Review: “The Blood Album” – AFI
For a band who’s 26, AFI have had one hell of a career. Starting off hardcore which saw them blowing the roof out of basements to turning into horror punk which started building their fanbase to new heights. It was the 2000s which saw them riding the emo craze. Guy liner and frontman, Davey Havok’s insane hair styles everywhere. That’s not to say the music was bad seeing as how Sing The Sorrow and Decemberunderground are classics in their own right. Nowadays, we’re in the current straight up rock and post punk era and it’s fantastic. The Blood Album however, refines and brings their old and new sound into this healthy mix of punk rock and post punk.
First and most importantly, Davey Havok still has it. At 41 he still proves he can bring on the punk with songs like Dumb Kids while still delivering beautiful gothic ballroom tunes like She Speaks The Language. His lyrics are also still as solid as ever. On Snow Cats, he writes from a distressed woman’s point of view. She tells the listener “I’ll wait for you another night dressed in Himalayan white”. Hidden Knives brings beauty to murder as Havok sings “So poorly I’ve hidden knives. You will find them, you’ll find them and we’ll put pen to page”. He always had a knack to show the beauty in such dark moments. Guitarist/Producer, Jade Puget also shines on The Blood Album. His echoey post punk production is the cherry on top but it’s his skills behind the guitar that are a work of art. How he can play a punk tune like Still A Stranger and go to a slow post punk tune like Aurelia without making it stick out is crazy. Puget can still write a pop rock tune as well as seen in White Offerings. One more notable thing is Bassist Hunter Burgan takes less of a back seat as you can see in opener, Dark Snow.
The Blood Album doesn’t see them reinventing themselves but instead refining again to find this perfect AFI sound. Fans of both The Art Of Drowning and Decemberunderground will enjoy this. After 26 years, AFI show no signs of slowing down.
The Blood Album gets a 4 out of 5
Key Tracks: Still A Stranger, Aurelia, Hidden Knives, Dumb Kids, She Speaks The Language