The riotous duo known as the Agitator (Derek Meins, vocals, and Robert Dylan Thomas, percussion) have just released their second single, “Give Me All That You Got”. In keeping with the spirit of their name and their first release, the rabble-rousing “Get Ready”, this second work is not so much a single as a call to arms. Meins advocates what he calls ‘NO!-ism’–a strategy that, if implemented, could send politicians running for the hills and away from swarms of pissed off citizens. The video features these selfsame masses rioting, dancing, singing, and striking all over London, led by an angry, megaphone-wielding Meins.
And while I’m not certain about their all-purpose political philosophy, I am sure that the Agitator will be creating some musical waves. The powerful combination of voice and drums (according to their Myspace, “guitars are for decadent capitalist sissies”) creates something appropriately loud and primal; Meins’s emphatic cries are backed by a cacophonous flurry of breaks and beats.
Both Meins and Thomas have been around the London scene for a while. Originally part of the band Eastern Lane, Meins later released a solo album called The Famous Poet Derek Meins. He participated in the acclaimed River Rat Pack Tour alongside such new-folk mainstays as Mumford & Sons, Jay Jay Pistolet, and Beans on Toast. “The Big Beat” to Meins’s “Big Mouth”, Robert Dylan Thomas played the drums for the Maccabees on their first album, Colour It In. Together, these two musicians have created something unique. This is protest music in a new way, in a new era of unrest and socioeconomic crisis. Do I think the Agitator is onto something politically? Not necessarily. But especially after these U.S. midterm elections, I sure don’t mind some angry music.