After nine long years, a full band break up, a worldwide farewell tour, a reunion, and a few very solid festival slots to remind everyone that they haven’t lost their bark or their bite, Alexisonfire has returned with a new single, ‘Familiar Drugs‘.
When guitarist Dallas Green told PEDESTRIAN.TV late last year that he felt it was time for new music from the Canadian post-hardcore band, we didn’t realise it would literally be within the next three months. Jesus Christmas.
But it’s here, marking the next chapter from a book a lot of fans thought was closed and returned to the shelf after each member had gone on to pursue other creative outlets in bands like Dead Tired, City & Colour, Gallows, and Billy Talent.
The band teased the song a week or so ago, and dangled the release date on Instagram earlier this week, with three black squares that whip-smart fans realised were manipulated to hide a date; 15/02/19, and coordinates to Toronto, London, Los Angeles, and New York.
And considering Australia and New Zealand are the first ones to hit that midnight, it’s safe to assume that we’re also the first ones to hear the new music from the influential St. Catherines punks.
Anyway, enough faff, have a listen below. And if you’re like me, a person who literally has the band’s logo tattooed into her skin, you’ll have this on repeat for a good couple of hours.
Gritty and gnarly, ‘Familiar Drugs‘ holds its own as a single, but leaves me keen to hear how it will be moulded into the narrative of a larger release – an EP or a full album, I’m honestly happy with anything at this point.
The riffs are dominant and punchy; like the band have firmly put their foot down declaring “we’re back, and we’re not fucking around,” much to the absolute delight of fans who have been waiting for this day ever since the band talked about working on a new album back in 2011.
After a few listens and as the excitement settles, you can hear the intricacies – the influence that stoner rock bands like Sleep have had on the band, and how each person brings their past nine years and distils it into the track in their own way.
Frontman George Pettit said the track is about falling back into comfortable routines rather than trying to better yourself and hun, same.
‘Familiar Drugs’ is about recognizing you need to make a change in your life, being presented with the opportunity to make that change, and then choosing to do the same thing you always do. It’s about something very specific to me but it can be taken literally or interpreted in any number of ways. Most people have something in their lives they can’t quit: substances, unhealthy relationships, lethargy, self righteousness, a job they hate. ‘Familiar Drugs’ is about choosing comfort over self betterment.
It’s a huge way to re-establish themselves as a heavy-hitter in the music scene, but Alexisonfire are officially BACK, and this is very much the year of 20-nine-scene. Strap the fuck in, mates.
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