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Many have wondered with recent political and sociological developments whether there would be a new movement in music and art similar to that of the punk rebellion in the ’70s. Some bands have indeed tried, but few have created something sturdy enough to stand on its own two feet. But one relatively mysterious artist, Agency, is among the first to produce a coherent and unified statement, and on their second album, Resist, they tackle the inequalities, frustrations, and issues of the new generation with an updated spin on the traditional protest song with daring originals and a few relevant covers thrown in for good measure.
The album is a throwback and a loving homage to the social struggle themes of ’60s and ’70s soul musicians like Marvin Gaye. The most obvious indicator is the album opener “What’s Going On (Right Now)” which updates Gaye’s original message with a contemporary and original R&B spin. Covers of songs by Jimi Hendrix and Sinead O’Connor highlight Agency’s belief that the issues of today are rooted in our past history, and these songs remain just as relevant. Resist is a bold and brave conception that is expertly executed, and it will undoubtedly stand as one of the modern era’s first major political artistic works.
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