Just two more days until we get to hear the new Flobots record (they are going to have copies of the new disc, right? It is a CD release party, after all). Suffice to say, we're eager to hear how much, if any, the outfit has grown since issuing its debut, Fight With Tools, in 2008, which Universal pretty much re-released from band's the self-released version.
While the jury's still out on the rest of the album, we finally had a chance to listen to the full version of "White Flag Warriors," presumably the first single from Survival Story, due out this Tuesday, March 16. Our initial thoughts? The track boasts a solid groove, and Mackenzie Roberts' viola creates tension and adds noticeable intensity. The chorus has anthemic quality thanks to a strong hook that will have you singing along with after the first listen.
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Lyrically, there's a number of incisive, thought provoking lines such as, "Won't study war no more this millennium/It's never again for me or anyone/So think harder when you refer to us/Rather make our children martyrs than murderers," as well as a few turns of phrase that don't seem to cut nearly as deep: "They say war is necessary, but we say war is child abuse."
Overall, despite a few misteps -- after an intro that simulates Jonny 5 speaking into a megaphone, declaring the act's manifesto ("We come to you unarmed/We desire to communicate/You cannot do us harm/, the vocals"), the vocals are inexplicably pushed them into the background and don't really pack much punch until the second verse, which ends up diluting some of their potency -- overall, Jonny 5 and Brer Rabbit infuse the track with a dependable sense of urgency.
Hear the song live and see what you think this Friday, March 12 at the Ogden Theatre at Flobots CD release show with The Pirate Signal and Air Dubai. If you can't make it that show, which should be pretty memorable -- the band hasn't played a hometown show for a while -- you can catch Jonny 5 and company this Tuesday, March 16 at Twist & Shout for a special in-store appearance.