Music News

Rise Against’s Tim McIlrath keeps the rock music faith: “I still crave that ferocity”

Credit: Wyatt Troll

For over 20 years, Rise Against has used punk and rock music to soundtrack rising against injustice and corruption, and that won’t be changing for the band’s next record, Nowhere Generation.

As frontman Tim McIlrath tells ABC Audio, the thrill of creating rock music has never gone away for him.

“When we started making music as teenagers, you couldn’t make it with headphones on,” McIlrath recalls. “You couldn’t make it sitting at a coffee shop on a laptop.”

“The music you made literally shook walls,” he continues. “It made your parents flick the lights on in the basement and tell you to shut up. It made people call the cops ’cause it was so loud.”

Growing up, McIlrath fell in love with the “physicality” of rock.

“It was just this ferocious sound,” McIlrath says. “I think that I still crave that ferocity of rock music.”

“Rock music is that to me,” he adds. “When you go see it being played it’s loud, when you see it being made it’s loud, when you write it it’s loud. I like that tangible nature of it all…it always spoke to me.”

While McIlrath does see how guitar-driven music has dwindled in the mainstream, that was never a big concern for him.

“It’s crazy how much less rock is on the radio or just when you’re walking around, that kind of thing,” he says. “But it’s never bothered me, and it’s never shaken my faith in it.”

Nowhere Generation will be released June 4.

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