Fantømex: Consent Agenda

Citing Influence from post hardcore bands such as At the Drive-In and mewithoutYou, Western North Carolina punks, Fantømex, emerge with their strong debut album, Consent Agenda, an eleven-track set of punk rock ferocity. The band has been active since 2017, formed by longtime best friends, guitarist Isaac Crouch and drummer Edwin Mericle, and completed by vocalist and lyricist Abigail Taylor, together with bassist Max Miller.

Not shy about their propensity to fast rhythms and an overall enjoyable kind of intensity and voluminousness, Fantømex's writing and presence are characterized by the band's ardent delivery which is even more augmented through Taylor's sharp vocal poise and bold enunciation. Stirring up memories of the post punk acuteness of bands like Au Pairs and Delta 5, the sound of Fantømex adds a layer of technical dexterity and complexity to the already intriguing honesty of their compositions.

Consent Agenda is lead by single Martha's Favorite Colour, a highlight piece accompanied by a DIY video put together in quarantine. The band describe its lyrical content: "The lyrics behind the song deal with growing up in a small, southern town and the ongoing struggle with religion; feeling at once both very at odds with and somehow in need of it. It's about a love-hate relationship."

Other album standouts include the dynamic opener, Yesterday is Dead, the seven-minute slow-burner, Morning Glory, and the witch-hunt-themed track, The Ballad of Black Phillip, inspired by the film, The Witch.

Cover art by Sterling Leiske

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