Year 3, Day 29: Against Me! – New Wave
- New Wave
- Up the Cuts
- Thrash Unreal
- White People for Peace
- Borne on the FM Waves of the Heart
- Piss and Vinegar
- Americans Abroad
- The Ocean
About the Album
New Wave is the fourth studio album from American rock band, Against Me!. The album was recorded from October to December of 2006 and was released through Sire Records in July of 2007. The album debuted at number 57 on the Billboard 200.
Thoughts on the Album
It’s funny. Whenever I hear fans of bands or music artists say “OMG THE BAND’S SOUND CHANGED! I HATE IT! SELLOUTS!!!!” after listening to albums, I laugh. Do they not realize that eventually, change happens. The band’s sound and style evolves. It happens… sometimes in order for the band to survive… sometimes for better, sometimes for worse. Bands and artists also mature and it’s impossible for them to keep the exact same sound they had on one album from the next. Or they risk becoming their own cover band.
I say that, because there seems to be a number of fans of Against Me! that wanted the band’s sound to stay exactly the same as it did on Reinventing Axl Rose. That is a ridiculous notion to have; growth and maturity is necessary, changing is inevitable.
All that said, Against Me!‘s 2008 album New Wave is a good album. What is said about applies to this album. It’s not a bad thing nor is it automatically bad. Their first major release through major record label, Sire, is a straight up rock one. The production of record is clean, direct, crisp, and sharp thanks to Butch Vig. It’s clean, but doesn’t have the gloss; it’s defiant and brash.
Yes, I’ll admit, it definitely doesn’t hit as hard or pack that powerful of punch as previous Against Me! albums. But it definitely has solid footing. The 10 tracks on this album aren’t raw or gritty as earlier ones, these tracks definitely make up for it with passion. The passion is there.
The album opens with the title track, New Wave. It’s rolling drums and opening guitar riff, power the song. It’s crisp and clean rock & roll in a short blast, recognizing the banality of mainstream. This frustration and fury found through the album underscores lead single, White People for Peace. It’s track that recognizes the need for protest songs, but also the futility of them. Thrash Unreal is a real hard rocking song. It is a foot-stomping track thanks you want to thrash about in a mosh pit. The harmonies are spot on and on point as you will be singing along to it.
Relatively short and sweet. The beauty of this album is that the songs on this album are absolutely fun to listen to, without them being complete fluff. Signing with a major label doesn’t make you a sellout… not when the music on the album is still being delivered with such steadfast and genuine conviction and emotion. The album clocks in at a little over 35 minutes, so it’s concise and to the point in it’s delivery. The lack of acoustic tracks gives this album it’s identity as it deviates from traditional Against Me! releases.
Two things to sum up: 1) don’t just compare it to earlier material. You can’t. 2) Against Me! has found a way to bring their joyful chaos to the radio and introduce it to more and more people.