look at the absurd current state of affairs. It’s focused yet unhinged, self reflective, observant, brash, tongue in cheek, serious yet playful. Excavations and observations of the mind of an anxiously attached, overthinking, spiritual human.”
Many tracks on the album bleed into each other with respect to style, tone and intensity. A few tracks break the mold with a delightful boldness, as is with the track ”Top Bottom Top” which is a pulsating, synth heavy danceable number that pays homage to queer sexuality and power dynamics.
Other tunes turn the microscope on contrived gender norms and problems within the individual, with potent and blunt lyrics like the opening lines of “Womb 2 Wound,” a track that slaps you in the face and continues to press a leaded foot on the gas pedal.
Pairing highly satirical commentary on modern and post-modern society, Agender’s new album also denotes a strong tendency toward nostalgia while at the same time longing for some sort of amnesia — to forget both past and present altogether. And, while it presents many issues and social criticism, it also touches on a few solutions to some of our modern problems; spirituality and being self-aware are key, the band notes in quelling existentialism. Combining asymmetrical and parallel thoughts, No Nostalgia contains a wide breadth of ideals, concepts and philosophical musings all set to a sidewinding, fast-paced punk sound.
The double music video, directed by Amanda Lovejoy Street, is a metaphoric and layered visual that deals with anxiety and attachment.
“Agender’s latest two for one video explores what an experimental video game on attachment styles might be. The first video follows lead singer Romy the ‘Dismissive’ as she tries to avoid being caught by Claire, the ‘Preoccupied’,” notes Street. The second video, she continues, “propels Romy into an abstract womb space aka the origin of her attachment style. We move between Romy navigating the smothering ‘wombs’ and into a stylized relationship space where we see the attachment dynamic between her and Claire continue to play out – one where real intimacy is never achieved. George Haas from Mettagroup acts as a ‘therapist’ to narrate and witness.”
Agender will be performing on June 23 at L.A.’s Zebulon with Crow Jane and Caress as part of Crow Jane’s album release party. Grab tickets here.
Words: Patti Sanchez
For more on Agender, make sure to visit their website and follow them on Instagram and Twitter.