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Sunday, October 1, 2023


New Wave’ causes riff

Against Me! has grown from its days as a Gainesville anarcho-acoustic act to one of the most talked about bands in rock music. The band is one of the main stage acts at Vans Warped Tour, and has attracted fans and bands alike.

"The tour has been great, really hot though," bassist Andrew Seward said. "I knew we’d be hanging out with people like the Street Dogs, The Briggs, Everytime I Die. The Angels and Airwaves guys come and hang out a lot."

2007’s New Wave marked the band’s major label debut and propelled them from a band the underground has been abuzz about for years, to the "next big thing." New Wave was met with critical acclaim but there was the obvious backlash from some fans.

"The thing is when Searching for a Former Clarity came out, people hated that record at first. Everyone was like ‘Eternal Cowboy was better,’ when Eternal Cowboy came out people said ‘Reinventing Axl Rose was the best,’" said Seward. "It never ends; it has always been going on. We don’t let it get to us at all. We like to play music and like our new songs a lot better than our old ones. Once we have a new record come out, maybe they’ll hate that one and like New Wave."

Newer acts such as The Gaslight Anthem and Fake Problems are heavily influenced by the sound Against Me! has helped pioneer to the forefront.

Against Me! isn’t your average punk band by any means, drawing heavily from folk influences.

"Any song, I think, should be able to be stripped down to just a guitar and a singer," Seward said. "That is a true test of a great song, if you ask me."

After Warped Tour, Against Me! will be playing the Summer Sonic Festival in Japan, as well as a full-Canadian tour in September. Against Me! will return to the U.S. for a fall tour with Ted Leo. Spin magazine called New Wave, the No.1 album of last year and despite the band’s recent success, they won’t let it get to their heads.

"We got a lot of critical acclaim that none of us saw coming," Seward said. "It is great, really nice to be complimented, but what I like best is to be the band that is polarizing. You either love it or hate it."

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