After three years from the previous Fat Wreck album The Terror State, Anti-Flag are back with their major label debut, For Blood And Empire, a record that will surely sign a new point in the band's history. It's real nice to see that despite the band is releasing a major label album, they did not leave their beliefs behind their backs, and it is awesome how ""For Blood And Empire"" is not influenced by major label marketing strategies, as Anti-Flag still shout out their anthems and their ideals.
Starting from the opening single ""The Press Corpse"", where they deal about how the media hides real facts, to the smashing ""The W.T.O. Kills Farmers"", where you can hear shaking punk rock breakdowns. Musically, the first thing that you notice when you pop the cd into your stereo, is the presence of new elements that we never heard on Anti-Flag's songs before: on ""Hymn For The Dead"" you can hear horns and trumpets in the middle of the song, making it a real anthem, while on the semi-acoustic ballad ""One Trillion Dollars"" you can hear violins and strings.
The production, due to Dave Schiffman (Thrice, Red Hot Chili Peppers, System Of A Down, Audioslave) is top notch but he did not influence the band's music making it sound polished or cleaner: Anti-Flag is rawer than ever, on such tunes as the dirty ""State Funeral"", or on ""Exodus"", a real hardcore anthem. If you think Anti-Flag is all about politics and criticism towards American Governemnt, just wait till you hear the skanking ""War Sucks, Let's Party!"", where ska rhythms are fused together with old school punk rock.
The main idea behind For Blood And Empire is that on this concept album the band revolves around an unnerving neo-conservative think tank called the Project for a New American Century (PNAC), and the incredible cohesive power of the album comes out through not just music, but lyrics too. For Blood And Empire is quite possibly the best punk rock album released in the last years, where a real punk rock band has no fear to speak out the voice of the truth.