Following in the footsteps of the wildly successful Appeal to Reason, Rise Against deliver another blast of driving, politically charged, melodic hardcore with Endgame. While their sound isn’t as fiery as it used to be, the band has dialed up the intensity with their message, telling a tale of an America that’s been through one disaster after another, and the kind of world that we might be able to find on the other side of the darkness, providing listeners with a rallying cry to get up and do something about the world if they don’t like the way it is. Musically, Rise Against are as solid as ever, but this time around, it feels like a lot of the heavy lifting is being done by singer Tim McIlrath. At times, McIlrath seems to be channeling the thought-provoking lyricism of Greg Graffin (and even sounds like him here in there), providing listeners with a frank and honest picture of what’s going on in the world, concerning himself more with what he thinks people need to hear than what they want to hear on tracks like “Broken Mirrors.” Though it could be said that Rise Against have ditched their punk roots for a more radio-friendly approach, the sound of Endgame feels more like a logical progression than a good old-fashioned selling out. As the band has grown as both individuals and musicians, so has its sound. The great thing about punk is that it’s not how you say something, it’s what you’re saying, and Rise Against are still a band with plenty to say. All the d-beats and raw vocals in the world don’t mean a thing if you don’t have a message you believe in.
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AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney