New Music Tuesday After All!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011
While I don't really want to waste, uh, I mean spend money on a band whom I currently only have two songs by (sorry pop), I do actually have something for New Music Tuesday, while there is still an hour left for Tuesday! It's only a single, but it's from one of my favorite modern political punk rock artists! And by that, I mean the only modern politically driven rock band I know of outside of Green Day. However, unlike Green Day, Rise Against is more political than social in their musical commentary on modern society. Rise Against is also not as well known, maybe because they're not quite as acceptable or, let's be frank, awesome as the only other rock band I can name that is still willing to write about modern issues (VIVA LA GREEN DAY!). Oh, also, Rise Against, being very political, also alienates a lot of listeners because they are very outspokenly liberal and, honestly, socialistic. Not that it's a bad thing, even if you don't agree with them, it's at least honorable that they use their music to send a message at all and not just write about drugs, girls, and how much getting dumped sucks (thanks, modern rock).

Their new single is the vanguard for their next album, which is slated for an early March release. Obviously, I like Rise Against, but their last album, Appeal to Reason, has not aged well since its August 2008 release. At the time, the ENTIRE ALBUM was dedicated to bashing the former Republican presidency in order to come down on re-election Republican hopefuls. Which was cool at the time, I mean, fight with music right? But today, the album's message is just a dated glimpse at that election year, and it doesn't really hold any relevance now that there isn't a Republican president. While this is a good song and all, and given it's hopeful message a State of the Union release was pure genius, I feel like it's coming from the same place as Appeal to Reason, since it's very much focused on something that is important now, but will cease to have meaning in two years. Now, mind you, not all their music is like that. The songs that first got me into this band, Swing Life Away and Prayer of the Refugee, are still as heart-wrenching as they were back in 2004 and 2006, respectively.

I guess that's the gamble with writing political issue-fueled music: the message is strong upon release, but like so many other issues is soon forgotten. Until then, here is Help is On the Way, the first single off of the upcoming album Endgame. As I stated before, the song's strategic release seems to do what Rise Against has always done fairly well: Give and angry voice to the disenfranchised of society. Also, in case it isn't obvious, all of the members of the band are avid Obama supporters. Enjoy!

1 comment :

  1. I love that our grown sons will say their musical taste was formed, in part, by what their father and I listened to. The tables are turning in my twilight years (eew twilight) and I am not discovering bands my sons like listening to. Some are hits. Others, not so much.
    I had never heard of this group before but gave them a shot. Besides, any time anyone is going to compare someone to my beloved Green Day, I pay attention.
    Hard to base anything on one song, but this is no Green Day wanna be group. This is the most polite anger I've heard in a they decided they were really pissed about something but thought maybe everyone would listen if they asked nicely? Is this a reflection of that generation? Did we raise a lot of really polite and thoughtful young people who feel strongly but perhaps not passionately about the state of the world. Is this where apathy is born? If someone wants to rage against the machine, I'd like to hear some actual rage in there. While I will admit the song sounds hopeful (how many times do they say help is on the way in this song?)I think we live in a political society in which asking nicely just gets you shoved out of the way. A far cry from Green Day's lyrics:
    "Sieg Heil to the president Gasman
    Bombs away is your punishment
    Pulverize the Eiffel towers
    Who criticize your government
    Bang bang goes the broken glass and
    Kill all the fags that don't agree
    Trials by fire, setting fire
    Is not a way that's meant for me
    Just cause, just cause, because we're outlaws yeah!

    I beg to dream and differ from the hollow lies
    This is the dawning of the rest of our lives
    I beg to dream and differ from the hollow lies
    This is the dawning of the rest of our lives

    This is our lives on holiday "

    Now go shopping and make America better...won't you?


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