Decemberunderground

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Decemberunderground
AFI - Decemberunderground cover.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedJune 6, 2006
StudioConway Recording Studios, Los Angeles, California;
Sage & Sound Recording, Los Angeles, California
Genre
Length45:06
LabelInterscope
ProducerJerry Finn
AFI chronology
Sing the Sorrow
(2003)
Decemberunderground
(2006)
Crash Love
(2009)
Singles from Decemberunderground
  1. "Miss Murder"
    Released: April 3, 2006
  2. "Love Like Winter"
    Released: September 26, 2006
  3. "The Missing Frame"
    Released: February 27, 2007

Decemberunderground (stylized in all caps) is the seventh studio album by American rock band AFI. The album was released on June 6, 2006 through Interscope Records. The album was supported by three singles, "Miss Murder", "Love Like Winter" and "The Missing Frame".

Recording[edit]

Recording took place at Conway Recording Studios and Sage & Sound Recording Studios in Los Angeles, California. Sessions were produced by Jerry Finn with Joe McGrath handling recording. They were assisted by engineers Seth Waldmann, Jason Gossman, Kevin Mills, Eric Weaver, Dimitar Krnjaic and Keith Armstrong. In addition to Puget's programming and keyboards, Ronan Harris of VNV Nation and Dave McCracken contributed additional programming and keyboards. Finn and Chris Lord-Alge mixed the recordings at Conway Studios and Resonate Music. Ted Jensen mastered the recordings at Sterling Sound in New York City.[1]

Music[edit]

Described as alternative rock,[2] synthwave,[3] emo[4][5] and post-hardcore,[6] Decemberunderground features elements of electronic music, new wave, industrial, gothic rock, punk rock, hardcore punk[4] and synthpop.[7][8] Ed Thompson of IGN compared the album to bands such as U2, The Cure, The Smiths, Depeche Mode and Alphaville.[8] Alternative Press compared the album to 1980s synthwave music.[3]

Regarding the album's title, lead singer Davey Havok said, "Decemberunderground is a time and a place. It is where the cold can huddle together in darkness and isolation."[9]

The album's title is derived from a lyric in the song "The Interview".

Release[edit]

The album's lead single "Miss Murder" was given a thirty-second preview on LIVE 105 on April 11, 2006, and due to an overwhelming response, Interscope Records gave the station permission to play the entire track. "Miss Murder" was released to radio on April 25.[10] The full track listing of the album was announced on the same day.[11] Decemberunderground was released on May 29, in the United Kingdom, June 6, in the United States, and June 16 in Mexico. Customers who pre-ordered the album at special pre-listening events received a CD of the "Miss Murder" single, which also contained a cover of INXS's song "Don't Change". The first pressing of the CD in the United States contained a limited edition insert with one of four band member portraits.[12] "Love Like Winter" was released to radio on September 26.[10] The album was re-released on November 7, 2006, on 6 "icy clear" 7" vinyl. The individual record sleeves featured band member portraits, as well as a portrait of the band's manager Smith Puget.[13]

In March 2007, the band went on a brief west coast tour of the U.S.[14]

AFI held their last concert in promotion of the album at Download Fest in October 2007. Havok and Puget then began to promote their side-project Blaqk Audio before beginning work on the eighth AFI album, Crash Love.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4/5 stars[4]
Blender5/5 stars[15]
Entertainment WeeklyB+[16]
Exclaim!(favorable)[17]
IGN8.5/10[8]
Kerrang!(3/5)
NME6/10 stars[7]
Robert ChristgauC+[18]
Rolling Stone3/5 stars [19]
StylusC+[20]
Slant Magazine4/5 stars[21]
Alternative Press4.5/5 stars[3]
Punknews.org4/5 stars[22]

Commercial performance[edit]

It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, selling 182,000 copies in its first week of being released.[23] The album was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on August 30, 2006 and has sold at least 993,000 copies in the United States as of September 2009.[24][25] The album was eligible for platinum certification in 2007 and received it from RIAA in 2013.[9]

Critical response[edit]

Decemberunderground received generally positive reviews. The review aggregator Metacritic awarded the album a 72 out of 100, based on 15 reviews.[26]

Entertainment Weekly awarded the album a grade of B+, and called it "the most melodically acute distillation of that style yet,"[16] unlike their previous studio album Sing the Sorrow, which they awarded a D. AllMusic awarded the album 4 out of 5 stars, saying the "core of AFI's sound never strays too far from what listeners have grown to love about them in the first place."[4]

Rolling Stone awarded the album 3 out of 5 stars, one less star than their review of Sing the Sorrow, and claimed that "something isn't right in the world of AFI," because of their pop-rock musical structure "that would be at home on the soundtrack to the next Spider-Man movie".[19]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by AFI, except where noted.

No.TitleLength
1."Prelude 12/21"1:34
2."Kill Caustic"2:39
3."Miss Murder"3:26
4."Summer Shudder"3:06
5."The Interview"4:16
6."Love Like Winter"2:45
7."Affliction"5:28
8."The Missing Frame"4:40
9."Kiss and Control"4:18
10."The Killing Lights"4:04
11."37mm"3:55
12."Endlessly, She Said"4:26
Total length:45:06

Personnel[edit]

Credits for Decemberunderground adapted from the album liner notes.[1]

Bonus tracks, B-sides, unreleased tracks, etc.[edit]

All tracks recorded during the Decemberunderground sessions unless otherwise noted.

  • "Rabbits are Roadkill on Rt. 37" was recorded during the Sing the Sorrow sessions, and was eventually released on the MySpace Records: Volume 1 compilation and as a bonus track on the UK and Australian editions of Decemberunderground.
  • "Head Like a Hole" is a Nine Inch Nails cover and was included on the video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas soundtrack. It was re-released on the UK, Australian, German, and Japanese editions of Decemberunderground.
  • "Don't Change" is an INXS cover and was released on the "Miss Murder" 7" vinyl disc and the Japanese edition of Decemberunderground.
  • "Jack the Ripper" is a Morrissey cover and was available as a bonus track on the iTunes pre-ordered edition and the UK and Australian editions of the "Love Like Winter" single.
  • "On the Arrow" was available as a bonus track on the iTunes pre-ordered edition and the Australian edition of the "Love Like Winter" single.
  • "Fallen Like the Sky" was available as a Target bonus track download and available on the 7" vinyl disc box set edition of Decemberunderground.
  • "Carcinogen Crush" was recorded during the Sing the Sorrow sessions, but did not make the album. It was eventually re-recorded and available as a downloadable track on the video game Guitar Hero: Legends of Rock and as a digital single on December 4, 2007.
  • "Fainting Spells" was recorded during the Decemberunderground sessions, and was eventually released on the deluxe edition of Crash Love.
  • "Then I'll Be Home" can be heard at the end of the track "Affliction".
  • "The View From Here" was recorded during the Decemberunderground sessions and leaked online in 2016.

Chart positions[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Decemberunderground (Booklet). AFI. Interscope Records. 2006. 9858643.
  2. ^ McFarland, Kevin (April 15, 2014). "With Decemberunderground, AFI rode tacit approval all the way to the top". The A.V. Club. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
  3. ^ a b c "AFI - Decemberunderground - Reviews - Alternative Press". Alternative Press. Retrieved 18 January 2018.
  4. ^ a b c d Apar, Corey (2006). "allmusic ((( Decemberunderground > Review ))):". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2006-06-17.
  5. ^ Jamie Jones (September 18, 2015). "Can You Name The Classic Emo Album By The Cover Art?". Buzzfeed.
  6. ^ Yancey, Bryne (October 22, 2013). "AFI - Burials". Punknews.org.
  7. ^ a b Dan Silver. "AFI: Decemberunderground - Album Reviews - NME.com".
  8. ^ a b c Thompson, Ed (June 5, 2006). "AFI - Decemberunderground". IGN. Archived from the original on February 25, 2012. Retrieved July 19, 2017.
  9. ^ a b "AFI Official Biography". AFI Official Website. Archived from the original on 2012-02-25. Retrieved 2006-05-27.
  10. ^ a b "FMQB Airplay Archive: Modern Rock". Friday Morning Quarterback Album Report, Incorporated. Archived from the original on March 22, 2013. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
  11. ^ "AFI Reveals Track Listing". Aversion.com Music News. Retrieved 2006-05-27.[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ AFI | Official Site Archived 2006-10-05 at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ [7] Archived November 14, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ "AFI announce West Coast tour". Alternative Press. January 25, 2007. Retrieved August 8, 2016.
  15. ^ "Decemberunderground review".[permanent dead link]
  16. ^ a b Tom Sinclair (2006-06-05). "DECEMBERUNDERGOUND - Music - EW.com". Entertainment Weekly.
  17. ^ Ariana Rock. "AFI - December Underground".
  18. ^ Robert Christgau. "Robert Christgau: Album: AFI: December Underground".
  19. ^ a b Strauss, Neil (2006). "Rolling Stone : Decemberunderground : Review". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2006-06-17.
  20. ^ "Decemberunderground review". Archived from the original on 2010-02-01.
  21. ^ Scott Shetler. "AFI: Decemberunderground rewvie". Archived from the original on 2009-08-27.
  22. ^ Paul, Aubin (June 6, 2006). "AFI - Decemberunderground". Punknews.org.
  23. ^ "AFI Burns Brightly With No. 1 Debut". Billboard. 2006-06-14.
  24. ^ "Gold and Platinum Database Search". Retrieved 2009-08-07.[permanent dead link]
  25. ^ Wood, Mikael. "AFI Revs Up The Rock On 'Crash Course'". Billboard September 14, 2009.
  26. ^ "Decemberunderground by AFI". Retrieved 18 January 2018.
  27. ^ a b c d e f "AFI Burns Brightly With No. 1 Debut". billboard.com. 2006.
  28. ^ "ARIA Charts - Accreditations - 2006 Albums". Ariacharts.com.au. Archived from the original on 2011-05-15. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  29. ^ "Search Results for AFI". Recording Industry Association of America. Archived from the original on 2015-09-04.

External links[edit]