POZ Review: Rise Against - The Black Market
by Steve Ciccarelli, edited by Erik van Rheenen
The new Rise Against album is not very good. Especially compared with their last release, a 10th anniversary reissue of perhaps their best record, Revolutions Per Minute. But I don’t fault Rise Against for The Black Market’s failings. I fault their timing.
Let’s think back on the past decade: the Chicago punks saw a meteoric rise to some kind of Springsteen-esque stature, but used their position to bring bands like The Gaslight Anthem, Thrice and now Touché Amore out as opening acts, raising their profile in the process. But that’s where the dilemma is in my mind: would I rather have a Rise Against record that I like or would I rather they act as a foster family for other deserving up and comers?
It’s not like they’re not trying to be interesting—the beginning of “The Great Die-Off” sounds more like a Wilco record than the Clash but it quickly devolves into the standard “whoa-oh-oh”-ing that comes with a Rise Against song. Think about that song title out of context. “The Great Die-Off?” Sounds more like a bad teenage Tumblr than one of the biggest bands to come from punk. First single “I Don’t Want To Be Here Anymore” is the worst song of the year that has “I Don’t Want To Be…” in the title. It sounds like the Foo Fighters by way of Dischord, and not in a good way. “Tragedy + Time” feels like it was stolen from the Jersey City practice space of Banquets and dumbed down through the Rise Against ringer.