Anti-Flag

The General Strike

Written by: PP on 08/03/2012 14:53:17

Ladies and gentlemen, if you've ever wondered how Anti-Flag sounds like on autopilot, "The General Strike" is the answer. After having released two of their best modern albums in "The Bright Lights of America" and especially 2009's "The People or The Gun", it's only natural to run out of steam for a bit (just look at Bad Religion during the mid 90s) while you recharge your lyrical arsenal and melodic riff stockpile for a little while. The good news, however, is that Anti-Flag on autopilot is still rather good, and further cements the band's position as the most underrated political punk band of their generation (vs the success of Rise Against, for example).

"The General Strike" continues to build on Anti-Flag's strengths, the pissed off and left-wing extremist lyrics of vocal combo Justin Sane and Chris #2. Songs like "The Neoliberal Anthem", "1915" and "This Is The New Sound" are vintage Anti-Flag that hasn't changed for at least a decade now when the band found their modern sound on "Mobilize" / "The Terror State" in 2002 and 2003 respectively. So leftist rants and anger against the system continue for the ninth album in a row, and with highlight pieces like "Bullshit Opportunities", "1915", "Broken Bones" and more, Anti-Flag demonstrate no signs of slowing down, even if they don't quite reach the brilliance of "The People Or The Gun" from three years ago.

Much of this can be attributed to the far more aggressive and in-your-face stance that "The General Strike" takes compared to its (only slightly) lighter and more melodic predecessors. Many songs like the 21 second "Controlled Opposition" offer insight into the more underground and faster Anti-Flag as we remember from their early days, so in many ways "The General Strike" can be thought of as a reach-out the band's older fan base to show that they can still play pedal-to-the-floor punk rock with a hardcore edge on request. On the other hand, "Broken Bones" is the kind of track that explains why Anti-Flag have grown their fan base to a huge one over the years, given its anthemic chorus and big woo-hoo backing vocals. In the end, "The General Strike" offers best of both worlds, albeit delivered at an execution that's slightly lacking from the last few albums. That said, it's still a worthy addition to their back catalogue and one any punk fan should consider checking out.

7

Download: Broken Bones, 1915, Bullshit Opportunities, The Ranks Of The Masses Rising
For the fans of: The Unseen, Rise Against, Smoke Or Fire, Star Fucking Hipsters
Listen: Facebook

Release date 20.03.2012
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