Album Reviews

AFI (The Blood Album)
AFI - AFI (The Blood Album)
Friday, January 20, 2017 - 09:47
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- by Nate Hennon

I first heard AFI when I blindly got "Very Proud Of Ya" on cassette from a Warehouse music in 1997. Since then I have always been a little out of step with what AFI was currently doing. While everyone was diving deep into "The Art of Drowning," I was still rocking "I Wanna Get a Mohawk (But Mom Won't Let Me Get One)" from their debut album, "Answer That and Stay Fashionable." As everyone was fighting the earworm chorus of "Miss Murder," my brother and I were only listening to "Sing the Sorrow" during a road trip to Northern California. Furthermore, just last year, I finally wrapped my head around their 2009 release "Crash Love" (it's good, by the way).  So yeah AFI is a band I like to listen to, but only a few years after the mainstream goth punk world.

However, when I saw that AFI was releasing a new album in 2017, I was excited to get my fandom up-to-date. The opening song, "Dark Snow," keeps the dissonant, drum heavy openness AFI has curated in their songs over the last decade, but this doesn't last long. The next few songs on the album, AFI's signature melodic guitar riffs are at their best and Davey's voice is infectious. With their use of tone heavy bass riffs that lay over a slowed down heavy metal drum beat, AFI has built a fan base on these particular musical aesthetics. Unlike a lot of AFI's more recent releases, "The Blood Album" has more speed than expected. "Still a Stranger" and "Dumb Kids" are songs with enough energy to get the most disaffected teen mixed up in a very fashionable circle pit.

Even though AFI takes a lot of lumps in certain punk rock circles, they are still a fantastic band. Plenty of my knucklehead friends would crack a joke about them while secretly loving a lot of their songs (Randy, I'm looking at you). Whatever your opinion, these vampy 40-year olds know how to compose a rock/pop song. "The Blood Album" may not recapture the furiousness AFI had in their early years, but it does take the long time listener back to the beginning of their goth-punk era.


Track listing:

  1. Dark Snow
  2. Still a Stranger
  3. Aurelia
  4. Hidden Knives
  5. Get Hurt
  6. Above the Bridge
  7. So Beneath You
  8. Snow Cats
  9. Dumb Kids
  10. Pink Eyes
  11. Feed from the Floor
  12. White Offerings
  13. She Speaks the Language
  14. The Wind That Carries
Tom Dumarey
Tom Dumarey

Lacking the talent to actually play in a band, Tom decided he would write about bands instead. Turns out his writing skills are mediocre at best as well.