Rise Against is a relatively new band from Chicago formed by members of 88 Fingers Louie and Coloradoan Brandon Barnes (drummer) from Pinhead Circus.
Formed in 1999, the group, who just finished a tour with Agnostic Front, TSOL and the Casualties, cites Sick of It All and Bad Religion as their main influences. The group creates a fusion of these two bands, one of hardcore punk rock and melodic vocals.
Joe Principe (bassist) and Tim Mcilrath (vocals) are the main songwriters of the band. Recently, Barnes and Dan Wieklinski (guitarist), started contributing to the songwriting process.
Each member of the band got into the music scene in a similar fashion. Friends introduced Principe and Wieklinski to hardcore punk rock as teens, while Mcilrath grew into the music through his friendship with Principe.
The band feels that they are helping keep the musical style of punk strong through their albums. “Bands that influenced us, the kids that listen to us don’t know, they think it’s us just doing a new thing, and I like to be vocal about how our sound developed,” Principe said in an interview with KCSU.
“You go to shows right now and there’s still a ton of kids out there and new kids being brought into the scene and it [the music] still really affects people’s lives,” Principe said.
“You’ll meet a 14-year-old kid at his first punk show, and there’ll be a thirtysomething person there with tons of stories about his punk experiences. Punk has, and will continue to have, a positive influence on people’s lives,” Mcilrath said.
“I just hope it [punk] doesn’t become some passe genre, sort of become less of a movement and more of a ‘style.’ When I was a kid, the music was sort of a threat. I just hope it stays edgy and not so watered down like some other bands,” Wieklinski said.
The band relies on the participation of each member of the band to create the music and sound of the songs to keep the albums different and constantly evolving.
“We all want someone to get a positive idea from the music. Stand up for yourself, don’t let anyone push you around; that’s what we want people to get from our music,” Principe said.
“Rise Against is all about keeping the energy and edge in our music,” Principe said. n