Chris #2 of Anti-Flag signed fellow Pittsburgher Derek Zanetti (also known as The Homeless Gospel Choir) after seeing him play a couple of times in his hometown. The same man produced Zanetti’s A-F Records debut “I Used To Be So Young“. And if you thought Anti-Flag could sing protest songs, take a listen to this album. Here’s why:
Even though Zanetti takes a lot after Anti-Flag with his political songs, they contain a more personal touch. Especially after looking up the quote at the end of “Some People“, you find out who inspired Zanetti a lot. The quote comes from a tape of Daniel Johnston, used in the 2005 film documentary “The Devil and Daniel Johnston” (fragment below). Take a listen to his music and Zanetti might as well be the new Johnston, but with more punk influences.
For example, the repetitive “Jesus Christ didn’t die so you could be an asshole”, followed by different verses (“Some People”, “Untitled”, “Black Friday”) could be something right out of Johnston’s 1983 “Yip/Jump Music” when combined.
“I Used To Be Young” also has a huge home recording vibe around it, as if Chris #2 did not temper with the original taping at all, and that gives the record extra edge. And it does not even matter if Zanetti is singing an inspirational song (“Don’t Give Up”), criticises your “Musicial Preference”, or tries to take down Christian holidays in “Holiday Song”, he seems to succeed in passing on his idea with his carefully and cleverly chosen lyrics.
All in all “I Used To Be Young” is a well rounded album, covering all grounds while staying in his concept of a post-apocalyptic world where people need to be shown the ‘right path’.