Reviews Anti-Flag For Blood and Empire


For Blood and Empire

5.0 / 10 — Neil F.

Punk rock has always been centered on the voicing of ones opinion, with the vast majority of those opinions taking direct aim at politics. In the 70's and 80's, leaders like Jello Biafra and Joey Shithead got so involved in political happenings that they found their way into jails and courthouses on frequent occasions. These encounters only added further fuel and support to the politi-punk scene. As a result, a new wave of followers began to take up arms - including bands like Bad Religion, Green Day, NOFX, and Propagandhi. And that wave of socially and politically minded punk bands continues to flourish today with Pittsburgh natives Anti-Flag leading the pack. With their latest full-length, For Blood and Empire, they are targeting their attack directly on the unscrupulous policies of the Bush regime - and writing some catchy tunes while they're at it.

Musically speaking Anti-Flag do an admirable job on For Blood and Empire. They still maintain their aggressiveness and punk upbringing. But the music has also been infused with pop/rock leanings that could help land the band significant airplay on radio and TV. The result is a little rawer than what you would hear from Green Day, but still more polished than their previous releases. There are plenty of catchy anthems that make not signing-along a crime: "The Press Corpse" and "Hymn for the Dead" for example. The band does push aside its punk roots on the track "1 Trillion Dollars." The song is primarily acoustic and reminded me too much of Dashboard. Guys! You're a punk band - knock it off with the ballads and stick to rocking out. Deliver more rip-roaring cuts like "I'd Tell You but..." and the hardcore-esque "Depleted Uranium is a War Crime."

If you're familiar with Anti-Flag than you know what to expect as far as lyrical content: a lot of left wing liberalism. But if you were expecting them to tone it down and sell-out just because they signed to a major label, you are sadly mistaken as the band has stuck to their belief-system. The majority of the songs attack the politics of Bush's foreign policy including the Iraq war, weapons of mass destruction, and collateral damage. But Anti-Flag also takes aim at the media ("Press Corpse"), advertising ("This is the End (for you my Friend)"), and corporate empires ("Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" and "The W.T.O. Kills Farmers").

Bottom-line here is that you're getting an Anti-Flag album. If you enjoyed any of their previous albums you will enjoy this one. If you didn't, you probably won't like this one bit. And if you really hate politics, vote libertarian.

7.0 / 10 — Michael
KFAI - Roar of the Underground
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6.0 / 10

6.0 / 10

Reviewed by 2 writers.

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