US punk rockers Anti-Flag makes their first appearance in Singapore on 13th December at the Aliwal Arts Centre. Singer/bassist Chris #2 took time out of the band’s busy touring schedule to answer our queries.
Is there renewed relevance for punk rock in the wake of the recent US presidential elections?
I think that anytime someone like Donald Trump rises to power, it empowers racists, sexists, bigots to come out and show their true selves. This gives us in the punk rock community an enemy. One we don’t shy from confronting. So in a way it does light a fire for our scene. But truthfully, we had enough to worry and write and sing and protest about before Trump. And will long after.
Anti-Flag has always stood for political activism in music – is that realistic? Can any political change be made through music?
Absolutely! Political music changed each one of us in the band. We know first hand. It works. Not to mention the amazing amount of amazing people we have met who are in public services or jobs where they take the activism they learned in punk rock into their daily lives.
What is the greatest challenge in taking a political stand as musicians? How do you keep yourself honest in getting your message on point?
Personally I think it’s challenging when you’re in a political punk band and people expect you to be educated on all current issues. We are normal people. We need to be educated just like anyone else. So we learned we have to be honest. When we don’t know something. We have to have say so.
Have you ever been to Singapore before? What do you know about Singapore and the music scene here?
NEVER!! We are beyond excited. I’m really excited to see what the scene is like. Our trip will be short but we plan on packing in a ton.
What do you hope to achieve here in Singapore – beyond of course the performance of a gig.
To show people that have listened to Anti-Flag in Singapore that we are a band for everyone. That the songs and the show are about empathy. Fighting for social and economic justice worldwide. And that we truly are humbled that our art has taken us so far from home, but still we feel like we are with family.
If there was one main message that you would want folks to take away from your Singapore gig, what would that be?
If you need a place to be free to be yourself, an Anti-Flag show can be that. There is no band or audience. There is only all of us.
Get your tickets now!
… still there’s more …