Renée Asteria (Agent Double E) is a singer, songstress, guitarist and activist - her life and music is a fusion of social work and art. The music is a strange fusion of Folk-Rock-Reggae which represents the rare combination of cultures and environments which Renee embodies. Her father is Bolivian and mother is Dutch, she grew up in France but was born in the US (NJ). Her family background and love of social work have granted her great privilege to work, study and travel in other countries. Learning and understanding from people of distinct cultures, socioeconomic contexts and environments has been a main priority in her life. She composes songs in order to express herself and to share her experiences with the greater whole.
After one year of social work in Latin America, Renee returns with a second full length album "Caras de Agente Doble E" ("Faces of Agente Doble E") which she produced with much blood and sweat in Buenos Aires, Argentina from October 2006 to April 2007. Argentine producer Matias Martyn and local musicians from TIBETAN MONKEY (Reggae-Dub), SINSEMILLA (Reggae) and TONY FLUYE (Funk-Rock) bring the 12-song production to life. With simple lyrics and enticing music, Renee fuses her passions; South and North America, social work and music, love and nature. You'll hear rock with a Byork/Blind Melon/Soundgarden feel, Reggae - Lee Perry/Wailers with a female touch - and even dancehall. Her vocals will make you dance and dream. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ "Caras de AGENTE DOBLE E" includes songs in English and Spanish with creative melodies and song themes, including, public health issues ("El Mosquito", Dengue and "La Vinchuca",Chagas disease), social awareness raising ("Break Away", "Open Mind", "So Irrational", "Life is Crazy") and love songs metaphorically embodied in odes to the Sun ("Oblivion") and the Sea ("Blue Mystery"). The album was presented live in Buenos Aires, Argentina and aired live on Rock&Pop FM and Open Air Radio (Argentina). It is scheduled for release in NYC (June 9th, 2007).
Well, as a woman - in Latin America it is strange to be named Renée - so she has always presented herself as René "with double e for a woman" translated in Spanish to "con doble e para mujer" - and her nomadic lifestyle leads some friends to suspect that she's a SPY - HAHAH. Who knows? Thus the name Agent Double E (Agente Doble E)!
She is also a member of the Andean folk-rock band, Quinoa Groove, which performs for private parties, benefits and in the open-air (SF Bay Area, California) (http://www.cdbaby.com/quinoagroove, 2006). Other musical projects include lead singer - interpreter - and composer for Spiritual Reggae Band (http://www.spiritualreggae.com.ar) and Chorist for SoloSol (http://www.myspace.com/solosolreggae) (Buenos Aires, Argentina). She has sung with WEADEM (http://www.myspace.com/WEADEM) and PACIFIC VIBRATIONS, 2 reggae-ska-rocksteady bands from Northern California. Her debut album (pop-rock) recorded with SF-based studio musicians (2005) can be obtained from http://www.cdbaby.com/asteria.
Lyrics&Music&Artwork: Renée Asteria. Production:R Asteria & Matias Martyn of Tibetan Monkey (http://www.myspace.com/tibetanmonkey ). Dub tracks produced by M Martyn (11,12). Mixed by M Martyn (all except 9, 10), Julirecords (9,10) & R Asteria & Live Oak Studio (9,10). Mastering: Live Oak Studio & Tibetan Monkey. Recording: Drums, vocals, acoustic guitars - DeBonete Studio (1-6, 8,10), Julirecords (6, 9,10), Bass, electric guitars, contrabass, keys, synthesizer, clave, melodica, piano, flute, trumpet - Tibetan Monkey (1-3,5,6,9-12) Utopia Records (4,5,8), Julirecords (6,9). Musicians: Drums Manuel Lugea (except 10), Programmed drums M Martyn, Percussion Maxi Sotelo (10), Bass Gustavo Estevez (1-3,10-12) Pedro Olecese (4-7,9,10), Contrabass Pedro Irusta (8), Electric guitars Matias Brunel (1-3,10-12), Diego Frederico Solé (4,5,7), Lucas Detone (6,8,9) Jesse Engel (8),12 chord guitar (6,8,9) L Detone, Acoustic Guitar (4,6,7,9,10) R Asteria, Keys, synthesizer, clave, melodica, piano German Alvarez (1-3,11), M Martin (3,5,10,12), Trumpet Alejo Hernandez, Flute Alfonso Schmidt, Vocals lead, backing R Asteria.
When I first heard Renee Asteria's music properly, her voice was accompanied by nothing more than an acoustic guitar and a drum. Acoustic arrangements typically connote to me lazy, unenthusiastic, and ultimately boring versions of songs played better by a full band. But Renee's set was different. Stripped of arrangements, the sheer essence of her songs shone through, her powerful and emotional voice at the forefront. This, I thought, is a musician who knows what she is doing. And so I made my way home, eager to hear what she had done with the arrangements for those songs on her album. To say the least, I wasn't disappointed. The element of Renee's music that I am consistently amazed by is her intuitive ability to seamlessly blend numerous musical styles and cultural sounds. She's primarily influenced by reggae, but elements from around the world seem to naturally find their way into her sound. Take "Life is Crazy", for instance. Some of the guitars are tinged with reggae, some more American folk, the melody wouldn't be out of place in some French dive bar if the lyrics weren't in English, and the finishing guitar solo liberally takes cues from funk-rock. And that's just scratching the surface of this album. One could listen over and over, hearing new elements each time, never quite understanding the full picture that Renee is painting. All this is not to say that Renee is some sort of musical thief. She gracefully allows her musical history to influence her sound without letting it blot out her own style and individuality. Her personality is deeply imprinted into these songs. From the jubilant and bouncy "Mosquito" to the tender "Lullabye" to the yearning and resigned "Smile", we know that this music is 100% Renee. But perhaps the most important aspect of Renee's music is her commitment to humanity. Her message is one of compassion and love - be compassionate to others, be proud of what you can offer the world, and love indiscriminately. Sadly, this message is all but lost in the world of modern popular music, and as such it is all the more important for a voice like Renee's to be heard loud and clear. BY Nick Krefting - Contact if you want a constructively critical review - firstname.lastname@example.org
|POSTED BY: Reneeasteria||POSTED ON: 31 Jul 2007 11:50 AM|
Check out Music from "faces of agent double e' - videos (live) of Agent Double E (aka Renee Asteria) - eclectic latin rock and Reggae.
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|POSTED BY: xavierpersad||POSTED ON: 18 Jun 2007 02:22 PM|
Agent Double E’s “Faces of Agent Double E” is most accurately described as a latin reggae paradise! Laden with amazing, pitch-perfect, harmony-filled vocals, groovy beats, and memorable lyrics, “Faces of Agent Double E” maintains a refreshing island appeal from beginning to end. “Vinchuca” stands out as musically innovative, and introduces Agent Double E’s multi-lingual appeal with skillfully interwoven Spanish lyrics. Furthermore, this record hails a rare degree of amazing instrumentation, namely the delightfully clever lead electric guitar riffs and tight overall band sound. With production defined by unchallenged clarity and quality, this album is sure to claim the CD-slot in the stereo deck of reggae fans and latin music fans for a very long time!-Xavier P. and RadioIndy
Check out Agent Double E's music on RadioIndy.com with link to purchase and links to popular sites