Singled Out: Semi Automatix's Never Fading

Semi Automatix

New York punk rockers Semi Automatix recently released their new single "Never Fading" and to celebrate we asked Matt Gevaza to tell us the story behind the track. Here is the story:

Never Fading was written in the summer of 2004 between my junior and senior year of high school. At the time we were all going through a lot of changes, trying to find our place in the world.

At the time we were in a bit of a political awakening. There was a mass hypnosis in the post-9/11 world and the drumbeat to war was sounding. Instinctually we knew it was based in lies and greed, and we gravitated towards political punk bands like NOFX, Anti-Flag, the Unseen, and Leftover Crack who sung about things that the mainstream wouldn't talk about.

So, even though we were younger, they were not simpler times. There was a lot of pressure all around - to fit in, to keep your parents off your back, to go to college, to decide what you wanted to do with your life, to think freely in a society that was trying hard to make you conform, to be cool, to chase girls, to keep up with technology, and so on and so on.

Everything around us was changing. But to us, the most important thing was to stay true to who we were. To face down all these pressures and changes and come out with your spirit intact was our idea of victory.

With all of this going on, the lyrics to Never Fading just kind of happened. It was boiling on the subconscious and it just broke through as an anthem for everyone else who was going through the same things that we were.

The first verse of the song starts off by describing the struggle of trying to fit in but still feeling like an outcast. It addresses the lack of fairness in the world, and the pressure from society to bottle up your feelings and become a good functioning drone (aka an 'adult'). It ends with a phrase of triumph, however, and a notion of standing up for the outcasts.

My feelings lie deep inside my head
Broken beaten down and dead
I try and find a place to belong
But it's a fight I've been losing for too long
There's no truth no justice no meaning
We're searching for something to believe in
I won't give up and I won't back down
For all those lost and never found

The second verse continues along this trajectory, but really doubles down on the notion that we're not going to let the darkness and injustice of the world drag us down. It describes the restlessness of youth, the feeling of not fitting in but not really giving a f*** about that, and the resolve to keep fighting for what you believe in.

Sometimes I wish I could be normal
Just like everyone else
But then I remember what I'm fighting for
The worlds too f***ed up to ignore
I look around and all I see
Is a world full of hatred and misery
My eyes grow tired my legs are weak
But my mind refuses to let me sleep

The chorus of the song kind of has two meanings. On one hand, it's about punk rock. The music scene on Long Island at the time was dominated by Ska and Emo, so we didn't really fit the mold. It's homage to the idea that punk isn't dead because the spirit of punk rock lives on forever. On the other hand, the chorus reflects a group of kids who had grown together, been outcasts, faced those difficult formidable years together, and came out the other side. We were a bit tattered and torn, maybe missing a few pieces here and there, but we still had our 'f*** you' attitude and wanted to take on the world.

We are what's left of the fight
Never fading
The spirit will never die

The band parted ways in 2005, and this song sat dormant for a long time until we decided to reunite a couple of months ago. Now that 14 years have passed since we wrote this song, it's really interesting to revisit it from a new perspective and see how the messages still ring true in us today, perhaps now more than ever. We never really fit in, and we don't ever really plan on it. We're much more comfortable relating to the outcasts of the world, and we have no love for the status quo. The worlds more f***ed up now than ever, and the 'fight' lives on. This one's for all those lost and never found!

Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen for yourself here and learn more right here!

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Singled Out: Semi Automatix's Never Fading