In a time where people all over the world are protesting in the streets, government secrets are revealed daily through the internet, and conspiracy theories are at an all-time high while the quality of life is nearing an all-time low, it's only fitting that Pittsburgh anarcho-punk rockers Anti- Flag are putting out their ninth album, The General Strike, when the era we live in needs music that truly reflects what's going on in the streets instead of someone sapping over a lost lover or bragging about how big their house is and how many cars they got.
With a title influenced by the worldwide phenomenon known as The Occupy Movement and being jam packed full of revolution-themed anthems that result in the entire album not lasting more than 27 minutes, The General Strike can very well be the most punk record that has hit record store shelves in years. Most people these days think and say the ever so famous phrase, "Punk is Dead", looks like Anti- Flag never got the memo.
Recorded and produced by Anti-Flag in true DIY fashion at their home studio located in the Steel City, the album just oozes with pent up aggression, social angst and just being pissed off at the state of the world we live in that has defined the band since their formation by guitarist/lyricist Justin Sane and drummer Pat Thetic in 1988. Along with Sane and Thetic, Chris Head plays rhythm guitar and Chris #2 plays bass to round out the raucous punk rock quartet.
The album begins with a 22 second driving thrash opus called "Controlled Opposition" which then transitions into the lead single off of The General Strike, "The Neoliberal Anthem", a song about the art of humanity destroying it's own environment. Other tracks that completely rule are "This is The New Sound", "Broken Bones", "The Ghosts of Alexandria", "Turn A Blind Eye" and "Nothing Recedes Like Progress", which features a recording of a mic check and the formation of a general assembly that The Occupy Movement has come to use when organizing and speaking out on issues along with protesting in the streets. No matter what my opinion of the tracks are, you should listen to The General Strike from start to finish because it will transform you into a one-person mosh pit.
Anti-Flag just finished rocking the northeast and midwestern United States in a 9-date tour supporting The General Strike in which they played Brighton Music Hall in Allston, MA on March 9th. They won't be playing another show until the Extreme Thing Sports & Music Festival in Las Vegas on March 31st and then they'll be doing a tour of Europe, but be sure that Anti-Flag will be rocking your hometown to smithereens in the near future. If you love punk rock and you love to speak your mind pick up a copy of Anti-Flag's The General Strike, it gives punk rock the jolt of adrenaline it has needed for a while.
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