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Alive [Live]
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A.F.I.
April 2003

Long a force to be reckoned with on the underground scene, San Francisco Bay-area band A.F.I. (‘A Fire Inside’) is in the Rock Express Spotlight this week with "Bleed Black." It’s the second single from their Dreamworks album "Sing The Sorrow."

Flanked by legions of devoted fans, A.F.I. began over 10 years ago in a garage in the small town of Ukiah, California. Although the first incarnations of A.F.I. surfaced in 1992 on "Dork," it wasn’t until the band's third full-length, 1997's "Shut Your Mouth And Open Your Eyes," that bassist Hunter (ex-the Force) enlisted. And it was still later Jade (by then ex-Redemption 87) signed on, coalescing the present A.F.I. lineup on the defining and now-classic fourth album "Black Sails In The Sunset," and the subsequent "All Hallow's" EP. The latter would give A.F.I. its first taste of exposure beyond its long-cultivated cult following when the Offspring's cover of the EP's "Totalimmortal" appeared on the "Me, Myself & Irene" soundtrack and, in turn, on Modern Rock playlists nationwide. A year later, "Days Of The Phoenix," from "The Art Of Drowning," would do the same, but this time with the band playing its own composition.

"I was completely in awe then - and still am now - to hear any of our songs on the radio," says Hunter. "The fact that radio would pick up on us based solely on the quality of the music is still difficult for me to fathom."

In the meantime, A.F.I.'s live draw increased exponentially, cultivating rabidly devoted fans over nearly seven years of non-stop worldwide touring. "Touring has always been the most important thing for us," says drummer Adam Carson, who co-founded the band with singer Davey Havok. "We basically created our fan base by touring non-stop."

"We've been doing this for a long time, and we love it more than anything," says Havok. "To play music you're passionate about every night - it's like a dream. Sometimes you get sick; sometimes you get really tired, but I can't imagine doing anything else with my life."

Co-produced by Jerry Finn (Rancid, Green Day, Jawbreaker) and Butch Vig (Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins), "Sing The Sorrow" retains A.F.I.’s signature aggression and pathos. "Everybody says, 'This is our best record yet!' every time they come out with something new," Jade says. "I know it's a total cliché, but in our case, we're always pleased with our latest record because each one is different from the previous one."

This year, A.F.I. will once again join the Used, Simple Plan, Rancid, the Distillers, Pennywise, Face to Face and Glassjaw on the annual punk rock summer camp known as the Warped Tour. Warped kicks off June 19th in Boise, Idaho, and wraps up August 10th in Asbury Park, New Jersey.

Tour Dates:

04/02/2003 Davis, CA Freeborn Hall
04/04/2003 Seattle, WA Northgate Theatre
04/05/2003 Portland, OR Roseland Theater
04/07/2003 Boise, ID Big Easy
04/08/2003 Salt Lake City, UT Bricks
04/09/2003 Denver, CO Ogden Theatre
04/11/2003 Minneapolis, MN Quest Club
04/12/2003 Chicago, IL Riviera Theatre
04/13/2003 Pontiac, MI Clutch Cargo
04/15/2003 Cleveland, OH Agora Theatre

 



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