I've got this album from my friend some time ago, listening to it gives me pleasure, It was first album of Anti-Flag that I've heard, and still my favorite one. Songs are full of energy, when you listen to it you feel it hitting you, these guys probably used some dark magic to create such power! Compared to other punk bands this one sings really clearly, even when this type of music is about making noise, lyrics are actually its main part and Anti-Flag did a great job singing it clear and loud. Music itself is great, drums are fast as hell, the drummer must have put all his heart in creation of each song, guitarists are great as well, there are some good solos and even the "boring" parts of the songs sound really good as the rhythm plays hard, melody fits it and together they sound really great. Bass guitar does it job as well in some songs it do the main job, its fast, loud and sounds amazingly with the rest of the instruments. You can hear that the boys from A-F used lot's of techniques, and have bring new things to their sound, making themselves even more original than they were before. Lyrics are really good, again they are from heart of people who resist the tyranny, who are tired of being slaves, who want more from life than tv channels etc.
Underground Network is one of the best Punk albums I've ever heard, the only minus might be that the songs sounds little bit too similar, but what do you want from a Punk band? If you like to listen to punk, or want to get know more about it, if you already listen to punk and needs some music to keep you going in fight against tyranny this album is your best shot!
Underground network was the album that really proved the capabilities of anti flag. They have struggled in recent years in my opinion to replicate the high standards set by this excellent album. The album begins with great spirit and vigor with 'angry,young and poor' which sets a fast tempo which is followed throughout most of the album. There is not a single standout poor track on this record, each of them have their value and therefore all 13 of the songs are worth listening to over and over again. The riffs are catchy and well in tune with the song.Justin's vocals are generally powerfully and portray some oustanding lyrics which send out very convincing messages to listeners. The only song which doesnt really fit this message is perhaps spaza's house destruction party which although is a good song, sounds out of place when compared to the rest of the album. It is difficult to single out songs, but my favourite are culture revolution and bring out your dead because of their dramatic choruses. This is by far the best anti-flag album because of its consistency. It has a very powerful political message which is not dulled down as much as later albums and there is a more lot of energy and creativity in this album. Anti-flag fans must own this album but it is also recommended for fans of punk bands such as bad religion and rise against.
'Underground Network' is the album that broke Pennsylvanian political punk rockers Anti-Flag into the relative rock mainstream, though their controversial shift to a major record label was still some years away. Anti-Flag's politics form an important part of their music and image, but wary listeners will likely find this a surprisingly melodic album, interspersed with the occasional heavy guitar or raw vocal but mostly led by imaginative bass, fun and simple guitar chords and brief solos and a squeaky singing performance comparable to AFI's Davey Havok, if he was singing about contemporary US politics rather than pumpkins and dead girlfriends or whatever it is that AFI songs are about these days.
I think I was a little surprised and disappointed when I first heard this album around the time of its release, expecting some fast-paced, raw, complete-Clash-rip-off punk in the vein of Rancid, but despite this initial setback it proved to be a fairly enjoyable album, if a bit lacking in ideas. The political edge may be a little irritating to listeners who couldn't give a damn, but for those who can, and those form the majority of these bands' fan bases, the themes touched upon are varied (if a little obvious) and some extra effort has been spared in reprinting political essays within the album booklet itself. The spoken word call for listeners to abandon the corporate-controlled mass media in the title track is thus a bit distracting and unnecessary, but the rest of the time it's easy enough to ignore the words being said and simply enjoy the Ramones-style melodies they make.
Similarly to Rancid and others, the band rotates between vocalists when the subject matter requires a distinctly harsher tone, as seen in 'The Machine Kills Fascists' and the energetic 'Bring Out Your Dead' among a couple of others, but other songs are content to be more radio-friendly and accessible by focusing more on a catchy, repetitive chorus, the opening song and 'Underground Network' being prime examples, the latter especially obvious for including a chorus specifically designed for crowd chanting at live performances. 'Spaz's House Destruction Party' stands out for being the major narrative song, and the only real time that the lyrics overpower the music (aside from the aforementioned spoken word thing in track three), and perhaps the most interesting song of all from a technical perspective is 'The Panama Deception,' with its radical shift from fast verses to a chilled reggae/ska chorus, before the second half changes completely.
The rest of the songs tend to sound pretty much the same, with some falling into the faster Rancid style or sing-along melodic punk in the style of the Ramones and modern equivalents. While it's not the most consistent or inspired punk rock album of the decade, it provided a worthwhile contribution at a time when clean-cut pop-punk was dominating the rock charts with its bouncy power chords and pathetic "my girlfriend left me for the school jock" type lyrics. Anti-Flag's political angle may not have inspired America's youth in the same way their progenitors did, and indeed the capitalist system remains un-toppled in spite of their efforts, but this is a decent enough album of traditional punk with modern influences that could easily appeal to a wider audience, though it won't be many peoples' favourite.
1. Angry Young and Poor
2. This Machine Kills Fascists
3. Underground Network
4. Daddy Warbux
5. Vieques Puerto Rico Bikini Revisited
6. Stars and Stripes
7. Watch the Right
8. The Panama Deception
9. Culture Revolution
10. Spaz's House Destruction Party
11. Bring Out Your Dead
12. A Start
13. Until it Happens to You
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Angry Young And Poor
2 This Machine Kills Fascists
3 Underground Network
4 Daddy Warbux
5 Vieques Puerto Rico: Bikini Revisited
6 Stars And Stripes
7 Watch The Right
8 Panama Deception
9 Culture Revolution
10 Spaz's House Destruction Party
11 Bring Out Your Dead
13 Until It Happens To You