This band has been near and dear to my heart ever since my anxious teenage high school days. American Football was a band I held to the most high, with Brand New sitting second place among the greats. “American Football (LP2)” represents a culmination of the last 17 years of maturity for the band who first put out their self-titled full length more than a decade ago. I jumped straight into this album with very high expectations as a fan of the first, and let me tell you, I was a little let down but otherwise, perfectly content.
The album opens with the track “Where Are We Now?” a fitting name for the first track for the band to put out in almost two decades. It opens with a trickling guitar chorus, very distant yet growing increasingly closer. The track’s name is hauntingly spoken in a very delicate manner that elicits chills from the listener’s body. This is the first time I’ve heard Mike Kinsella’s voice as the singer for AF in a very long time. If compared to the first album, his voice has grown up like the lyrics. You can tell in other tracks that the band has grown both in experience and talent.
Tracks like “I’ve Been Lost For So Long” and “Where Are We Now?” bring me back to the days where AF really drove the point home that you don’t have to be sad to listen to “emo” music. Along with the jazzy offbeats, trumpet calls, and the chord structure, this is certainly an album not be ignored for the a-typical alternative listener.
While it doesn’t live up to the original album, it certainly isn’t a bad choice. After 17 years one would think that the band would drift in a different direction. For this album, they don’t but in the grand scheme of things, that isn’t a bad thing.
“American Football (LP2)” doesn’t blow the doors off anything that could have been, but for fans of the American Football from the 90’s, better recording processes and updated lyrics make this an album you’ll want to listen to for a long time.