The End Is Near (Five Iron Frenzy album)

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The End Is Near
Studio album by Five Iron Frenzy
Released June 18, 2003 (limited release studio album)
April 20, 2004 (studio and live double set)
Recorded November 22, 2003 (live)
Genre Christian ska, modern rock
Length 45:02 (self release)
Disc 1: 79:13 (re-release)
Disc 2: 78:43 (re-release)
Label Five Minute Walk
Producer

Frank Tate

Cover of self-released studio album
Five Iron Frenzy chronology
Cheeses...(of Nazareth)
(2003)
The End is Near Here
(2004)
Engine of a Million Plots
(2013)

The End is Near is the fifth album by Five Iron Frenzy, self-released on June 18, 2003. The album was later widely re-released as a part of double album titled The End is Here (stylized as The End is Near Here) by Five Minute Walk Records on April 20, 2004. The double album includes both the studio album and a live recording of the band's final concert performance. The album was intended as the band's last as was the tour used to promoted it, until the band announced a reunion in 2011 and new album, Engine of a Million Plots released in 2013.[1]

Packaging & Release[edit]

The End is Here was recorded in early 2003 and sold directly by the band during their farewell tour and through their official website.[citation needed] The cover and packaging artwork was done by Doug TenNapel, the visual artist who had previously worked on three other Five Iron Frenzy covers.[2] The packaging for The End is Near features a red motif for the cover and artwork while the re-release, The End is Here, includes a green layout. Otherwise both versions contain the same artwork by TenNapel. The earlier self-released version is missing a barcode and instead included a blank space reading "I LAST SAW FIVE IRON FRENZY ON" which the band themselves stamped with that day's date when sold from their merchandise tables on their farewell tour.

On November 22, 2003 at the Fillmore Auditorium in Denver, Colorado, the band played their final show and recorded it. On April 20, 2004, the double disc set The End is Here (stylized as The End is Near Here) was released for widely distributed retail. This set includes the studio album and the final performance on two separate discs. An exclusive inclusion on the double disc set was one extra studio track "The Cross of Saint Andrew" which was not included on the earlier self-released version of the studio album.

Both versions of the CD where packaged with a cardboard slipcover over the standard CD jewel case, which was bundled with a high-quality 15-page booklet containing band photographs, artwork by TenNapel, lyrics and words of farewell to the fans. Inside the front lid of the jewel case of the earlier self-released version was a simple one sheet reproduction of the cover, while inside the front lid of the double disc set was a fold out poster featuring a collage of photographs from the band's farewell performance.

Music[edit]

The song "Wizard Needs Food, Badly" is a reference to the 1985 arcade game Gauntlet, and the song features a sample of the line spoken in the video game. "That's How the Story Ends" is a song stylized along the lines of "The Raven," a poem by Edgar Allan Poe. Backmasking dialog at the beginning of the song is lead singer Reese Roper saying "Sandwiches, they make the best friends." Lyrically the song makes reference to past Five Iron Frenzy songs and gives epilogues to the narrative of those songs. The songs referenced are "Where Is Micah?", "Blue Comb '78", "Shut Up", "The Untimely Death of Brad", "These Are Not My Pants (The Rock Opera)", "Combat Chuck", "Kitty Doggy" and "Kingdom of the Dinosaurs". The coda of the song "On Distant Shores" is borrowed from Five Iron Frenzy's "Every New Day," a song that closed all their live performances.

Both versions of the studio album feature a hidden track of Five Iron Frenzy talking in the recording studio. Additionally the studio album on the double disc set features a second hidden track composed of outtakes from the final performance which includes mostly stage banter that was cut from the second disc for pacing purposes.

Included in the live performance of the their final show is a medley of Five Iron Frenzy performing selections from popular songs they were unable to perform in their entirety during the show. This track is inexplicably absent from recent digital versions of the album like those on Spotify and iTunes. No exact reasons for this exclusion has been stated by the band. It can also be noted that no permission is listed in the album's copyright notes for the inclusion of the Dan Hill song "Sometimes When We Touch." The medley is broken down as follows:

  1. [0:00 - 2:20] - "A Flowery Song" (Upbeats and Beatdowns)
  2. [2:20 - 2:52] - "Suckerpunch" (Our Newest Album Ever!)
  3. [2:52 - 4:00] - "One Girl Army" (Quantity Is Job 1)
  4. [4:00 - 4:36] - "My Evil Plan To Save The World" (Quantity Is Job 1)
  5. [4:36 - 5:20] - "Sometimes When We Touch" (Dan Hill's Longer Fuse)
  6. [5:20 - 5:56] - "Pre-Ex Girlfriend" (Electric Boogaloo)
  7. [5:56 - 6:31] - "Combat Chuck" (Upbeats and Beatdowns)
  8. [6:31 - 7:08] - "Dandelions" (Quantity Is Job 1)
  9. [7:08 - 7:31] - "Superpowers" (Our Newest Album Ever!)
  10. [7:31 - 8:05] - "Cool Enough For You" (Upbeats and Beatdowns)

Reception[edit]

Both the original version of the studio album and the double disc studio and live set received positive reviews.

Jesus Freak Hideout reviewed the album of its original self-released form and gave the album a 4.5 out of 5 rating.[3] Cross Rhythms also reviewing the first version of the studio album gave it a 10 out of 10.[4]

Reviewing the double disc set The Phantom Tollbooth gave the it a five out of five.[5] Likewise, HM Magazine music critic Doug Van Pelt stated that the live material captured the raw energy and spiritual fervor that the band was known for.[6]

Track listing[edit]

Self-Released "Red" version[edit]

No. Title Length
1. "Cannonball"   3:44
2. "At Least I'm Not Like All Those Other Old Guys"   2:09
3. "So Far, So Bad"   3:03
4. "New Years Eve"   3:53
5. "American Kryptonite"   3:15
6. "It Was Beautiful"   2:47
7. "Wizard Needs Food, Badly"   3:12
8. "Farewell To Arms"   4:03
9. "See The Flames Begin To Crawl"   3:16
10. "Anchors Away"   3:32
11. "Something Like Laughter"   3:13
12. "That's How The Story Ends"   3:38
13. "On Distant Shores"   10:15
14. "Hidden Track"   6:31

Retail released "Green" version[edit]

Disc one – The End is Near (Studio Album)
No. Title Length
1. "Cannonball"   3:44
2. "At Least I'm Not Like All Those Other Old Guys"   2:09
3. "So Far, So Bad"   3:03
4. "New Years Eve"   3:53
5. "American Kryptonite"   3:15
6. "It Was Beautiful"   2:47
7. "Wizard Needs Food, Badly"   3:12
8. "Farewell To Arms"   4:03
9. "See The Flames Begin To Crawl"   3:16
10. "Anchors Away"   3:32
11. "Something Like Laughter"   3:13
12. "That's How The Story Ends"   3:38
13. "On Distant Shores"   5:17
14. "Cross of St. Andrew"   34:10
Disc two – The End is Here (Farewell Live Performance, Recorded November 22, 2003)
No. Title Length
1. "Intro"   0:13
2. "Old West"   2:14
3. "Handbook For The Sellout"   3:31
4. "Where 0 Meets 15"   4:20
5. "Cannonball"   3:19
6. "Blue Comb '78"   4:23
7. "At Least I'm Not Like All Those Other Old Guys"   1:53
8. "You Probably Shouldn't Move Here"   4:03
9. "Oh Canada"   3:56
10. "When I Go Out"   1:45
11. "See The Flames Begin To Crawl"   3:13
12. "Vultures"   3:26
13. "You Can't Handle This"   4:42
14. "American Kryptonite"   3:05
15. "The Phantom Mullet"   3:12
16. "Medley"   9:13
17. "A New Hope"   2:35
18. "World Without End"   6:03
19. "Every New Day"   13:31

Charts[edit]

Album - Billboard (North America)

Year Chart Position
2004 Top Heatseekers 13

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Five Iron Frenzy Kickstarter Account". New Five Iron Frenzy Album!!!!. Kickstarter. Retrieved February 8, 2013. 
  2. ^ TenNapel did the artwork for Our Newest Album Ever!, Quantity Is Job 1, and Proof That the Youth Are Revolting.
  3. ^ Jesus Freak Hideout review
  4. ^ Hossain, Aleem (November 2003). "Five Iron Frenzy - The End Is Near". Cross Rhythms (77). 
  5. ^ link
  6. ^ Van Pelt, Doug (May–June 2004). "The End Is Here". HM Magazine (107): 12. ISSN 1066-6923.