Seeing Red: DS Writer Catherine Dempsey on why Anti Flag’s “This Is The End” bores her to death

Is there anything worse than a bad song on a nearly perfect album? Probably, but for the sake of our series, Seeing Red, there isn’t. In Seeing Red we ask our staff writers to talk about the songs that they hate on albums that they love.

Today we have Dying Scene columnist Catherine Dempsey, who talks about her endless boredom with Anti-Flag‘s “This Is The End” off their 2006 record, For Blood and Empire. You can read her thoughts below.

For Blood And Empire is one hell of a punk record. From start to finish, it’s essentially perfect. From striking highs, like “The Project For A New American Century”, to more mellow tracks like “1 Trillion Dollar$,” it’s solid and catchy. A majority of the songs will get stuck in your head for hours, and Anti-Flag are no strangers to writing quick, likeable tracks.

For Blood And Empire was the first Anti-Flag album I ever bought, and it’s always going to be one of the integral pieces of work that shaped my young mind. Each song is roughly two minutes, and they all flow into each other to make for a wonderful, cohesive record.

I’m a shameless sucker for gang vocals and group clapping, so “The Project For A New American Century” is hands-down my favorite anthem on this piece, and I think it’s one of Anti-Flag’s most fun songs they’ve ever written. It’s equally memorable and threatening. “The Press Corpse” has the best melody, and the bridge is kind of creepy in a way, which makes it even more provocative, chanting, “We don’t want to talk about it / We don’t want to talk about it”.

It’s refreshing to know that Anti-Flag didn’t tone down their sound at all with this first major-label release. For Blood And Empire is just as dangerous as earlier works, like The Terror State and Underground Network. RCA Records seemingly had a hands-off approach and let Anti-Flag create the album they wanted, turning out to be just as unapologetically political.

Despite all the amazing things about For Blood And Empire, the one song that disappoints is “This Is The End.” It’s just a bit too power pop for my taste, and far too slow. The verses bore me to death and the chorus leaves little to be desired. I’m not shocked it was chosen as a single for all these reasons. It’s enjoyable for people who don’t typically listen to punk rock, because “This Is The End” is just an easy-listening track. It would be nice to hear this song at a faster pace.

For Blood And Empire kicks so much ass, and this one track certainly doesn’t ruin the entire record. But I can safely say that I skip “This Is The End” every time, without fail. Let’s lay that song to rest and forget about it – it’s forgetful to begin with.


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