Giving It Their All: Rise Against tackles the tough subjects in lyrics |
Giving It Their All: Rise Against tackles the tough subjects in lyrics

Giving It Their All: Rise Against tackles the tough subjects in lyrics

Photo by Wyatt Troll

By Alex Gallagher | August 15, 2021

Rise Against lead singer and rhythm guitarist Tim McIlrath says a lot has happened in the three years it’s been off the road.

“If you were a 14-year-old getting into Rise Against the last time we toured, you’ve had to wait until you were 16 or 17 years old to see us live. This may be the first time you hear some of these songs.”

Rise Against will bring its blaring sound to Arizona Federal Theater on Tuesday, August 17, as part of its tour in support of its latest album, “Nowhere Generation.”

McIlrath is looking forward to giving new fans a taste of “Nowhere Generation” with songs like “Sudden Urge,” “Broken Dreams” and “Forfeit.” He’s also anticipating playing the title track live.

“I definitely want to hear ‘Nowhere Generation’ sung back to me,” McIlrath says. “That song was meant to be sung back and I look forward to the anthemic quality of that song.”

Rise Against creates its setlist with its varied fanbase in mind.

“I always try to keep the new fans in mind that the new music may be their introduction to Rise Against and then they’ll go back and listen to some of the older stuff,” McIlrath says.

The new material has been well received, according to McIlrath.

“We’ve been a band for a long time,” he says.

“This is our ninth record, and I always underestimate the reception of our new albums. It’s been really cool to see this rising class of Rise Against fans coming up with our new albums.”

Rise Against is just as excited about the older material. McIlrath says it’s cool to “dust off everything”— including the “big singles.”

Rise Against plans to break out hard-hitting hits like “Savior,” “Ready to Fall” and “Prayer of the Refugee,” as well as acoustic hits like “Hero of War” and “Swing Life Away.”

Rise Against doesn’t shy away from tough topics like depression, PTSD and crises in its lyrics. McIlrath hopes their songs enlighten audiences.

“I always hope at a Rise Against show there is always some sort of catharsis for our listeners and there is a moment for the fans to be in some sort of community,” he says.

“I hope that by singing these songs at the top of your lungs, it helps you be able to go to work the next day or to school the next day.”

Beyond the show, he wants to give fans a new lease on life.

“I hope that our fans see that music and art can be about more than entertainment,” he says.

“I hope that we can make people feel a little less alone and inspire them to find their place in the world.”

Rise Against w/Descendents and the Menzingers

WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, August 17

WHERE: Arizona Federal Theater, 400 W. Washington Street, Phoenix

COST: Tickets start at $35