Anti-Flag gets political

Mar 062002
Authors: Rachel Spannuth

Politicians beware! Anti-Flag is still contorting political views everywhere.

Anti-Flag, a prominent political punk band that debuted in 1993, is currently on their own “Mobilize Peace” tour with bands such as Against All Authority, Thrice and Pipedown.

The band, made up of Justin Sane (vocals), Pat Thetic (drums), Chris Head (vocals and guitar), and Chris No. 2 (bass and vocals). The members all state their age as 19. According to Chris No. 2 in an interview with KCSU, “We’ve all been 19 for a number of years. We don’t really want to grow up.” It’s a way for them to cling to their ideals and innocence.

A straight-edge band from Pittsburgh, the band enjoys discussing political issues in their songs. They don’t claim to have all the answers, according to Chris No. 2, but they feel it is their responsibility to inform their fans that there is other news that goes on that main news sources neglect.

The band cites they are inspired by all music that exists. This includes singers like Britney Spears and the Backstreet Boys, though they inspire Anti-Flag what not to sound like.

The tour is named “Mobilize Peace” because the band wants to promote pacifism among its listeners. Anti-Flag feels that through their albums, they have limited say. Each song is only two to three minutes, and there isn’t any discourse with the listener.

At shows they can discuss the importance of non-violence, something very important to the band. It has worked so far, according to Chris No. 2, since there have been no fights or violence at any of their shows on the tour.

The group has been criticized recently for its seemingly unpatriotic views and messages. Chris No. 2 countered with the fact that they love this country. Their friends and family all live in America, and it is a country that allows them to speak their minds. For that reason, they feel it is their responsibility to give voice to those who don’t have one. They support groups like Amnesty International and provoke thought about injustices that happen both in the United States and around the world.

The group formed its own record label, A-F records, in an attempt to sponsor and support bands that held the same viewpoints Anti-Flag held important. Among the bands on A-F records are The Unseen, Pipedown, Virus Nine, The Methadones and The Code.

Recently, the group released an album on Fat Wreck Chords entitled “Underground Network.” They also released a live album on their own label last month entitled “Mobilize.” n

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