After toiling away in the California punk underground for years (and five studio releases), 2003 was the year AFI broke into the mainstream with its smash Sing the Sorrow, which showcased its burgeoning genre of gothic new-wave punk. It might seem odd to release an album entitled DecemberUnder-ground in early summer, but don’t let the chilly tone of the title keep you from enjoying it. This anthemic album demands to be blared long and loud. Diverse tunes such as “Miss Murder,” “Summer Shudder” and “The Killing Lights”continue to keep AFI from being pigeonholed as the next band in the long line of Warped Tour cliches.
—Trevor Savory

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