October 07, 2008 - DGC/Interscope
Rise Against owe a heavy debt to the classic “thinking man’s punk” bands who’ve come before them. The Chicago-based punk band usually find ways of channeling those well-established traditions into timely discourse, to which you can’t help but raise your fist. Unfortunately, those moments are hit-or-miss on their latest release, Appeal To Reason, even though the group haven’t really changed their sound since 2006’s The Sufferer & The Witness. It all boils down to the simple question of which songs grab you, so there are certainly reasons to give Appeal a whirl and decide for yourself. “Re-Education (Through Labor),” “The Strength To Go On” and “Entertainment” snarl and growl just like Rise Against songs should, but other times (“Collapse (Post-Amerika),” “Audience Of One,” “Hairline Fracture”) the record plods along like a recycled Bad Religion cast-off. But hey, even BR wrote their share of clunkers-who remembers No Substance?