If you have been missing The Agency… over the last five years, the wait for new material is over. Today, they have dropped their latest single ‘Defender’. This is the first track off their upcoming album In the Haunted Woods (23 October 2020) and pulses with their signature sound. Using familiar dystopian story elements, the track hits you in waves of sound and builds up expectations for the album.
The staple players of the band, Steve Beyer (lead guitar), Steven K Driver (guitar, vocals) and Andy Ludbrook (bass) are back for this single. On the album, they are joined by an ensemble of musicians to finish the vivid soundscape. The introduction of new players has resulted in a multi-layered sound that is just as addictive as it was in the past.
‘Defender’ opens with a layered melody where traditional guitar lines draw you in while a light synth note hangs around below. This leads you to the vocals that have this smooth vibe. Adding to the layered texture of the single, the vocals sit as this middle layer as the guitars soar above and the drums hit you low.
There are a lot of elements working really hard on this single. You have these awesome guitar lines, captivating vocals, light drums and these synth notes that creep up on you. They are very lightly placed into the single allowing them to perfectly blend with the more traditional instrumentation. All this layering is flawlessly handled ensuring everything combines correctly and does not overshadow the lyrics. The lilting and light piano-led ending sets you down nicely.
After five years, The Agency… is back with a winner in the multi-layered ‘Defender’. The single has everything you love about the band with a thin sliver of something new. Overall, the single is a triumphant return for the band and a great taster for the upcoming album.