A Hard Farewell to Say Anything

A Hard Farewell to Say Anything

August 16, 2018 0 By Bryan Swann

What a mixed bag of emotions am I in right now? Max Bemis has announced a sort of closure on the Say Anything chapter, whether it be permanent of temporary, no one knows. He writes, “Our plans as a collective are to, kind of sort of, end Say Anything. Or ‘the first era of Say Anything.”

Photo courtesy of Boyd Dupree

While I am sad to say goodbye to the band that has been such a huge part of my life for so long I also feel happy and proud of Max for making this decision for himself and his family. Max wrote 9-pages of details diving into what has all built up to him making this decision. (You can see it in a convenient PDF file HERE). The pages detail Bemis’ realizations and openness regarding his sexuality, spirituality, and a dark Heath Ledger-esque dark drug-filled spell that comic books and the birth of his son broke him out of. Max also digs into .Is a Real Boy, and his views on the album that roughly started it all, and how that parallels to the band’s upcoming album Oliver Appropriate.

Oliver Appropriate is a direct sequel to .Is A Real Boy. See what Max had to say about the album below.

The listener and I follow Oliver over the course of two days. The first song kicks it off with Oliver waking up on a hungover Sunday in his filthy Bushwick apartment and follows him to a contrived dive bar where he meets the first boy he allows himself to fall in love with, again played by Karl, who expresses his role through vocal counterparts and his drumming. Oliver, despite having a girlfriend he doesn’t really care about, ends up sleeping with Story Karl, which drives him nuts because he won’t truly accept that he could love a boy not as a joke or an expression of contrived “experimentation”. Oliver just rejects Karl and treats him like another conquest. After being fired the next day from his vague and boring job in marketing, he feels empty and thinks “maybe this boy is the answer” and regrets his decision. He seeks out Karl, who he assumes will just love him back. Karl rejects him and tells him he’s actually sort of into another guy. In a fit of rage, Oliver kills Karl, absconds to a San Francisco and drowns himself, tied to his lover’s corpse and a gigantic stone. The album ends with Oliver’s ascension after death and his acceptance of what he’s done to himself, Karl, and the world. I would like to think he is reborn and goes somewhere better and since I believe in the power of story, I believe this to be (fictionally) true, since I did write the damn thing.”

Max also had this to add about Say Anything after the release of Oliver Appropriate, “There will be no full U.S. tour to support the record or in the near future. I am done being a touring musician as my main profession. Say Anything is retiring in the sense that JAY-Z did. It’s not an indefinite hiatus or a breakup because that’s impossible. But we’ll get to that.”

Photo courtesy of Boyd Dupree

If you would like to know more read the PDF that I linked to earlier in this post and I will post a message from Sherri below. Also, keep an eye out for an Artist Spotlight for Max Bemis to come soon. You can preorder Oliver Appropriate at on iTunes!

Hey y’all, it’s Sherri here (Max’s wife).

Most people who know me personally (and most people who don’t – hi instagram! @sdupreebemis) know that I’m transparent and honest all of the time.

In 2007 I was lucky enough to come across and fall-madly-in-love-with, a man who is the same. Transparent. Honest. Nearly ten years (and three kiddos) later, we’re still rocking and rolling together and it’s the best. Literally.

So, to keep it short (since Max’s statement is anything but), Max is doing great. We’re all loving on him and supporting him through this whirlwind of change and a huge career shift. He’s a madman. (Metaphorically, and not in the ‘crazy’ way that he often gets pinned as).

He loves madly, he cares madly and he creates madly. And I’m here to let you know, the narrative doesn’t stop here. It’s just the beginning. So stay tuned. And you (like me) will always be pleasantly surprised.

Keep up with him on Twitter; Or join me over on my Instagram for some sappy/adorable photos of him that I sneak when he’s not looking.

If you want to support him, know that this decision, the time leading up to it, and the time since have seen Max doing a lot of crying, taking time off from social media and anything triggering as much as possible….and growing. We’re best friends and so I know he’s in both a sensitive and strong state so kindness and understanding is all we as a family require from you guys if you choose to say hi.

If what Max wrote doesn’t make it clear, he’s recovering from a PTSD “breakdown” and this is not really bipolar-related stuff. It’s a guy who followed his passion to the point of almost breaking who stopped and saved his own life for us and those who care. Which has left him joyful but needing rest and relaxation and positivity.

We love you guys. Thanks for loving our family and always supporting us through our creative journey. We’re the kind of people who do not take that for granted. See you out there. Soon.

XO

Sherri