AFI - AFI (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


AFI (2004)


I'll be the first to admit - this is almost a pointless review. Chances are that if you're reading this, you've already made up your mind on whether you hate, love, or carry no leaning opinion towards the once-East-Bay-hardcore-punk-outfit-turned-gothic-rockers AFI. So where does their Nitro Records perspective leave you?

Pretty much out of the psychographic.

Purely intended as a proper introduction to fans first associated with AFI from their 2003 major label debut full-length, Sing The Sorrow, AFI's self-titled retrospective album chronicles the band's back catalog, taking cuts from the band's five full-lengths and two EPs, and even throws in a couple rare tracks: "A Winter's Tale" comes from the Days Of The Phoenix single, "Lower It" from the vinyl version of Black Sails In The Sunset, and "Rolling Balls" and "Who Said You Could Touch Me?," both from the vinyl version of Very Proud Of Ya. The rest of the album comes from the readily available compact discs in stores everywhere.

For these said new fans, it's a nice sampler of material that serves well for the ones looking to reap the benefits of the band's back catalog. The sequencing is mostly chronological, save for the twelfth of fiteen tracks, 1995's "I Wanna Get A Mohawk." "The Lost Souls" and "The Days Of The Phoenix" are widely regarded as two of the best tracks from The Art Of Drowning (hopefully not to the point where these listeners have previously heard them), and their inclusion here is appropriate. The tracks from the two EPs are nice surprises, and the fact that song lengths were taken into account when including older material are appreciative (the vinyl version of Very Proud Of Ya alone has four tracks).

For the rest of the current fans, it basically serves as a recommended mix tape of older material, one you could likely collaborate from your own recordings. The vinyl-only rare tracks are appetizing bites that could move a few copies from vinyl-straying fans looking for rarer material, but for the most part, it's doubtful many of them would be big on what's essentially to them a fifteen-song greatest hits compilation devoid of AFI's newest effort.