Agitated – Strangeways
In a world where fake machismo and “fake it until you make it” approach, is prized as the sure path towards success, we should acknowledge how important popular art trends have been in opening up serious discussion around topics such as mental illness. Part of the taboo surrounding this topic is dissipating, and this is in no small part due to the influence of rock music and songs written about the topic. Next time you seem someone complaining that the music you’re enjoying is too disturbing, please smack them over the head for me, eh?
Now, of course, with any cause that starts to be massively embraced, it’s easy to assume that many will want to jump on the bandwagon. Clearly, a lot of people are struggling with mental issues, but some are using their confessions as a way to sell more records. In light of this, it’s important to differentiate those honestly eager to explore this territory for selfless reasons from the ones doing it as a PR stunt.
Agitated is a group that has opted to speak about the matter in their recent composition Strangeways and they seem to be doing it for all the right reasons. The lyrics deal with the claustrophobic feeling that many in such cases are forced to suffer.
The tune also allowed Agitated to showcase their own brand of rock n’ roll, built on a fascination for modern garage-rock like the one played by Royal Blood and prog-pop like Muse. A worthy cause from a band worthy of your attention.
The Citradels – Dead Time
Rock n’ roll music may be the one medium where the losers, as long as they possess enough charisma, are more fondly remembered than the actual winners. You won’t find a lot of new bands citing the Eagles or Shania Twain as influences, as great as those two examples are, but you’ll find thousands of new bands formed on a shared admiration for oblivion-seekers with a guitar.
This seems to be the case with the Australian psych-rock group The Citradels. Yes, they do like the garage and psych sounds of the 60s, and they also pay homage to the haircuts and attire that were in vogue at the time. But, their real influences are the Brian Jonestown Massacre, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Spacemen 3 or Galaxie 500, all uber-cool bands who never passed a drug test in their life.
The Australian groups’ Dead Time shimmers through a deluge of echoey guitars and tambourine. If you know anything about modern psych-rock is that it requires a really cool looking tambourine player. The vocals either cavernous through the spacious guitar arrangement. This is space music for mind travel.