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[font=Tahoma]I woke up around 10 AM on 06/06/06, excited that AFI's new album was finally out and that I was going to get it very shortly. To be honest, I was afraid that they had changed too much, but I was willing to get the CD to find out, and to add another album to my collection. So, I got to Borders around noon, bought Decemberunderground, and promptly began to listen to it.[/font]

[b]Prelude 12/21[/b] - I don't think there is an AFI album that doesn't feature a shorter, less complex song to introduce it. The soft bells at the beginning are beautifully haunting, and Davey's voice comes in meekly. Once the hip-hoppish sounding beat comes in, he becomes more passionate about the lyrics. Overall, I really like this one. It's quite catchy.

[b]Kill Caustic[/b] - It starts with screaming and goes back and forth between that and singing. I'm not too fond of the verses, but I really like the chorus. My favorite part is near the end, when Davey whispers "Don't ever speak my name." The guitar becomes loud and heavy, and I want to thrash about. This is definitely one of the better songs on the album.

[b]Miss Murder[/b] - This is the single that most everybody knows. It was catchy when they released it, and it's even more so now that I can hear the electronica that they used in it. This one reminds me the most of AFI's previous albums, which is probably why I love it so much. I adore the part where Davey says, "without hope..." then escalates into a passionate scream. I can tell why they released this song before the album.

[b]Summer Shudder[/b] - I think a lot of AFI fans really like this one, and I'm right there with them. I really like everything about it, especially the chorus. Sadly, it seems the best songs decided to stay around the beginning. I can hardly remember the rest of the album without listening to it.

[b]The Interview[/b] - The opening guitar makes me want to listen to "Halloween" by Siouxsie and the Banshees. It's a slow song, but I like the parts before the chorus and the chorus. The organ at the end reminds me of...it's either an emo band or a slowed down version of horrorpunk.

[b]Love Like Winter[/b] - I don't like how Davey sings in the beginning. It reminds me of that girl in my chorus class last year who thought she was singing in a really good popstyle, but she didn't sound very good. The chorus, as usual, is catchy, and there's some very good instrumentation and electronica in this one. There's a tiny tiny bit of foreign language in this one, but not enough to actually impact the song. It might be Italian.

[b]Affliction[/b] - I can't decide whether I love or hate the intro. The repeating bassline is kind of annoying. I really like the guitar right before the chorus, and I love the chorus as well (when haven't I?). There's a part near the end that really shows off Davey's range, but I don't much care for it. At the very end is a sort of instrumental with a poppy beat and clean sounding guitar. It reminds me of a rainy day outside a hospital. There's a panicky sounding lady speaking, but I have no idea what she's saying.

[b]The Missing Frame[/b] - Not one of my favorites. I don't much care for the "ooh" synth sound, or the chorus. It reminds me a lot of The Bravery or the Postal Service with a distortion guitar. If I wanted the Bravey or the Postal Service, I would listen to them...but this is AFI. The chorus sounds surprisingly upbeat despite the lyrics, which isn't quite what I'm looking for in an AFI album. It makes me miss the despair of Black Sails, or even Sing the Sorrow. I like the part where Davey sings "with the flag behind me, put out the fire inside me," though.

[b]Kiss and Control[/b] - The intro is strongly reminscent of the verses of Silver and Cold, sung in a soft voice that gets louder with the guitar. That turns into a scream for the chorus, and I can hear the passion behind it. My favorite part is when Davey begins to speak, and he gradually gets angry and more urgent, then finally screams. The electronica fits nicely with this song, probably because there isn't much.

[b]The Killing Lights[/b] - This one has the newer sound that is still AFI. There's not much to say, other than it's pretty catchy, and I like it a bit. It sort of sounds emo around the part that goes, "cut cut cut cut cut cut cut you up," and the very short guitar solo sounds kind of messy and panicky. There's a longer guitar part that isn't a solo that's very clean and pretty, and fits the song really well.

[b]37mm[/b] - I like the electronica in the beginning. This song is more despairing than some of the others; "if you believe in me, how can I be dissolving?" The chorus is very nice, as well. At some point, he sings "your sins into me," which DEFINITELY reminds me of Sing the Sorrow. (Hm, can you figure out why?) There's a strange electronic part at the end that I don't like very much, backed by the trademark "ooooohs" that can be found in at least most of the songs from the past four or five AFI albums (be it an "oh" or a "woah).

[b]Endlessly, She Said[/b] - This is a very nice closer to the album, filled with passion and bits of despair, made known by the chorus, "'I will wait for you,' she said, 'endlessly.'" The melody sounds like a rainy day at the beginning, then like a storm near the chorus. This song mixes hope and hopelessness together perfectly, as contradicting as that sounds. Surprisingly, there's no hidden track behind this one, which leaves a kind of empty feeling...considering Black Sails, Art of Drowning, and Sing the Sorrow had "Midnight Sun," "Battled," and "Spoken Word/This Time Imperfect," respectively. Without the hidden song, this track would've done better ending explosively and not acapella.

Ah, such is life. Anticipation can often end in disappointment. I still love it, simply because it's AFI, but I really REALLY miss the amazing work they did on Black Sails through Sing the Sorrow. A perk, for me, is that my random band member on the lyric book cover happened to be Davey. Who we all know is the most beautiful man in the world. Candy for my ears AND eyes!

So, did anyone else get AFI's new album? What do you think? Have they changed too much? Are they sexy or what? Let's have some discussion.

[font=Verdana][color=blue]Fixed your picture.[/color][/font]
[/font][font=Verdana][color=blue]- Petie[/color][/font]
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Well, I've loved all their popular songs, so I convinced my mom to buy it on 666.

Prelude - actually probably my favorite song on there. I just plain love it and it's always stuck in my head

Kill Caustic - Hatred. When I heard this song my first though was 'oh my god what have I done? I've done bought an emo CD!!!" the guitars are kinda cool in the chorus though.

Miss Murder - I like it, it's catchy and fun and the reason I picked up the disk.

Summer Shudder - That one's pretty good, not really my style, but it's okay.

The Interview - Meh.

Love Like Winter - Once again, not really my style, but I thought it was alright.

Affliction - I really liked this song for the lyrics simply because I could reflect on them. I like all the songs' lyrics but this one in particular.

The Missing Frame - I don't remember it >_<

Kiss And Control - I love this song for it's eightees-pop vibe. Assuming this is the song I think it is >_<

The other 3 I hardly even remember.
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[SIZE=1]Well, being a disgrace to AFI fans everywhere, I'm a little hesitant to buy this album, I downloaded the tracks to check it out first. I still don't know how I feel, but maybe this little review will help me make up my mind.

[B]Prelude 12/21[/B] - I love the chimes, and this is very traditional for AFI albums to have an interesting little opening to their album. This one is a little longer than most, and isn't my favorite (I prefer Strength Through Wounding and Miseria Cantare), but still has that AFI feel to it.

[B]Kill Caustic[/B] - Hearing Davey's screaming is a little new, but the beginning is very catchy, this is definately one of the songs that I really enjoy listening to. It makes me want to dance. I can see this being a fan fave at shows.

[B]Miss Murder[/B] - This was the first song of the album I heard, because they posted it on their website. I like the mixture of old AFI with the new AFI that eminates for this song. Seeing the live performance at the VMA's was a little disappointing though, I didn't see any of the Davey High-kicks that I love so much. This song is reminescent of Art of Drowning.

[B]Summer Shudder[/B] - I really like this song, this is something that I could listen to anywhere, in my car, in the shower, cleaning... I don't like the phone dialing half-way through though, I think it takes away from the song. My only other complaint is that this song is a little repetitive and could get overplayed.

[B]The Interview[/B] - I like the bass at the beginning, and I don't mind the song, but I've heard alot better slow AFI songs (ie. Morning Star, God Called in Sick Today, This Time Imperfect). But half way through the song it does redeem itself. This song I would listen to on one of those days when I just feel crappy.

[B]Love Like Winter[/B] - The beginning I don't really care for, Davey sounds wayyy too whiney. The chorus isn't that bad, I don't mind the synthesisers either. This isn't really my favorite track on the album, so I'm a little indifferent to it.

[B]Affliction[/B] - Davey's screaming really weirds me out in this song, haha. But I actually like it. It has that same angst that shows in the other albums.

[B]The Missing Frame[/B] - At first I didn't like the song, but once Davey started singing I started to like this song a little more. I agree with you Amelia, it is a little to upbeat and "The Bravery"-ish for me. But this song does appeal to the dance-y little girl in me.

[B]Kiss and Control[/B] - Meh, the synth at the beginning. I do like Davey's soft singing at the beginning, and then the chorus I just LOVE. But the little shouting and speaking was kinda lame. That kinda ruined the song for me.

[B]The Killing Lights[/B] - Meh, this is okay. I really like the "Cut cut cut cut cut cut you up" part though. This song was aiight.

[B]37mm[/B] - Although it's different for AFI, I have to admit the electronica is pretty cool. I would have to say that this is my favorite song on the album I think, either this or Kill Caustic. It's a little more upbeat than other favorite AFI songs of mine, but at least I'd be able to cruise around in my car and enjoy this song.

[B]Endlessly, She Said[/B] - This song's not bad. The beginning reminds me of a cold quiet winter day, this one reminds me of AOD, but revamped.

So the verdict? Not the best AFI album to date. I feel a little empty after hearing this album, like there's something missing from the old AFI. I wouldn't go so far out as saying they sold out, but I think they are evolving into something far different from where they started. It makes me not want to think of what their next album is going to be like. Will purchase it? I doubt it. I think I'll buy Answer That and Stay Fashionable instead.

I do think they've changed too much, but perhaps I just haven't grown with them as a fan. There aren't any songs that really jump out at me as have happened on previous albums, and I wasn't moved in the same way as I have been with previous albums. I do appreciate that they remain unique as a band, but I think I'm starting to lose interest, which makes me really sad because AFI has been one of my favorite bands and have actually gotten me through alot of hard times. I guess there's always the older stuff though. That stuff will always be absolutely AMAZING.[/SIZE]
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[SIZE=1]I downloaded it for now.. me needs money in my pocket before I even begin to decide if it's worth it lol. Just before you read into my quick review thing, I heard Sing The Sorrow first, so if the band's been changing album to album then I cant comment on that. And um yeah, it shows what kinda sound I was expecting to hear off them to ebgin with, I guess.

[B]Prelude 12/21[/B] -
Very nice hard hitting intro. The lyrics are nice and the drums sound all kickass and loud and ..tribal?

[B]Kill Caustic[/B] -
It's ok. I can listen to it, but I prefer others on the album over it. I dunno what else to really say that hasnt been said.

[B]Miss Murder[/B] -
I didnt like this at first. It sounded too plain and generic or something. But it grew on me and I cant even say when =/

[B]Summer Shudder[/B] -
I heart lol. It's like.. calm, and yet anthemic. Love near the end when the beat drops, or whatever, and then Davey starts singing again.. eee!

[B]The Interview[/B] -
I didnt like this one at first but it's actually quite nice for a slowy song. Makes for nice revision music I've decided lol.

[B]Love Like Winter[/B] -
I heart agains lol. It reminds me of like VH1 or something and it's pretty poppy (2 things I generally distance myself from), but it's nice.

[B]Affliction[/B] -
I can only listen to like the first 35 seconds or so of this song. The tune is very frantic but it just has a repetitive feel to it, even though it does actually switch up. I dunno.

[B]The Missing Frame[/B] -
It's nice again but takes a while to get to itself for me lol. Makes nice background music though.

[B]Kiss and Control[/B] -
It's ok. Not so into this song. I like the lead-up to the chorus lol.

[B]The Killing Lights[/B] -
Me likey! ^_^
The guitar to the 'killing time again' to the parts with the panting (?) and where the tune chops up as some sort of a pre-cursor to the 'cut cut cut cut cut' section.. so cool.

[B]37mm[/B] -
The first few seconds had me like 'what the hell' lol. It's different, but very nice. Nice and fairly laidback to the point I could play it and kickbak to it. The outro with the Davey-sample thing is funky, in a nice way.

[B]Endlessly, She Said[/B] -
It's nice, lol. I dunno what else to say. For some reason this song makes me feel gloomy lol.

[b](Hidden track)[/b] -
I love this lol. It's a only-under-2 minutes instrumental with a little phone recording over a part of it but it kicks ***. Soothing. The beat kinda reminds me of Fort Minor's "Where'd You Go". Maybe cos of the drum pattern or something.

And that's me done with it :)[/SIZE]
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[font=trebuchet ms](I'm not going to go through each of the tracks, I don't really see the point after four other people doing it.)

I still have my leak, and honestly, it's not a cd I'm interested in picking up. It just feels like they either become the mainstream or the mainstream becomes them with each release. This time, their sound was pre-existing. Before, I would never compare AFI to UnderOath or From First to Last, but now they sound like a mix between the two bands to me. Especially if you hear what's on UnderOath's new album. Do I also sense some Hawthorne Heights? Yuck!

But really, while the first four songs are decent, plus maybe a few cool parts in other songs; none of them even come close to songs like "The Leaving Song II" or "Dancing Through Sunday," or much if any of their older stuff.[/font]
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[SIZE=2][SIZE=1][QUOTE=RiflesAtRecess][font=trebuchet ms](I'm not going to go through each of the tracks, I don't really see the point after four other people doing it.)

I still have my leak, and honestly, it's not a cd I'm interested in picking up. It just feels like they either become the mainstream or the mainstream becomes them with each release. This time, their sound was pre-existing. Before, I would never compare AFI to UnderOath or From First to Last, but now they sound like a mix between the two bands to me. Especially if you hear what's on UnderOath's new album. Do I also sense some Hawthorne Heights? Yuck!

But really, while the first four songs are decent, plus maybe a few cool parts in other songs; none of them even come close to songs like "The Leaving Song II" or "Dancing Through Sunday," or much if any of their older stuff.[/font][/QUOTE]

AFI has always been an ever-changing band.
If you look at [I]Very Proud of Ya[/I] and [I]Answer That And Stay Fashionable[/I] and compare it to [I]Shut Your Mouth and Open Your Eyes[/I] , you would notice that the kind of "skater's punk rock for the high school kids" morphed into an album of hard guitars and alot of yelling.

And then you get the change from SYMAOYE to [I]Black Sails in the Sunset[/I] and later on, [I]Art of Drowning[/I] , where there was still those awesome guitars, but the best lyrics that Davey has produced as well as those awesome hooks that probably every AFI fan knows by heart.

And then you move from AOD to [I]Sing The Sorrow[/I] , which in my opinion, was a really big change. STS still had those songs that had everything which made for an awesome AFI song (ie: Leaving Song Part II, Miseria Cantare, and Death of Seasons (minus that electronica part)).

In fact, it was Death of Seasons that caused the buzz that the next album would have alot of electronica. It probably wouldn't be that bad if I was in the right mood, but I have other music for that, and I really miss the pre-STS AFI.

I like Hawthorne Heights and UnderOath, but what I liked about AFI was that they weren't like any other bands I have ever heard. Now it just doesn't really feel that way so much anymore. They may still be very different from most popular music, and at least that it will open up their fanbase, but I think that in turn they could lose alot of older fans who were disappointed in the change. Although there are a couple good songs on Decemberunderground, AFI used to be a band that had albums FULL of good songs. I'd rather listen to ATASF or AOD than STS or DU anytime.[/SIZE][/SIZE]
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[FONT=Arial]Okay, after a little over a week of contemplation, my slight disappointment turned into extreme love. I never knew there was this big mystery with clues inside the album. My absolute favorite song from this album is probably Kiss and Control, but I love them all almost equally. I'm also partial to The Interview now, and Endlessly She Said.

Has anyone heard the Miss Murder remix on their [U][URL=http://myspace.com/afi]myspace[/URL][/U]? They weren't responsible for it, but regardless...it's awkward to think of AFI producing techno after listening to Art of Drowning and Black Sails in the Sunset for the better half of my day.[/FONT]
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[font="arial"]Well, I don't really know a lot about it, but there's a 70 something page thread of speculation about this "mystery" on the AFI message board on their website. Supposedly, DU is linked with Sing the Sorrow (which was supposedly a concept album about a man who died and could not be reincarnated because he was born in the year of the rabbit...or something like that. I don't know if this is true at all, since wikipedia isn't completely reliable). I just know that there were hidden phone numbers that you could call and hear clues about it. There's also clues through out the album booklet...such as the little notes beneath the lyrics. Some people think it's a little connected to the book, Interview With the Vampire.

Personally. I think that Davey is actually a rabbit. And that's all there is to it. =P

I don't know why, but learning this makes me love this album and band ten million times more.[/font]
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  • 2 weeks later...
There is so much about all this.
I'm telling you, the Despair Faction (AFI's fanclub) is a cult-like following.
They read into everything.
Although I am a member of the DF, I don't participate in events anymore or even go to the site.
But I did find [URL=http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1527079/20060328/story.jhtml][b]this interesting article[/b][/URL] on MTV in regards to the "mystery".

There are always underlying mysteries involving AFI.. 336, Rabbits Are Roadkill to name a few. There are always hidden links that hardcore fans are more than happy to explore.

I also wanted to add, I burnt Decemberunderground, and after not liking it, I do like it alot more now, but I still prefer their older stuff. I feel that with the new album they alienate fans of their older and, in my opinion, better stuff.
But of course, true blue AFI fans will stick by them, I still love them, but I do long for AOD and BSITS. But perhaps I will continue supporting them and actually go out and buy the cd.
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I've been a huge AFI fan for 5 years now, and honstly, I love both their newer music and their older music. Whether it be back in the days of Answer All That And Stay Fashionable (or, if you **really** want to go back, back to their Dork EP) to the new Decemberunderground CD.

Yeah, their music has become a bit more mainstream. I mean, compare Miss Murder to He Who Laughs Last and you'd think it's a completely different band. (And, in a way, they are a completely different band now. Not that this is a bad thing, the band has matured. And, two members have been replaced to the change of music is to be expected.)

But, I'm really satisfyed with their new CD. Davey still hasn't lost his edge, Jade writes some more powerful songs and I'm deeply content with Hunter's bass lines and Adam's (as per usual) kicking drums.

Still, I highly recommend that everyone go and listen to so some older AFI music, especially if you enjoy their newer CDs. Go listen to Cereal Wars, a bouncy song about buying cereal or Rolling Balls, possibly the only song ever written about a man turning himself in a woman just so he can be on a bowling team.

Love Like Winter strikes my heart chords everytime it comes on though. I got a shirt from their concert with "I Taste of Blood" on the back of it, just out of sheer love of that song. :D

Whew, okay, I'm done now. But yesh, *nods* I love their new CD to pieces...
Hard to beileve that they've come this far. Who would have known that Ukiah, California could produce this? ;) (And to think, Davey once worked as a pear packer. Haha.)
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