Rise Against – Appeal To Reason – review

Chicago’s Rise Against is anything but a single-minded musical outfit. An astounding fusion of unhinged power, ear grasping melodies, stimulating lyrics and the ability to reach audiences in both underground and mainstream circles, they have redefined the rules. To date, the band has released four albums plus a rare material EP, and a DVD called Generation Lost. Each of their past two albums have sold just shy of 1/2 million copies in the U.S. with each album garnering three full on Modern Rock radio hits.

Rise Against
Artist: Rise Against
Title: Appeal To Reason
Label: Interscope
Rating: 0/10

Corporate line:
Chicago’s Rise Against is anything but a single-minded musical outfit. An astounding fusion of unhinged power, ear grasping melodies, stimulating lyrics and the ability to reach audiences in both underground and mainstream circles, they have redefined the rules. To date, the band has released four albums plus a rare material EP, and a DVD called “Generation Lost.” Each of their past two albums have sold just shy of 1/2 million copies in the U.S. with each album garnering three full on Modern Rock radio hits.

The good:
“Audience of One” – This is where Rise Against are at their Goo-ey best. Rise Against have some serious Goo Goo Dolls flavor on this song. It has the biggest potential for mass consumption. Whether that is good or bad is a matter of taste–but it seems that Rise Against has been chasing a hit throughout the album.

“The Dirt Whispered” – The rare occasion where a song feels like it has some soul–yet it still sounds far too much like every other song on the album.

The rest:
“Collapse (Post-Amerika)” – There is some passion and a message–but you’ve heard it all before except with more poignancy. Where are the Sex Pistols when you need a revolution?

“Forgotten Sons” – Rise Against shoots for an epic but settle for average.

“Entertainment” – The definition of filler.

Finally:
The biggest issue with Rise Against’s “Appeal To Reason” is that it doesn’t sound so new. Sadly, Rise Against doesn’t take a big enough risk. So instead of going more for a Bad Religion or Sex Pistols potency they settle for radio songs in a bad attempt at being the Goo Goo Dolls. Unfortunatly, Rise Against end up stuck in the middle of nowhere by playing it safe.

4 thoughts on “Rise Against – Appeal To Reason – review”

  1. I have to be honest and say I disagree completely with this review. Not because of the final verdict (though I do think it’s a strong album), but because of the songs you picked to illustrate your point. “Audience Of One” is a middle-of-the-road ballad that stands as the weakest track on the album. Meanwhile, all the songs you picked as being “the rest” are, in my opinion, solid songs.

    Maybe I just misunderstand, because at the end of the review you say that the Goo Goo Dolls-like sound is a bad idea. I know reviewing is always partially a matter of opinion, I was just surprised at your examples.

  2. Entertainment and Collapse are two of the best songs on the album, and Audience of One is the worst in my opinion. I agree with Chris

  3. Strange that Savior isn’t mentioned in the review. I (and most of the reviews I’ve red) think it is the best song of the album. And I agree with Keef, it’s the rock album of the year!