The Amity Affliction's new album, Chasing Ghosts, will be available everywhere one week from tomorrow - Tuesday, October 2. Bandleader Joel Birch has written down his explanations of each of the album's 10 tracks, and we'll be sharing them with you all week, in three installments. Today, he describes the genesis and development of "Chasing Ghosts," "Life Underground," and "RIP Bon."


“Chasing Ghosts”: “I wrote ‘Chasing Ghosts’ as a narrative based wholly around someone that has committed suicide and has passed onto the other side. It’s a story that I hope people will see for what it is; an example in song of why you should turn to someone close and talk instead of taking that last fatal step towards death prematurely. I just want to reiterate to people that once you’re gone, that’s it. There’s no ghosts. There’s no heaven, no hell, just finality and the wreckage left behind in the wake of their decision.”


“Life Underground”: "This song is written from the perspective of someone who has killed themselves; it's spoken from the grave, putting words to the regret they feel for taking their life. I guess I was really trying to put across the fact that there's no glorification that comes from suicide. It's a short trip from being alive to being dead, and once you're gone that's it. That's the theme that runs through this whole album in a great deal of the songs, and this one is no different. The lines 'Is this really what I wished for when I felt my feet drag heavy on the earth? Is this really the answer I sought when I was searching for self worth?' are directly linked to that sentiment. There's a moving from the beginning of the song to the end (with my particular parts) that the protagonist almost changes from regret to anger, from wishing he/she hadn't done it, to just wishing their memory would be erased because of the shame of it all."


“RIP Bon”: "This song I wrote to try and give voice to all the people left behind when a close friend takes their life. The thing that people need to realise when they're contemplating suicide is that there are many, many devastating repercussions to their actions, it's not just an 'easy way out' as some people may see it. I also think that the people left behind need a voice just like the people who have passed on. In this song the words are written from a friend, to a friend that has passed on, expressing their deep sense of guilt at not being able to prevent it, all the way through to their anger that their friend didn't have the strength to actually lean on them in their time of need. I really feel that's something that is happening all too often when it comes to depression, and although it's extremely hard, people need to open up to their friends as much as possible to avoid taking that final, terrible step towards death."


Pre-order Chasing Ghosts from the band's webstore, and you'll be automatically entered to win an Amity Affliction skate deck, autographed CDs, and more!


The Amity Affliction will be on tour in the US beginning October 16; find a show near you!