Friday, February 27, 2009

Get Down with Rise Against

Rise AgainstLyrically-awesome, politically-charged, makes-you-want-to-get-up-and-jump-around Rise Against deserves a tip o the hat, even if it's just from me. Why, you may be wondering? They’ve recently been given PETA’s Best Animal Friendly Band Award!

But I guess it’s not that surprising, seeing as how the members of RA are strict vegetarians and proud PETA-supporters. C’mon, it would be like leather-bound Marilyn Manson not winning the Most Frequent Cow-Wearer Award. (Image: – Isn’t it kind of strange that it looks like it says, “Rise Against Vegetarians”?)

Wait – there’s more…

Besides their in-your-face music, RA’s videos are chock-full of truth. Their PETA-inspired video for “Ready to Fall” condemns animal cruelty by taking aim at sport-hunting (pun intended), environmental pillaging and pollution, “efficient” mass-processing technologies, and our general ignorance of the issue.

And just as PETA uses shocking, disturbing, nightmare-inducing images to create awareness, “Ready to Fall” will make you think twice about where your food comes from – and then make you want to kick your own ass for not thinking about it before.

True to their name, Rise Against goes against the mainstream by using music to expose violence rather than exploit it (50 Cent comes to mind here) and by using their fame to encourage change.

Aside from their PETA-friendliness, RA has teamed up with Vans to create a line of skate shoes that are not only vegan-appropriate, but slave-labour-free. (Yeah, apparently such things DO exist.) However, their video for “Prayer of the Refugee” shows this particular fight is far from over.

Set in what looks like a Wal-Mart, “Prayer of the Refugee” slams slave labour by exploring the histories of the products sitting on the shelves, and the lives of the workers who make them. Suddenly rollback prices don’t look so good.

And with their latest album, Appeal to Reason, RA has already begun to tackle the “hot” topics of today. Illegal immigration, the war in Iraq, gay marriage, Gitmo, and the silencing of truth by those in power are fair game in RA’s new video, “Audience of One.”

Like “Ready to Fall” and “Prayer of the Refugee,” “Audience of One” is a reflection of our world, and of what needs to be fixed. An appeal to reason, perhaps?

The video shows a little boy playing with a model world, and by playing I mean destroying. I'm pretty sure the boy is supposed to be George W. Bush.

Did I mention I love these guys?

P.S. Rise Against Canada and US tour dates have been announced. I guess I know where I’ll be July 31, 2009!

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