Earlier this year US-based hardcore outfit Rise Against released this incredible eighth studio album Wolves via Virgin Records.

This release also marks the band’s first album in over a decade without the involvement of longtime producers Bill Stevenson and Jason Livermore.

Rise Against’s politically charged latest offering was recorded in Tennessee. Although Nashville has always been traditionally known as a music city it is somewhat demographically different to their Chicago base, due to the area’s largely pro-Trump following. Subsequently, themes around the then presidential election fed into the band’s current long player.

Tonight Rise Against makes a welcome return to the North East of England for their first show in the region in 6 years. During the course of the band’s set, Tim McIIrath speaks of how much they had been looking forward to playing in front of Newcastle’s rowdy crowds and judging by the response the band receives tonight the feeling is most certainly mutual.

Chants of “Rise” reverberates around the room as the band bursts onto the stage like a swirling vortex of energy. Rise Against immediately break into “Chamber The Cartridge” – a number which whips their fans into a frenzy with its frantic pace, hard-hitting rhythm and infectious hooks. McIIrath towers over the audience from the riser at the front of the stage as he commands the audience whilst grasping a megaphone.

By mid-way through the band’s emphatic second song – “Give It All” the fans get up close and personal with Tim, who jumps up onto the security fence, with his microphone raised aloft whilst encouraging the crowd to sing along.

Of course, there is room in the show for a few tracks from the band’s current long player with both “The Violence” and their catchy melodic number “House on Fire” featuring in the first half of the show. Rise Against pour every ounce of themselves into their performance, their energy is truly relentless. During fan favourite “Prayer Of The Refugee” the audience sing so loudly it almost blows the roof off the O2 Academy Newcastle.

The band slows down the proceedings somewhat during a short solo acoustic segment which helps to portray the many different facets of Rise Against. This segment also allows McIIrath to really connect with the Geordie audience whilst at the same time sharing the inspiration and social issues behind these poignant numbers. The sense of community within the room intensifies during this trio of acoustic songs – “Hero of War”, “People Live Here” and “Swing Life Away”.

Rise Against race towards the finish line with the title track of their new album, during which the crowd are clapping along from the off before rounding out their explosive set with fan favourite “Satellite”.

Chants of ‘one more tune’ resonate around the room, and deservedly so as the band returns to the stage for an encore. Rise Against close out their 90-minute set and their current UK tour with “Make It Stop (September’s Children)” and their crowd-pleasing anthem “Savior”.

With each and every album and tour that follows Rise Against continue to go from strength to strength. The band’s passion and strong beliefs are both refreshing and encouraging as we traverse these difficult times.

Rise Against
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Event Date: 08-Nov-2017

About The Author

Adam Kennedy is an experienced music photographer based in northeast England. He has been shooting concerts for several years, predominantly with the band Vintage Trouble. In 2013, he was one of their tour photographers, covering the UK and Ireland tour including the headline shows and as opening act for The Who. As an accomplished concert photographer, Adam's work has been featured in print such as, Classic Rock Blues Magazine, Guitarist Magazine, Blues in Britain magazine, broadcast on the MDA Telethon on ABC Television in the US, used in billboard advertising for Renaissance Hotels in the US, and featured online via music blogs such as Uber Rock and Guitar Planet. He is also the official photographer at Newcastle Rock and Blues Club.

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