VIDEO / MANDATORY METAL: THE AGONIST: “Gates of Horns and Ivory”
When Alissa White-Gluz left The Agonist to join Arch Enemy she claimed that fans knew it was “over,” which had to make one wonder about the future of The Agonist. After all, maybe Alissa knew something we didn’t, that their next album was going to suck. Well, after hearing The Agonist’s new album I have to say I’m glad she left the band. This is partially because I love the album she did with Arch Enemy. But it’s also because I love the killer new album by The Agonist, which now features vocalist Vicky Psarakis, who more than fills her shoes. Here, the band delivers one of their finest tunes to date with mighty, pummeling drums, a massive guitar assault (and a spot on clean thrash solo), intricate bass guitar work and a precious mix of death and clean metal vocals. “With fire at my back / I will tame the waters,” Vicky sings triumphantly. “Fear is not my master.” And, yes, it’s inspiring. You could even look at it as Vicky proudly proclaiming that she’s not the least bit afraid of filling Alissa’s shoes. One thing is for certain: there are a lot of metal singles dropping of late, but this one is the best. If I gave letter grades, it would be an A+.
Guitarist Danny Marino had this to say about the video:
“We had a great time shooting the Gates of Horn and Ivory video with our good friend and long time collaborator David Brodsky. It was great to finally have a video where we get to laugh at ourselves as well! If you’ve ever met the band you would know were not always as serious as our music may let on. The title and lyrics of Gates of Horn and Ivory were inspired by the ancient Greek text The Odyssey. It is said that within dreams should you see something enter through gates made of horn you can know it to be true in life. If the gates are ivory that it is a deception, and in life you should not trust whatever you saw come through those gates. It’s a very interesting concept and I adapted it to things I have witnessed in my life. For the video we decided to use the music industry as the setting for the duality of horn (truth) and ivory (deception).“
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An entertainment journalist for 20 years, Michael McCarthy was a columnist and contributing editor for the magazines Lollipop and LiveWire. He co-created and wrote for Cinezine, one of the '90's most popular movie E-zines. The only time he's not listening to music is when he's watching television shows and movies or reading, usually music magazines.