Holden Payne & The Agonies

Shuffle Along 7″
Empty Records, 1996

One of the low points of 2008 — just about a year ago — was the announcement of longtime Seattle punk ‘n roll label, Empty Records, calling it a day. While I didn’t love everything the label cranked out in its heyday, the Empty roster always had a handful of bands that absolutely tore it up, from Dead Moon to The Motards, to The Reatards, X-Rays, Lost Sounds, Tokyo Electron, Destruction Unit, and many others. Buried within that impressive punkrock pedigree was this perfectly boozy bluespunk rager, the only release from Holden Payne & The Agonies. The band was made up from members of The Latch Key Kids (who I know nothing about, so if anyone can enlighten me, please do) and the Kent 3, and featured a brash, blaring, reverbed guitar sound that paired perfectly with swaggering, drunken vocal warbling and a few blasts of harmonica. During my Zeen zine days, I tried to get an interview and more info on this NW punk powerhouse, but to no avail. Whether they were too punk or too drunk to cater to nerdy fanboys, they remain a mystery, so I’m still wondering why they only left us with these 3 brilliant songs on a 7″ that no one has heard‚Ķ


Holden Payne & The Agonies – “Shuffle Along”
Holden Payne & The Agonies – “Drunk Tank
Holden Payne & The Agonies – “California‚Ķ Why?”

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2 Responses to “Holden Payne & The Agonies”

  1. Wez Says:

    The Latchkey Kids came out of the Wedgwood scene — an area north and a little east of downtown Seattle and the U-District. It was affordable (then, but not now) and close enough to downtown to make it worthwhile. It was kind of sleepy at that time, but there were a couple punk houses out there, a studio, screenprinting, and a few bands formed out the scene. The Latchkey Kids played a few shows at places like the Lake Union Pub, if memory serves, but didn’t last longer than a year I’m guessing. Great group of people, and as noted people went on to join and form other bands.

  2. Doug Says:

    Thanks Wez! Did the Seattle Latchkey Kids have any releases? All I’ve been able to find are other bands called the Latchkey Kids from Houston, New Jersey, California, etc.

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