| April 1998|
28 April 1998
| March - September 1997|
| Inner Ear Studios, Arlington, Virginia|
Punk rock, Post-hardcore, Alternative rock, Noise rock, Art punk
Fugazi albums, Punk rock albums
End Hits is the fifth studio album by the American post-hardcore band Fugazi. It was recorded at Inner Ear Studios from March 1997 to September 1997 and produced by Don Zientara & Fugazi. It was released on April 28, 1998 through Dischord Records. The album saw the band continuing with and expanding upon the in-studio experimentation of their previous album Red Medicine. Due to the title, rumors began circulating at the time that it was to be their last release.
Due to the album's title, many speculated that it would be the band's last release. Although the title refers to, literally, end-of-the-album drum hits by drummer Brendan Canty that occur after the last song on the album, "F/D" ends. These drum hits are actually outtakes from the bridge-section of the track "No Surprise," the fourth song on the album. The title was later revealed to have been an inside-joke by the band.
After the grueling worldwide tour the band had completed in support of their previous album, 1995's Red Medicine they took an extended break and also began writing material for a follow up release. By March 1997 Fugazi had once again returned to Inner Ear Studios with producer/engineer Don Zientara to begin recording what would become the End Hits album with the intention of taking a more relaxed approach to recording and a longer amount of time to experiment with different songs and techniques in the studio. The group ultimately spent 7 months recording the album.
A wide-variety of sound effects and unusual microphone placements were used during both the recording and mixing process. In addition, the band used electronic drums, synthesizers and the practice of drum-layering for the first time, which is most evident on the track "Closed Captioned." Brendan Canty explained to Tape Op Magazine in 1999 "When "Closed Captioned" was recorded, the basic tracks to it are all a drum machine and then I overdubbed two different drum sets on top of it, which I love doing, it gives distance to a song." Recording for the track "Floating Boy" saw all the drum mics removed at the end of the song except for the bottom-snare mic, to create a hollow and muffled sound, after which synthesizer and several layers of reverb were added.
Released on April 28, 1998 the album was commercially successful and marked one of the band's highest debuts yet on the Billboard charts. However, critical reaction to End Hits was mixed. Many critics praised the album's heavier tracks like "Five Corporations" and "Place Position" while others questioned the inclusion of the group's longer, more experimental songs like "Closed Captioned" and "Floating Boy".
The picture on the album cover is of Hong Kong with the Hopewell Centre prominent in the foreground. Limited vinyl copies of the album feature a gatefold cover, which folds out to display a live photograph of the band playing at the Palladium in New York City, taken by Glen E. Friedman.Ian MacKaye – guitar, vocals, composer, cover design, mixing
Guy Picciotto – guitar, vocals, composer, cover design, mixing
Joe Lally – bass, vocals, composer, cover design, mixing
Brendan Canty – drums, composer, cover design, mixing
TechnicalJerry Busher – photography
Jem Cohen – cover design
Jason Farrell – cover art, composer
Glen E. Friedman – photography
Leanne Shapton – cover design
Don Zientara – engineer
Billboard (North America)
Rapper P.O.S references and samples the song "Five Corporations" on his album False Hope. This song was later released on Never Better.
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